5 Things Solution Providers Need To Know About Lenovo-Nutanix's New HX2000 Hyper-Converged Solution
Hyper-Convergence Heats Up
PC giant Lenovo and hyper-converged infrastructure startup Nutanix made a splash this week with the release of new software and solutions aimed bringing hyper-convergence to the small- and midsize-business (SMB) market at a relatively low price point.
Nutanix introduced its Xpress software, as well as a new hyper-converged appliance based on Xpress. Lenovo, which has had a partnership with Nutanix since last year, released its HX2000 series of appliances based on Xpress software.
Both Lenovo and Nutanix do the vast majority of their business through the channel, and Lenovo executives told CRN this week that simplified hyper-converged solutions for the SMB market are a natural fit for solution providers keen to get in on the burgeoning market for hyper-convergence while selling to their traditional customer set rather than trying to break into the enterprise market.
But while the hyper-converged market is hot, it is not without challenges. Lenovo has struggled to gain traction with the x86 server line it acquired from IBM last year, and Nutanix has held off on an IPO amid difficult market conditions and mounting losses.
Here are five things solution providers should know about the new Lenovo/Nutanix hyper-converged solutions for SMBs.
The Price Is Right
Both the Lenovo HX2000 and Nutanix Xpress appliances will start at about $25,000 when they become available in July. That gets customers two nodes of the HX2000 and three nodes of the Xpress appliance with Lenovo X-series servers and Lenovo networking and storage. By comparison, Cisco recently waded into the hyper-converged waters with its HyperFlex line, which starts at $59,000 for three nodes. The OmniStack solution from startup SimpliVity uses Cisco UCS servers starts at less than $20,000.
Power And Support
The HX 2000 comes with next-generation Intel processors, DDR4 memory and tiered storage. They're also compatible with Lenovo’s XClarity management software, which the company says helps SMBs manage the infrastructure life cycle with a single point of contact for support.
Nutanix's Xpress software claims one-click, nondisruptive upgrades, and offers backup to either Amazon or Microsoft Azure cloud services through Cloud Connect. Xpress software supports multiple hypervisors and comes with Nutanix's Acropolis hypervisor at no extra charge.
An Hour Or Less
Lenovo says HX 2000 appliances can be provisioned in an hour or less, a feature the company says is key for SMB customers in local and city governments, K-12 school districts, regional hospitals and health-care firms that can't tolerate downtime, but don't have IT teams large or specialized enough to closely manage their infrastructure. Lenovo says the HX2000 comes with all software pre-installed and ready to run "nearly all" virtualized applications.
Both Lenovo and Dell have OEM agreements with Nutanix. So far only Lenovo has agreed to sell Xpress, but Nutanix executives told CRN that talks are under way with Dell, too. Radhika Krishnan, Lenovo's executive director of converged infrastructure and networking, told CRN that while Dell certainly recognizes the market opportunity presented by hyper-convergence, it is too distracted by its pending acquisition of EMC to make significant moves now.