What You Missed: Nutanix .NEXT 2023
Welcome back! Today we are going to recap Nutanix .NEXT 2023 from Chicago, including some of the highlights and new technology you can expect to see in the near future.
A NEW WIND IN CHICAGO
Who is ready for some cheesy tagline? Chicago had a new wind blowing through – and it was technical differentiation with Nutanix.
Bad? Yeah, well, they can’t all be winners.
CDI’s AGNOSTIC STANCE
As many of you know, CDI prides itself on being agnostic. An excellent example of this is the fact I am on Partner Technical Advisory Boards (PTAB) of Nutanix competitors. Why mention this? Well, I was prepared for a VMware bashing. As much as I love Nutanix I’m never a big fan of when vendors attack each other unless it’s kept fun. And that is what Nutanix did, after all.
NUTANIX’s DOUBLE DOWN
Nutanix doubled, even tripled, down on its “Freedom to Choose” mantra. They urged people to select their hardware, hypervisor, and cloud. Meanwhile, they introduced their vibrant new official color, PURPLE. Rebranding is always a challenge, especially for a company like Nutanix with such an established swag game.
DIRECTION AND PRIORITIES
Enough banter, let’s get to the technology.
Rajiv Ramaswami, CEO and President of Nutanix, along with other leaders painted a great picture of where they are going. He mentioned that we have started an “application avalanche” and that in the next two years, there will be more applications developed than in the last 40.
With this, there are a couple of main issues.
Firstly, there is still a major skills gap. Secondly, the public cloud is the new silo. Thirdly, 86% of organizations find moving infrastructure services to the cloud is complex and expensive.
Despite this, cloud-native services are still a fantastic way to utilize the cloud. The issue being that it makes that app anchored to that cloud and demands skills that many organizations may not have. Rajiv made clear that tackling these concerns are his priority and that Nutanix is well positioned to help do so.
ANNOUNCEMENTS AND INNOVATIONS
One fantastic announcement was Nutanix Central. Customers and I have waited years for this: one pane to rule them all, a SaaS portal to manage all of your Prism Centrals.
Now you have a single management portal for a true Private Cloud. I say this because it’s not just top-level management or alerting, you can drill down into each Prism Central. Significantly, it can also give visibility and management to Nutanix Cloud Clusters (NC2).
NC2 is Nutanix software hosted on AWS and Azure BareMetal servers. These dedicated servers ‘should’ provide better performance versus standard instance shared systems. Rajiv made some fantastic points about ‘micro-waste’. Public cloud’s ‘t-shirt sizing’ creates a decision point of either under-sizing or over-sizing. One great use case is for companies whose cloud journeys have become costly. This solution will allow them to stay in the cloud while potentially saving money.
Multicloud Snapshots break down more silos.
Nutanix snapshots can now replicate to S3 object storage. This feature allows for saving space on primary clusters by transferring snaps to the cloud. Another use case involves taking a Snapshot on-premises, bringing it to the cloud, and recovering in NC2 in Azure, or transitioning NC2 in Azure to AWS.
Another significant announcement was Project Beacon. It’s not a product; it’s a platform. The first product is built off of ‘ERA’, their Nutanix Database data platform (NDB). The world has become data-centric, so enabling data adds value. NDB will operate in the cloud, provisioning databases in, for instance, an EC2 instance. This platform will run in Native public cloud and be managed through a single portal.
Nutanix Data Services for Kubernetes is another step in the right direction. All k8s services now base themselves on the storage itself. NDK provides data protection, recovery, migration, cloning, and copy data management for modern apps on Kubernetes. Another intriguing aspect is the optimized database solution with the ability to do compute and storage-only nodes.
To wrap up, a phrase I enjoyed from the second keynote was “Potential energy delivers kinetic results.” This phrase encapsulates the exciting reinvention of Nutanix into a data services company. The release of products that could have major business outcomes (kinetic results) is something to look forward to. The .NEXT event started the season for me, and Dell Technology World is next on my list. This year, they have been extra secretive, and we can only wait to see what’s in store.