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N°33  |  January   2009
At a glance
Corporate communications strategy: Bull on the podium with its 7i campaign

7i

The 2008 Corporate Communication Strategies Grand Prix Awards took place on 10 December 2008 in Paris.  On this occasion, the video clip for ‘Initiative 5’ of Bull’s 7i campaign – under the slogan ‘Don’t live in fear for your data’ – was awarded second prize (with an honorable mention) in the Corporate/B2B category.
  
The citation read: “At a time when rapidly rising data production is forcing IT Departments to choose what they can or cannot store, Bull has invested in a campaign which avoids using the traditional media, to reassure its business customers using an approach based on proving its claims.”

For those not familiar with the Communication Strategies awards, they are judged on how far the proposed solution is appropriate to the problem being posed, as well as the relevance of the creative idea behind the campaign and its execution. The Bull campaign was developed by TBWA Corporate.

7i5

Bull and Cassatt announce partnership to improve the efficiency of large data centers in Europe

Bull customers may cut operations, capital, and energy costs by at least 30% through dynamic control, repurposing, and power management

Cassatt 

Bull and Cassatt today announced a business and technology co-operation aimed at improving the effectiveness of data center infrastructures of large European organizations, in selected lines of business, including large government and local authorities, telecommunications, finance, retail, utilities, and manufacturing.

Under the terms of the agreement, Bull will become a privileged distributor in Europe and other selected geographies of Cassatt’s suite of software products for making data centers more efficient. The two companies will initiate a technology collaboration in order to optimize the Cassatt software suite on Bull’s NovaScale and Escala server ranges, and to define a roadmap to expand their joint value proposal in the area of data center automation.

The Cassatt software suite will be marketed by Bull as part of its Bio Data Center™ initiative, which aims at providing customers with radical new approaches for operating their data centers, focusing on key aspects such as overall quality of operational processes, architectural topology, and power consumption.  Bull’s focus on this initiative matches Cassatt’s focus on providing operational efficiency through policy-based management software, controlling and optimizing multiple, diverse components of an organization’s IT infrastructure, with the ability to provide cloud computing-style benefits using an organization’s existing data center resources.

According to industry analyst firm Gartner, “the operational process and tools to run data centers need to be modified for a green data center.” (The Six Key Attributes of a Green Data Center,” Rakesh Kumar, 18 July 2008). In this research, Gartner explains that “business process triggers should be set to enable changes in ways that make the data center more efficient – for example, running less-critical applications or batch-processing jobs at a time of day when energy costs are low.”  This will also require “modifications to the core processes used to run data centers.  Also important will be the ability to use virtualization capabilities for application and virtual machine migration to shift workloads to lower utilization periods. This will involve automated power down of servers and, subsequently, power up and workload moves,” Gartner says.  

To help their customers better manage their data centers, Bull and Cassatt will provide European organizations a starting point:  active power management.  With this approach, large data center operators can automatically and intelligently power off their unused servers based on policies they set, minimizing power consumption by a factor of at least 30% for business operations workloads. Other workloads such as application development may benefit from even larger factors, up to 50%. Idle servers may be restarted as business needs require, according to rules based on demand, time and capacity, or according to specific events.
Bruno Pinna, Bull’s Marketing Director, said: “Bull announced a year ago its BioDataCenter initiative to help our customers cope with the unprecedented performance demand that is requested out of their data centers, while meeting new objectives for sustainable development. The partnership announced with Cassatt today illustrates our ambition to provide the necessary solutions to reach this objective.”

Bull will distribute the Cassatt software solutions on its own NovaScale and Escala servers, as well as on non-Bull server hardware, and will provide full life-cycle services to assess the current status of data centers, define optimization strategies, and implement power management and other policy-based efficiency solutions. Bull will also provide comprehensive support for the Cassatt solution for its customers.

Having achieved initial benefits in power optimization, customers can incrementally expand their usage of Cassatt to improve application availability and make better use of existing data center resources (including physical and virtual servers, software, and networks) through application resource control, balancing, and repurposing.  Cassatt uses automation to improve the way large-scale data centers operate, constantly working to maintain application service levels, and potentially cutting operations costs in half.

Starting point solutions with Cassatt show a payback in less than one year.
The Cassatt product line currently includes three editions, which will all be marketed by Bull:

  • Cassatt Active Response, Standard Edition – for increased energy efficiency.
  • Cassatt Active Response, Premium Edition – for increased energy efficiency and application resiliency.
  • Cassatt Active Response, Data Center Edition – for increased energy efficiency, high application availability, and server workload management in production environments.  This edition also enables the creation of a cloud computing-style infrastructure inside a data center, using existing IT resources.

Heidi Larsen, director of worldwide strategic alliances at Cassatt, emphasizes: “The partnership with Bull addresses the strategic objective of Cassatt to distribute Cassatt’s technology to a growing number of customers and markets. The combination of our software solutions with Bull hardware and infrastructure services will provide a high-performance, global solution that can enable our customers to operate their data centers more efficiently and effectively. As a kind of ‘Data Center Operating System’ that encompasses the many diverse technologies supporting IT infrastructure today, the Cassatt solution will enable CIOs to create cloud computing capabilities inside their own data centers using what they already have”.

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