Leading global research universities virtualize their networks with VMware NSX
May 15, 2016
VMware nsx empowers universities to become it service brokers and community cloud providers; network virtualization increases security and efficiency to support research and administration requirements
Palo Alto, CA (Marketwired), 15/05/16: VMware, Inc.(NYSE: VMW) today announced that University of New Mexico (UNM), University of New Hampshire and Université Laval have implemented production deployments of the VMware NSX® network virtualization platform. Deployed as part of a software-defined data center architecture, VMware NSX provides these university IT teams with the agility and security necessary to keep pace with the speed of research and discovery.
A huge component of IT in supporting academic research has always been the laborious task of network provisioning to support current and future applications, and ongoing configuration and management of the physical network infrastructure. Additionally, IT teams have increasingly had to improve and evolve their approaches to IT security as the research and information they possess has increasingly become the target of hackers and criminals.
UNM, UNH and Université Laval have successfully improved their IT efficiency and speed with which they can broker IT services to many different departments within their organizations by replicating the entire network model in software using VMware NSX. Additionally, these organizations have improved data center security by using micro-segmentation and the distributed firewalling capabilities of NSX to complement existing IT security solutions and build security into the fabric of their data center infrastructure. These security capabilities are also being extended from the data center to the end user through deployment with VMware Horizon® Desktop as a Service and Horizon virtual desktop infrastructure.
Building a Secure Multi-tenant Platform with VMware NSX
Previously at the University of New Mexico, each of the school's more than 100 departments had its own IT organization. With over 35,000 students and 9,100 faculty and staff on the network, it became apparent the university needed to adopt a new model for IT. UNM deployed a combination of VMware NSX and VMware vRealize® Automation™ for the university's campus-wide IT program. The micro-segmentation capabilities of VMware NSX allow the university to configure more granular security domains and network services on a per-department basis, delivering security services specific to different types of users. The combination of NSX and vRealize Automation enable a self-service model and support the department's transition to supporting infrastructure to being a broker of IT services across the university.
"Not only do we need to protect the data of each individual student, we must ensure every bit of research material is highly secured as well -- clearly, VMware NSX was a game-changer for us," said Brian Pietrewicz, Director of Computing Platforms, University of New Mexico. "The speed and efficiency benefits are also very tangible. When a department needs a system, they no longer have to order the system, wait three weeks, provision it, so on and so forth. Now the entire process, which involves logging onto a self-service portal and clicking a few buttons only takes 20 minutes. This is really what is going to allow us to double and triple in size without increasing staff."
Delivering the Speed and Flexibility Required of an IT Service Broker
The University of New Hampshire experienced a growing demand for new applications across the many colleges on its campus. Each campus application had its own individualized network and security services requirements. The growth was outpacing available IT staff resources and a complex deployment process for network services was slowing provisioning times. With every change, there was risk of service interruption to the physical network. In addition to much needed improvements, UNH was also investigating how to become a broker of services so they can drive new revenue opportunities. UNH is now leveraging available VMware vSphere® compute capacity to deliver personalized networks and security services for all of the colleges on campus using VMware NSX.
"VMware NSX is providing both cost savings and risk mitigation to UNH, as well as opportunities for easier and more capable designs for disaster recovery, automated provisioning, compliance auditing, and end user computing on campus," said Stan Waddell, CIO. "The move to implement a software-defined data center architecture with vSphere and NSX as the foundation gives us the flexibility we need to meet the IT requirements for our varied population of users and internal customers."
From IT Service Broker to Community Cloud Provider
U-Laval has implemented a central IT model that is self-sufficient and running successfully. All of the university's departments have bought in to the value of how easy it has been to use central IT as a broker of IT services. Additionally, U-Laval has developed a "community cloud" to engage municipalities, public sector entities, school boards, and government agencies in Quebec to provide an affordable cloud solution. Following a pilot with the City of Quebec, U-Laval has taken on more clients such as the Ministry of Tourism. NSX enables U-Laval to deliver completely isolated environments for customers on same infrastructure, with fast provisioning and a highly cost effective approach.
"Organizations businesses are struggling to keep up with an exponential growth in the volume of data they have to manage, inadequate or obsolete infrastructure and rapid changes in technology," said Guillaume Moutier, Director of Architecture Office, Université Laval. "With the modern software-defined data center infrastructure we've built out, and leveraging the security, automation and multi-tenancy capabilities of VMware NSX, we have been able to go to market with a solution that cost-effectively addresses these issues."
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