Juniper Networks has allied with Chinese IT stalwart Lenovo to build converged, hyperconverged, and hyperscale data center infrastructure products for the enterprise and webscale markets.
The non-exclusive arrangement comes as the hyperconvergence market – tight integration of compute, networking and storage into an overall software-defined IT fabric – is reaching warp speed. Cisco entered the market last week via an alliance with start-up Springpath; HPE disclosed plans for an offering this month; and leading start-ups Nutanix and SimpliVity are expanding their product lines, ecosystems and addressable markets.
SimpliVity is also a Cisco and Lenovo partner. Nutanix is partner of Lenovo's too, and Juniper can now be included in those joint hyperconvergence deals (though the new alliance will lead off with Lenovo's own storage portfolio).
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The hyperconvergence market more than doubled in 2014 and 2015, according to IDC, and now stands at just about $1 billion. Use cases for the technology include support for virtual desktop infrastructure workloads, as well as Big Data/analytics.
The Juniper/Lenovo alliance is intended to meld Juniper’s strengths in networking and Lenovo’s in x86 servers and access switching to deliver next generation data center infrastructure. Lenovo plans to leverage Juniper’s portfolio of routers, switches, network management software, network security products and Contrail SDN technology in this effort.
Specifically, the companies will:
- align Lenovo’s RackSwitch switches, and switches for Lenovo BladeCenter and Flex Systems with Juniper’s QFX Top-of-Rack and spine switches;
- collaborate on orchestration and management of multiple switches from a single point with Lenovo xClarity, and Juniper Contrail and Network Director software;
- support Contrail on Lenovo converged infrastructure systems;
- develop disaggregated products incorporating the Open Network Install Environment (ONIE) boot loader;
- and collaborate on global go-to-market initiatives especially in China, where the companies will customize resale systems to address the unique local requirements of service providers and Web 2.0 companies.
Lenovo will sell and support Juniper’s products globally, the companies said. Juniper, however, will not resell Lenovo products.