SOURCE: BLADE Network Technologies

BLADE Network Technologies

September 03, 2009 13:19 ET

Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon Turns to BLADE Network Technologies

BLADE's SmartConnect With VMready Equips Hospital Data Center for Virtualization of Patient Records Database

SANTA CLARA, CA--(Marketwire - September 3, 2009) - BLADE Network Technologies, Inc. (BLADE), the trusted leader in data center networking, announced that Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon, a public health facility offering emergency, short-term and long-term care, has deployed BLADE's SmartConnect with VMready to automate and secure the hospital's network so a critical patient records database can run securely and efficiently using VMware vSphere™4 in an IBM BladeCenter environment.

The Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon's IT team knew that the hospital's patient records database application could operate more efficiently using VMware on its IBM BladeCenter servers. However, they also realized manual reconfiguration of the underlying network might potentially expose critical patient information to unauthorized access. To address these concerns, Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon's IT department worked with BLADE's partner IBM to evaluate BLADE Network Technologies' approach to network virtualization in order to fulfill their needs for easy-to-implement virtualization with confidence.

Tests confirmed that BLADE's SmartConnect with VMready software worked seamlessly with VMware vSphere4 to eliminate the need for manual intervention whenever VMs (virtual machines) moved from server to server and helped ensure that only authorized personnel could access patient records. The hospital has now deployed BLADE's SmartConnect with VMready, along with BLADE's BNT 1/10G Uplink Ethernet Switch Modules across its IBM BladeCenter data center environment for an easy-to-administer, secure and trouble-free approach to virtualization.

"BLADE Network Technologies' approach to network virtualization provides the majority of the 63 medical professionals with administrative software and data that operates securely and efficiently using IBM BladeCenter with VMware vSphere4," said Madam Hélène Sol, IT Manager (Chef de centre informatique), Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon. "In the initial request for proposal, we specified that we wanted a high-availability architecture in two geographically separate computer rooms configured in a mirror architecture including a new clean room in the new hospital under construction."

Added Mme. Sol, "In the evaluation of the offers we received, we chose an IBM BladeCenter solution with VMware vSphere4 and a NetApp SAN for the reason that the combination of the three solutions provided a better solution in relation to competitors' offers. The latest technology implemented by IBM and VMware fully met our requirements for security, availability, scalability, processing speed, resources optimization, and ease of ownership and administration."

Continued Mme. Sol, " In addition, BLADE Network Technologies' SmartConnect software with VMready integrated with the BLADE Ethernet switches provided additional functionality such as Virtual Machine awareness and Stacking, which are major advantages for VMware usage with increased redundancy and bandwidth per server. BLADE's SmartConnect with VMready, eliminated the need for manual reconfiguration of network settings whenever Virtual Machines move from blade server to blade server, which means we can gain the benefits of virtualization without introducing security vulnerabilities or additional administration complexity."

BLADE Network Technologies' SmartConnect with VMready is the first network virtualization solution that automates the data center for dynamic "live" migration of VMs. SmartConnect enables multiple BLADE BNT 1/10 Gigabit Ethernet switches in separate IBM BladeCenter chassis to operate using stacking as a single virtual switch. SmartConnect with VMready's "network aware" design monitors data centers' Virtual Machine environments to ensure that when a live VM moves from one physical host to another, the destination network is automatically reconfigured to preserve essential security, access and performance policies.

"Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon was ready for virtualization, and they knew they needed a solution that would enable seamless and secure migration of critical database files across the infrastructure," said Dan Tuchler, vice president of Product Strategy and Management, BLADE Network Technologies. "BLADE's VMready Ethernet switches for the IBM BladeCenter enabled Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon to deploy a virtualization-enriched network optimized for VMware vSphere 4 that ensures patient records remain secure while Virtual Machines migrate, maximizes network efficiency and is easy to manage without continual manual intervention."

"The combination of VMware vSphere™ 4 with BLADE Network Technologies' VMready provides customers such as Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon a dynamic data center infrastructure that increases efficiency, performance and reliability," said Shekar Ayyar, vice president of infrastructure alliances at VMware. "We look forward to continuing our work with BLADE to collaborate on solutions that help our customers focus less on the plumbing of IT infrastructure."

SmartConnect with VMready is switch-resident software that runs on BLADE's 1/10 Gigabit Ethernet switches without adding any server CPU overhead and works with all versions of VMware ESX Server.

"By automating the network configuration during the migration of Virtual Machines, BLADE's VMready adds a key value to the IBM BladeCenter server virtualization platform," said Alex Yost, vice president, IBM BladeCenter. "VMready solves the issue of maintaining both security and availability in virtualized environments, while the BNT 1/10 Gigabit Ethernet switches developed by BLADE Network Technologies specifically for the IBM BladeCenter also ensure high performance connectivity."

Using blade server systems equipped with BLADE's 1/10 Gigabit Ethernet switches and BLADE's SmartConnect with VMready, data centers can deploy virtualized applications and services that can migrate dynamically across a secure, highly available infrastructure. VMready:

--  Discovers virtual machines as they become active on the network and
    monitors them to detect the start, middle and end of a VMware VMotion™
    migration.
--  Automatically enforces network settings on the physical destination
    server to match the original configuration.
--  Supports virtual machine migration across a blade chassis, rack or
    group of racks.
--  Interacts with management consoles for added management visibility and
    control.
    

SmartConnect with VMready is part of BLADE's Cloud Ready Network Architecture -- a set of five network characteristics which ensure that Data Center networks are ready to support emerging trends in virtualization, increased server density, and cloud computing. Learn more at www.bladenetwork.net/CRNA.

About Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon

Center Hospitalier d'Avignon, located is a public health community offering emergency services, short-term and long-term care, as well as research, training and health education and prevention for practitioners, university and post-graduate students and the community. For more information, contact Centre Hospitalier d'Avignon, 305 rue Raoul Follereau, 84902 Avignon, France. Web site: www.ch-avignon.fr.

About BLADE Network Technologies

BLADE Network Technologies (BLADE) is the leading provider of Gigabit and 10G Ethernet cloud-ready networking solutions for dynamic, enterprise data centers worldwide. In addition to its innovative OEM blade switches, and SmartConnect with VMready virtualization and BLADEHarmony Manager software, BLADE's "Virtual, Cooler, Easier" RackSwitch family enables "Rackonomics" -- an efficient approach for scaling out data center networks to drive down total cost of ownership. BLADE's customers include more than 300 of the Fortune 500 across 26 industry segments, for an installed base representing over 6 million switch ports connecting over 1,350,000 servers and storage systems. Visit: www.bladenetwork.net. Twitter: @BLADENetwork.

BLADE Network Technologies, the BLADE logo, SmartConnect, and VMready are trademarks of BLADE Network Technologies. All other copyrights and marks are owned by their respective owners.

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