SOURCE: Scalent Systems

November 11, 2008 08:30 ET

Scalent Announces That Blackboard® Has Implemented Scalent V/OE Software for Cloud Control

Scalent V/OE Software Enables Blackboard to Manage, Automate, and Failover Their Mixed Physical and Virtual Hosting Environment, Improving Efficiency and Reliability

PALO ALTO, CA--(Marketwire - November 11, 2008) - Scalent Systems, the leader in Real-time Management and Automation software for virtual and physical infrastructure, today announced that Blackboard Managed Hosting(SM) has implemented Scalent Virtual Operating Environment (V/OE) software to control and enable Blackboard's compute cloud. Scalent V/OE enables Blackboard to deploy, change capacity or recover full system environments in minutes, dramatically improving efficiency and asset utilization while maintaining reliability and reducing overall costs.

Blackboard Inc is a public company that hosts mission critical applications for hundreds of educational institutions serving millions of active students and participants. Like many of today's SaaS providers, Blackboard faced escalating expansion and reaction-time challenges driven by the increased pace of business change, statically allocated server hardware, and mixed physical and virtual environments.

In response, Blackboard combined products from Scalent, Red Hat, NetApp, and Dell to create a flexible, real-time environment -- an internal computing "Cloud" -- on which to base their next-generation platform.

Scalent's software is unique in its ability to provide real-time data center management, automation, and virtualization across physical and virtual servers, networks, and storage. Scalent V/OE software enables data centers to react in real-time to changing business needs by shifting workloads and connectivity: by dynamically changing entire bare-metal or virtualized systems and associated topologies -- including which servers are running, what software is running on them, and how they're connected to network and storage -- without requiring physical changes to the underlying hardware infrastructure.

By using Scalent software to create, manage, and automate their compute cloud, Blackboard reduced deployment, change and recovery time to minutes.

"Blackboard's customers demand and expect uptime and responsiveness," said Jonas Hirshfield, Sr. Director of Technology, Blackboard Managed Hosting(SM). "We started by implementing the right platform foundation for optimal price-performance -- using Scalent V/OE, we created a cohesive whole, while concurrently reducing future operational expansion costs."

"Red Hat has always been known as a leader in reliability and performance, and we're pleased to see that recognition reflected in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 adoption in cutting-edge environments like Blackboard," said Brian Stevens, CTO, Red Hat. "Scalent V/OE software complements Red Hat's existing commitment to Linux Automation by taking care of the underlying 'plumbing' differences, blurring the lines between physical and virtual compute resources and associated connectivity needs."

"NetApp helps Scalent and Blackboard hosting customers to realize the business benefits of a highly-efficient data center build upon NetApp unified storage," said Patrick Rogers, vice president of Solutions Marketing at NetApp. "Scalent's network virtualization, combined with NetApp® FlexClone®, Snapshot™, and SnapMirror® technologies, allow on-demand, near-instant deployment, capacity scaling, cloning, backups, and disaster recovery of entire systems -- not just data. Together, these technologies are huge in terms of quantifiable business benefits like operational costs savings and reducing downtime."

"Scalent software enables organizations like Blackboard to stop pre-planning and worrying about tradeoffs between bare-metal and virtual, network redundancy and complexity," said Ben Linder, CEO of Scalent Systems. "The point of 'cloud computing' is that it should be real-time infrastructure; Scalent software makes this vision a reality, enabling data centers to set up any servers, any software, any network, and any storage access, with guaranteed failover, in minutes."

About Scalent

Scalent Systems is the leading provider of Real-time Management and Automation software for virtual and physical infrastructure to data centers worldwide. Scalent's software enables data centers to react to changing business needs by dynamically changing what servers are running and how those servers are connected to network and storage. The result is effectively internal enterprise "cloud control": a real-time infrastructure, where data centers can transition between different configurations -- or from dead bare metal to live connected servers -- in five minutes or less, without physical intervention. Using Scalent software, companies have been able to implement cost-effective solutions while reducing server counts, simplifying manageability, and increasing reliability. Many of the Fortune 1000 companies rely on Scalent to support their success, having adopted the software as an integral part of their business continuity, QA test infrastructure automation, and IT operations. Scalent Systems is based in Palo Alto, with offices worldwide. Scalent's software is available globally both direct and through partners and resellers.