IT solutions are always evolving, and an agency’s ideal infrastructure in a given year might look different the next. What we are seeing now among agencies is the adoption of hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI).
Over the past few years, federal agencies in particular have shifted from the cloud back to HCI. Faced with cloud computing’s challenges (costs, limitations, lack of control of the IT environment), the scalability and control of HCI is more suitable for their needs.
As agencies’ apps and other components of their IT environments change, more turn to HCI as an alternative to a traditional, three-tiered data center infrastructure. Here are three reasons why.
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HCI Is Scalable and Simple to Manage
HCI is highly scalable, so government agencies can easily add new nodes as storage or computing needs grow. This also means organizations don’t need to overprovision resources, which helps minimize wasteful spending. Some HCI vendors allow IT shops to purchase computing- or storage-specific nodes, so they can scale up only the resources they need.
HCI can also help mitigate the effects of IT staffing limitations. By allowing IT shops to manage their computing, storage and networking, HCI dramatically simplifies the management burden.
HCI Is Flexible and Cost-Effective
Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) became popular in recent years because the model centralizes management and provides more flexibility for employee workstations. This benefited government and businesses alike during the COVID-19 pandemic, when many employees shifted to working from home.
There are also government-specific use cases — such as police patrol cars — for which VDI is a perfect long-term fit. Many organizations found that hyperconvergence offers the best foundation on which to run VDI environments, in part because of how storage and computing resources are pooled in HCI.
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HCI Is an Efficient Use of Resources
When HCI first hit the market, its premium price point was unappealing for some. However, as that cost shrinks, organizations often find that the total cost of HCI solution ownership is lower than that of traditional infrastructure, due to more efficient use of IT resources and staff time.
HCI can also help agencies shift from a capital expenditure financing model toward an operational expenditure model. While HCI does require an upfront investment, much of the expense comes in the form of recurring, predictable subscription fees.