Cisco Systems’ HyperFlex platform brings significant benefits to a wide variety of industries. From online retailers to major health care providers, hyperconvergence is arriving in data centers and transforming enterprise IT.

If we want a closer look at the application of HyperFlex in a specific industry, higher education stands out as an ideal candidate. The technical and operational benefits of hyperconvergence truly shine in this field, where the unique computing needs of colleges and universities benefit from the agility, efficiency and adaptability of the HyperFlex platform.

Consistency Is Key

One reason HyperFlex works well in higher education is that it’s an ideal operating environment for virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) environments. College students often arrive with a wide variety of computing devices running different operating systems and carrying different hardware capabilities. This isn’t likely to cause problems in an English course that only requires access to an office productivity suite. However, it can create significant issues in technical courses, which require access to highly specialized applications that may not be compatible or licensed for use on student systems.

VDI gives students and instructors a consistent, institutionally owned desktop environment that students can access from their own devices — a model that solves both technical and legal issues. Cisco HyperFlex scales as these needs change, letting administrators dynamically add resources as course needs change.

Easily Scale Up or Down on Demand

Hyperconvergence solutions also provide significant benefits for server virtualization, bringing the adaptable “pay-as-you-grow” model of cloud computing to higher education data centers. Many college computing workloads experience significant bursts in demand that coincide with events on the academic calendar. For example, class registration systems experience significant spikes in activity between the time registration opens toward the end of a term and the time registration closes, early in the next term. Institutions running Cisco HyperFlex can easily allocate resources to the course registration system during peak periods and reallocate them when demand subsides.

A Global Reach

Institutions that host branch campuses around the region, nation or world often provide varying levels of IT support at their remote locations. In some cases, students, faculty and staff feel orphaned by central IT. HyperFlex offers an ideal solution to branch needs, enabling IT staff to deliver a consistent technology experience and providing the flexibility to grow that infrastructure as remote sites grow or new campuses are added.

Dividends for Development

Developers realize tremendous benefits when hyperconvergence platforms support their development and test environments. Instead of waiting days or weeks for platform teams to configure the physical or virtual resources to support their work, developers can directly provision support systems in minutes. For example, developers creating a new video streaming module for a learning management system can quickly provision additional storage to house test videos. When their work is complete, they can release those resources for other uses. This agile access to infrastructure increases developers’ productivity and efficiency and speeds their delivery of systems that offer direct benefits to students, faculty and staff.

Cisco HyperFlex is an ideal operating environment for higher education institutions, as well as technology professionals in other industries. Its agility, efficiency and adaptability empower technologists to rapidly meet the changing compute, storage and networking needs of diverse workloads, directing those resources where they’re needed and providing the opportunity for flexible growth of the entire environment.

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