Partner Pulse – July 22

Microsoft

Microsoft’s flagship annual event Inspire took place predominantly virtually again this year from 19th – 21st July and, as always, the updates came thick and fast! In the keynote CEO Satya Nadella spoke in the keynote about the “existential” nature of the “digital imperative” and how technology is “a deflationary force in an inflationary economy”, driving home the criticality of digital transformation. For those of you who couldn’t make it live much of the content is still available on demand, alternately if you’re pushed for time some of the key updates have also been captured in our blog here.

Cisco

Hybrid and multicloud computing environments have redefined the trust boundary.

In the computer world, a trust boundary serves as an interface for the marking on a data packet that is allowed to flow through a network. Remote work by remote users and the consumption of cloud-based tools to perform business functions have dramatically changed the business environment and the trust boundary along with it.

“The traditional trust boundary has evaporated, or at least transformed dramatically,” said Eric Kostlan, technical marketing engineer at Cisco Systems Inc. “Although the concept of a trust boundary still exists, the nature of the hybrid, multicloud environment makes it very difficult to define. It’s not that the concept of trusted versus untrusted has gone away; it’s just become fundamentally more complex. The complexity itself is a vulnerability.”

The changing nature of the trust boundary is one of many factors in enterprise computing that Cisco are managing. One of the company’s solutions involves Snort 3, an open-source network security tool for intrusion detection. As more companies have turned to the cloud, tools such as Snort 3 have become key elements that can be integrated in virtual environments.

“There’s a large number of components to the solution, and this spans workload protection, as well as infrastructure protection,” Kostlan said. “These are integrated into cloud components, and this is what allows comprehensive protection across the hybrid cloud environment. Some of the most important technologies that we use, such as Snort 3 — which is a best-of-breed intrusion protection system that we have adopted — are applicable, as well, to the virtual environment so that we push into the cloud in a way that’s seamless.”

Cisco also applies its cloud security solutions by leveraging threat information through its Talos Intelligence Group. Talos is comprised of an experienced group of security experts whose mission is to protect Cisco customer products and services.

“Talos updates our products approximately once every hour with new information about emerging attacks,” Kostlan said. “That architecture is very easily extensible into the cloud because you can inform a virtual device just as easily as you can inform a physical device of an emergent threat. We have expanded our capacity to visualize what’s happening.

HPE

Managing hybrid cloud workloads with HPE GreenLake may be practical news for enterprises, but HPE has also been investing in a much more exciting field – the confluence of quantum technology, high-speed supercomputing, and artificial intelligence.

At the end of May, the company’s Frontier supercomputer broke the exascale speed barrier by achieving a processor speed of 1.1 quintillion floating point operations per second (1.1 exaFLOPS). HPE’s work fulfilling the need for speed is an awesome achievement on its own, but what counts are the implications for researchers to model quantum simulations without the need for quantum hardware, according to Justin Hotard, HPE’s executive vice president and general manager for high-performance computing and artificial intelligence.

“If you think about a lot of traditional computing industry, you always have to wait for the hardware to be there to write and test the application,” Hotard said. “With quantum, what’s interesting is you can model and make progress on the software. And then as the hardware becomes available, optimize it.”

Use-case scenarios Frontier can start work on today include creating more accurate Earth models for climate science, modelling the electric grid to make it more resilient, and progressing cancer and other medical research. But HPC has another major benefit: It’s green.

“We’re doing a ton more computation at far lesser power,” Hotard said.

This is important, because if HPC systems scaled their power consumption alongside processor speeds, they would use impractical levels of energy.

Dell

Dell Technologies is doubling down on helping customers recover from cyberattacks and driving cyber recovery as-a-service sales with the launch of its newest Apex offering: Cyber Recovery Services, now available for channel partners to sell.

“Dell is saying, ‘We’re going to solve for some of the people issues that become a challenge for customers who don’t have the in-house expertise. We’re giving you the capacity skills to manage this environment and go through testing cycles to make sure that the recovery is actually going to work in the event of cyberattack,’”. “Dell’s also helping customers have a consumption-based model that can even be in the cloud, to say, ‘In the event that something happens, you don’t have to worry about procuring and building another environment. We’ve got that covered for you.’ With the supply chain challenges and the people issues in our industry right now, this is really solving those two things.”

Dell Apex Cyber Recovery Services is the first in a series of new Apex full stack solutions that deliver a cloud experience to simplify recovery from cyberattacks. Dell manages the daily cyber recovery vault operations and assists with data recovery.

Dell delivers the Apex as-a-service experience with standardised configurations, simplified Dell-assisted recovery options and expertise from nearly 2,000 isolated vault solutions deployed globally.

VMware

VMware Explore 2022 is fast approaching and will take place on the 7th-10th of November in Barcelona. The event will focus on VMware’s position as a strategic leader in multi-cloud environments, modern applications, and the “work from anywhere” movement. The key sessions will cover important topics of a strong zero-trust ransomware defence, the innovations and the future of cloud security and advanced networking (VMware SASE).

As cloud and Kubernetes usage become more commonplace, they need a fresh approach to security. Cybercriminals have more opportunities to exploit these environments to deliver destructive attacks, with many targeted at cloud workloads and containers. Organizations must stay aware of trends and challenges within cloud-native technology to make sure they understand how modern applications are being exploited. VMware helps cloud security, operations, and development teams address these risks and reduce opportunities for attackers to breach their workloads.

There will be on-demand content and replays from the sessions available for those who can’t make it to the in-person event.

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