IBM joins Middle East data centre race with two UAE facilities

Techerati | January 07, 2020

IBM is the latest tech giant to open data centres in the Middle East to connect with companies and governments subject to strict data residency regulations. The company will use the facilities to provide managed services to enterprises based in Dubai and Abu Dhabi and help accelerate their journeys to hybrid cloud. “Through our data centres, we are helping organisations accelerate their move to hybrid cloud and interconnect different clouds … creating unified systems designed for increased consistency, automation and predictability,” said Hossam Seif El Din, vice president, enterprise and commercial at IBM MEA. The company joins cloud rivals AWS, Microsoft, Oracle and Alibaba Cloud in launching facilities in the Middle East.

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IT SYSTEMS MANAGEMENT

Logpoint poll highlights extent of insecure and unmonitored business-critical systems

Logpoint | May 27, 2022

Logpoint has today announced findings from a recent poll to uncover the security and cost implications enterprises face with their existing IT infrastructure. The poll, issued on Twitter, was targeted at cybersecurity and IT professionals in both the US and UK. The poll revealed the extent of insecure and unmonitored business-critical systems, with 40 percent noting that they do not include business-critical systems such as SAP in their cybersecurity monitoring. In addition, a further 27 percent were unsure if it was included in their cybersecurity monitoring at all. This is concerning given that SAP serves as the core system behind every aspect of business operations. Not including this in the centralized security monitoring solution leaves organizations vulnerable and exposed to the risk of cyber threats. "Considering that 77 percent of global transactions touch an SAP system, protecting it against cyber-attacks is vital. Organizations store their most critical assets within SAP, and this data must be protected. SAP systems require extensive protection and security monitoring, and businesses need to ensure they have an integrated security operations platform that monitors all IT infrastructure to ensure they have complete visibility into their SAP system" said Andrew Lintell, Logpoint VP for EMEA. Furthermore, when asked how they currently review SAP logs for cybersecurity events or cyber threat activity, almost 30 percent of respondents admitted to not reviewing SAP logs in any way, and again, nearly 30 percent said they didn't know if this was being monitored. Failure to do so can create a blind spot for businesses and make it challenging to detect and quickly respond to fraud and threats within SAP. To add to this, only 23 percent said the process of reviewing SAP logs for cybersecurity events or cyber threat activity was automated through SIEM, with almost 19 percent still doing so manually. "Bringing SAP systems under the remit of cybersecurity solutions can massively reduce the security risks and provide logs to aid any audit processes. Accommodating it within the SIEM, for example, can enable these applications to benefit from automation and continuous monitoring, as well as coordinated threat detection and response with log storage and log management, to assist in subsequent investigations," commented Lintell. "The problem though, is that businesses are trying to fill the gaps in their cybersecurity stacks by devoting more spend to a growing litany of cloud security products, with many toolsets and features going unused or resulting in configuration failure and, ultimately, data breaches that could be avoided," Lintell added. For those businesses looking to invest in cloud security, a near 40 percent of respondents regarded software licensing in the cloud as too expensive, with 24 percent declaring it led to unknown future costs. Lock-in or lack of control with software licensing was also flagged as an issue by 22 percent, along with a lack of user-based licensing options by 14 percent, as the predominant model of charging is data usage-based. Lintell commented - "Businesses must continue to build out their cloud presence, and the market is seeing some natural consolidation as complementary technologies such as SIEM and SOAR converge. There are cost-effective options available, and a SaaS all-in-one solution can limit the costs associated with licensing, particularly if it's based on the number of devices sending data rather than on the volume of your data, which is where businesses are seeing costs escalate".

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HYPER-CONVERGED INFRASTRUCTURE

NetApp Teams with NVIDIA to Accelerate HPC and AI with Turnkey Supercomputing Infrastructure

NetApp | May 11, 2022

NetApp® , a global, cloud-led, data-centric software company, today announced that NetApp EF600 all-flash NVMe storage combined with the BeeGFS parallel file system is now certified for NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD™. The new certification simplifies artificial intelligence (AI) and high-performance computing (HPC) infrastructure to enable faster implementation of these use cases. Since 2018, NetApp and NVIDIA have served hundreds of customers with a range of solutions, from building AI Centers of Excellence to solving massive-scale AI training challenges. The qualification of NetApp EF600 and BeeGFS file system for DGX SuperPOD is the latest addition to a complete set of AI solutions that have been developed by the companies. “The NetApp and NVIDIA alliance has delivered industry-leading innovation for years, and this new qualification for NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD builds on that momentum. As performance and data demands are exploding, NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD, coupled with ONTAP AI platform and DGX Foundry AI service, ensures our customers get the best-in-class model training infrastructure, with the full support of AI industry leaders.” Phil Brotherton, Vice President of Solutions and Alliances at NetApp “Organizations modernizing their business with AI and HPC need performance, flexibility and choice as they architect their infrastructure,” said Charlie Boyle, Vice President of DGX systems at NVIDIA. “Our collaboration with NetApp enables customers building their own AI Centers of Excellence to now choose NetApp storage for their NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD, as well as use the same leading platform available as hosted infrastructure through NVIDIA DGX Foundry.” “We’re thrilled to be working with NetApp and NVIDIA to build an HPC/AI Center of Excellence with NVIDIA DGX systems so applied learning students can experience supercomputing and high-performance computing infrastructure,” said Tonya Witherspoon, Associate Vice President, Industry Engagement & Applied Learning at Wichita State University. “NetApp is a digital fabric anchor of the innovation campus, and we can’t wait to develop the next generation of talent in this exciting space.” Broad Portfolio of AI Infrastructure Solutions NetApp’s portfolio of NVIDIA-accelerated solutions includes ONTAP AI to eliminate guesswork for faster adoption by using a field-proven reference architecture as well as a preconfigured, integrated solution that is easy to procure and deploy in a turnkey manner. Also included is NVIDIA DGX Foundry, which features NVIDIA Base Command software and NetApp Keystone Flex Subscription. This combination provides a world-class hosted infrastructure solution for businesses and their data scientists who need a premium AI development experience without the struggle of building it themselves. With today’s announcement, organizations can also build their AI Centers of Excellence leveraging the power of DGX SuperPOD on premises in combination with NetApp storage. NetApp, in collaboration with NVIDIA, also offers tailored solutions for a variety of industries, including financial services, medicine, manufacturing, retail, higher education and government, and has sponsored and facilitated ideation workshops for customers embarking on AI journeys to accelerate success while mitigating risk. “The AI lifecycle focus has moved up the development stack and away from the infrastructure management, driving the need for converged solutions and services that make it easier for organizations to simplify their infrastructure investments for AI use cases deployments,” said Ritu Jyoti, Group Vice President, AI/Automation Research & Advisory at IDC. “DGX SuperPOD is the latest milestone in a prolific partnership between NetApp and NVIDIA to address this need, and NetApp is well positioned to help customers solve their data management challenges regardless of where it resides.” About NetApp NetApp is a global, cloud-led, data-centric software company that empowers organizations to lead with data in the age of accelerated digital transformation. The company provides systems, software and cloud services that enable them to run their applications optimally from data center to cloud, whether they are developing in the cloud, moving to the cloud, or creating their own cloudlike experiences on premises. With solutions that perform across diverse environments, NetApp helps organizations build their own data fabric and securely deliver the right data, services and applications to the right people—anytime, anywhere.

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DATA STORAGE

AMD Expands Data Center Solutions Capabilities with Acquisition of Pensando

AMD | April 04, 2022

AMD today announced a definitive agreement to acquire Pensando for approximately $1.9 billion before working capital and other adjustments. Pensando’s distributed services platform includes a high-performance, fully programmable packet processor and comprehensive software stack that accelerate networking, security, storage and other services for cloud, enterprise and edge applications. “To build a leading-edge data center with the best performance, security, flexibility and lowest total cost of ownership requires a wide range of compute engines. All major cloud and OEM customers have adopted EPYC processors to power their data center offerings. Today, with our acquisition of Pensando, we add a leading distributed services platform to our high-performance CPU, GPU, FPGA and adaptive SoC portfolio. The Pensando team brings world-class expertise and a proven track record of innovation at the chip, software and platform level which expands our ability to offer leadership solutions for our cloud, enterprise and edge customers.” Dr. Lisa Su, AMD chair and CEO Pensando’s products are already deployed at scale across cloud and enterprise customers, including Goldman Sachs, IBM Cloud, Microsoft Azure and Oracle Cloud. Pensando’s high-performance, highly scalable distributed services platform includes a programmable packet processor that can be distributed throughout a network to efficiently accelerate multiple infrastructure services simultaneously, offloading workloads from the CPU and increasing overall system performance. Combined with Pensando’s system software stack, the platform offers unprecedented performance, scale, flexibility and security. In real-world cloud deployments, Pensando’s solution demonstrates between 8x and 13x greater performance compared to competitive solutions. “We are excited to join the AMD family. Our shared cultures of innovation, excellence and relentless focus on partners and customers make this an ideal combination. Together, we have the talent and tools to deliver on our customers’ vision for the future of computing,” said Pensando CEO Prem Jain. “In less than five years Pensando has assembled a best-in-class engineering team that are experts in building systems together with a rich, deep ecosystem of partners and customers who have currently deployed over 100,000 Pensando platforms into production. Joining together with AMD will help accelerate growth in our core business and enable us to pursue a much larger customer base across more markets.” “Industry leadership is based on catching business model disruptions enabled by new technologies,” said John Chambers, chair of the board of Pensando. "Pensando is built upon strong customer relationships and a solution that is at least two years ahead in cloud, edge and enterprise. For example, the performance and scale of Pensando’s distributed services platform is 8x-13x of the largest cloud provider and uses less power. Pensando’s smart switching architecture has 100x the scale, 10x the performance at one-third the cost of ownership of any comparable products in the enterprise market. Pensando’s leadership position in software-defined cloud, compute, networking, security and storage services as part of the much larger AMD portfolio is in my opinion a perfect fit to shape the data center computing landscape for the next decade.” CEO Prem Jain and the Pensando team will join AMD as part of the Data Center Solutions Group, led by AMD Senior Vice President and General Manager Forrest Norrod. Pensando will remain focused on executing their product and technology roadmaps, now with additional scale to accelerate their business and address growing market opportunities across a broader number of customers. The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter of 2022, following satisfaction of customary closing conditions including approval under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976. Advisors DBO Partners is acting as financial advisor to AMD and Latham & Watkins LLP is serving as its legal advisor. Centerview Partners is acting as financial advisor to Pensando and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati is serving as legal counsel for Pensando. Supporting Customer Quotes Goldman Sachs “Application security is a key issue for the financial services industry and our clients,” said Josh Matheus, managing director, Technology, Goldman Sachs. “Pensando’s east-west security innovation has enabled us to segment our data center network architecture to provide hyper-scale class technology and performance that is unparalleled across the sector.” Hewlett Packard Enterprise “Hewlett Packard Enterprise was an early partner of Pensando because we shared the vision that the world would become far more distributed, and that enterprises would need edge-to-cloud architectures to accelerate their insights and outcomes,” said Antonio Neri, president and CEO, HPE. “Together, we brought the cloud experience to the edge with the industry’s first distributed services switch, and we drove innovation across the data center by integrating future-proof Pensando distributed network and security services into our server portfolio and HPE GreenLake cloud services offering. We look forward to accelerating the development of these technologies with our long-standing partner AMD, whom we congratulate on this strategic acquisition.” Microsoft Azure “Pensando System’s full stack solution, complete with a P4 programmable processor and hyper scale software has enabled Microsoft Azure to rapidly augment its networking and security services improving performance, latency, and scale,” said Girish Bablani, corporate vice president, Microsoft Azure. “We have seen a 40x improvement in overall cloud based connection related performance. Pensando delivered this in less than 12 months. This partnership has enabled a transformational “limitless networking” shift that will ensure our customers have access to the highest performing products and services they expect from Microsoft Azure.” Oracle Cloud “By partnering with Pensando, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) has developed an industry leading Software Defined Networking stack, delivering infrastructure features to Oracle Cloud customers, that have the best price to performance characteristics in the cloud industry,” said Clay Magouyrk, executive vice president, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. “Pensando's P4 programmable platform enables OCI to continuously innovate and deliver secure and inexpensive network services with high velocity. The ability to rapidly add new features using a programmable hardware platform will help OCI leapfrog its cloud competitors. Pensando's engineering team, consisting of many industry experts, has collaborated very successfully with OCI engineering, and have operated at times as OCI’s extension team. OCI views Pensando as a key strategic partner in achieving our goal of being the best infrastructure platform in the cloud industry.” About AMD For more than 50 years AMD has driven innovation in high-performance computing, graphics and visualization technologies. AMD employees are focused on building leadership high-performance and adaptive products that push the boundaries of what is possible. Billions of people, leading Fortune 500 businesses and cutting-edge scientific research institutions around the world rely on AMD technology daily to improve how they live, work and play. For more information about how AMD is enabling today and inspiring tomorrow, visit the AMD (NASDAQ: AMD) website, blog, Facebook and Twitter pages. About Pensando Founded in 2017, Pensando Systems is pioneering distributed computing designed for the New Edge, powering software-defined cloud, compute, networking, storage and security services to transform existing architectures into the secure, ultra-fast environments demanded by next generation applications.

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APPLICATION INFRASTRUCTURE

Sequans Introduces New 4G/5G Cellular IoT Modules Based on its Second-Generation Cat 1 Calliope 2 Chip

Sequans | December 16, 2021

Sequans Communications S.A. announced availability of a new series of Cat 1 IoT modules based on its second generation, LTE Cat 1bis chip, Calliope 2. The new Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules are low-cost, low-power, IoT-optimized solutions that support VoLTE and throughput higher than LTE-M for applications including wearables and hearables with music streaming; smart city/smart home IoT devices such as security cameras, alarm panels, and utility meters; and data aggregators that can require throughput up to several megabits per second. Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules are optimized to support three regional variants covering North America, Japan, and Europe. Advancements in Sequans' Calliope 2 chip technology remove the cost and power consumption barriers that have thus far limited widespread adoption of Cat 1 for IoT. These advancements include 1) higher integration for lower cost, 2) lower power consumption in both active and power-saving modes, near the level of LTE-M, thus extending the battery life of Cat 1 devices significantly, and 3) advanced signal processing techniques that provide superior radio performance. LTE Cat 1 is available worldwide on all cellular networks, including those areas where LTE-M and NB-IoT are not, making it ideal for IoT companies wishing to deploy products globally. "Cat 1 is a truly universal IoT solution," said Georges Karam, Sequans CEO. "With our new Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules, we have made Cat 1 highly suitable for IoT so that it can now support a much wider variety of IoT use cases, including those that need voice. We've reduced the cost and lowered the power consumption by applying the power-saving techniques of LTE-M and NB-IoT, and we've embedded high-level, on-chip security with iSIM support---all of which combine to make our Calliope 2 modules truly future-proof and able to support the evolution from 4G to 5G for many years to come." "We are proud of our partnership with Sequans that expands our cellular IoT module offering that includes RYZ014A alongside our MCUs with 4G cellular connectivity based on Sequans proven Monarch Cat-M1/NB-IoT LTE platform,Therefore, we are excited about Sequans's Calliope 2 Cat 1 platform that supports IoT use cases demanding higher bandwidth, greater mobility, and lower latency." Roger Wendelken, SVP, head of MCU Business, IoT and Infrastructure Business Unit at Renesas "There is an explosion in demand for Cat 1 technology around the world, and even more specifically for the new Cat 1bis technology, increasing the overall LTE Cat 1 market from 132 million units in 2021 to an estimated 200 million units in 2025," said Takeshi Niwa, marketing analyst, TSR. "The great success of Cat 1bis in China, notably in the utility segment, demonstrates the accelerated adoption and deployment of this IoT-focused LTE category, driven by its lower cost compared to first-generation Cat 1 and also by the shutdown of legacy 2G and 3G networks. The availability of platforms like Sequans' Calliope 2 that brings a newer generation of optimized Cat 1 technology into the market will extend this rapid growth to other countries including Japan and the United States." Calliope 2 GC02S1 modules are 5G-ready and compliant with the 3GPP Release 15 massive IoT standard. User application software and interfaces are compatible with Sequans' Monarch 2 LTE-M/NB-IoT platform, allowing easy migration among Cat 1, LTE-M, and NB-IoT massive IoT technologies. Calliope 2 GC02S1 Module Features Supports 3GPP Release 14/15, including PSM and eDRX for ultra-low power consumption Cost-effective support for Cat 1bis data rate: up to 10 Mbps DL and 5 Mbps UL Ultra-small "S1" LGA package Power supply supports 3.1V-5.5V Supports VoLTE and high-quality voice Supports external SIM and eSIM as well as integrated SIM and integrated eSIM Common Criteria (CC) EAL5+ security for iSIM Compatible with Sequans Monarch 2 LTE-M/NB-IoT platform for easy migration among Cat 1, LTE-M, Cat NB1/NB2 "Sequans pioneered Cat 1 technology for IoT and has always recognized its value," said Karam. "We are the only cellular IoT connectivity solutions provider with a strategic product roadmap for Cat 1. Our Calliope 2 chip platform and GC02S1 modules are designed with a clear eye on its particular value for IoT, especially now that 2G and 3G networks are being shut down and 5G is on the horizon." About Sequans Sequans Communications S.A. (NYSE: SQNS) is a leading developer and supplier of cellular IoT connectivity solutions, providing chips and modules for 5G/4G massive and broadband IoT. For 5G/4G massive IoT applications, Sequans provides a comprehensive product portfolio based on its flagship Monarch LTE-M/NB-IoT and Calliope Cat 1 chip platforms, featuring industry-leading low power consumption, a large set of integrated functionalities, and global deployment capability. For 5G/4G broadband IoT applications, Sequans offers a product portfolio based on its Cassiopeia Cat 4/Cat 6 4G and high-end Taurus 5G chip platforms, optimized for low-cost residential, enterprise, and industrial applications. Founded in 2003, Sequans is based in Paris, France with additional offices in the United States.

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