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Manage all workloads with an efficient, scalable Software Defined Environment (SDE)

Imagine an entire IT infrastructure controlled not by hands and hardware, but by software. One in which workloads like big data and analytics are serviced automatically by the most appropriate resource.

A Software Defined Environment (SDE) enables your organisation to deliver IT services in the most efficient way possible. It optimises your compute, storage and networking infrastructure so it can adapt to the type of work required. Shared software management tools dynamically assign and manage workloads, transforming a static IT infrastructure into a workload-aware environment.

Compute. Networks. Management. Storage.

Create the right SDE foundation

Software Defined Storage

Software Defined Networks (SDN)

Software Defined Compute

Software Defined Management


Today’s mobile, social, big data and analytics initiatives demand Software Defined Storage (SDS) solutions to unify storage for all data types with greater flexibility, agility and cost efficiency. SDS automatically manages huge amounts of local and global file and object data, offering breakthrough data access speed, automation and easier administration. These solutions work with existing storage for virtualised storage, allowing multiple systems and applications to share common storage pools, and integrated storage management.

IBM’s storage software is built for new-era workloads, storing data on the highest performance and most cost-effective storage media over time. Soon available as a cloud service on IBM SoftLayer, it can stretch to one billion petabytes – equal to a data centre the size of one million city blocks.

Dynamic data

Watch the video
Expert panel at Boston's Fast Data Forum discusses technical aspects of Software Defined Storage


Software Defined Networking (SDN) offers a next-generation alternative to management at the physical device level, which can be a bottleneck in the data centre.

IBM Software Defined Network for Virtual Environments (SDN VE) creates a virtual network for virtual machines (VMs). This virtual network is de-coupled and isolated from the physical network, much like VMs are separated from the host server hardware. This approach enables virtual networks to be created without any changes to the existing network – meaning it can be wired once.

Provisioning and administration are simplified and automated, and IP and MAC addresses can be reused, permitting logical separation of networks for multi-tenancy. OpenFlow-enabled switches and a programmable network controller provide centralised control. SDN VE incorporates open source components to enable an ecosystem of network services.

SDN market will increase
from $360 million in 2013
to 3.7 billion in 2016

Source: IDC, *SDN Shakes Up the Status Quo in
Datacentre Networking, IDC Says* 19 December 2012

Learn about Software Defined Networking


Software Defined Compute provides workload-aware infrastructure management and optimisation. It opens up a choice of platforms for virtualisation across leading hypervisors. That means IBM PowerVM, PowerVC, z/VM, and KVM, as well as VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V, are all enabled on IBM systems to deliver enterprise-class performance and management support in a virtualised environment. KVM (kernel-based virtual machine) KVM (kernel-based virtual machine), for example, is tuned for Windows and Linux workloads on POWER, System z and PureFlex platforms.

With intelligent resource scheduling, Software Defined Compute helps maximise utilisation, ensure compliance and decrease administrative costs beyond the data centre.


More responsive with
intelligent resource
Source: IBM retail client, September 2013

Monitoring and managing applications and data within your four walls can be difficult enough. Move to a cloud and your IT organisation faces challenges amplified by the Software Defined Environment. Addressing issues of security and compliance, performance monitoring, workload balancing, and application and data integration quickly and cost-effectively can help you realise the potential of a hybrid cloud.

IBM offers hybrid cloud solutions to help you orchestrate the information flow to and from the cloud. You can also extend IBM Tivoli monitoring tools to manage internal services to cloud service management. And the next-generation automation solution, IBM SmartCloud Orchestrator built on OpenStack technology, also uses prepackaged extensions to take your cloud services to the next level.

Up to 3x productivity
improvement based on
integrated management

Source: IBM retail client, September 2013

Watch. Read. Learn more about Software Defined Environment (SDE)

Demystifying Software Defined Environments

Software Defined Environments

An essential introduction to Software Defined Environments: what, how and why an SDE can help your infrastructure be simplified, adaptive and responsive.

Download the eBook now

Software Defined Environments for disruptive IT models

The growth of cloud and big data mean it's time to re-architect IT.

Dynamic resource management for Software Defined Environments

IBM Platform Resource Scheduler uses mature resource scheduling technology to automate OpenStack cloud infrastructure.

Explore the solution brief (855KB)
Learn more about IBM Platform Resource Scheduler

Meeting the challenges of today's business world

Jamie Thomas, IBM GM, talks about how the Software Defined Environment is transforming IT.

Optimising the network for greater performance and user control

Clabby Analytics report on OpenFlow and Software Defined Networks (SDN).

Read the study (567KB)

Is your data centre network holding you back?

Manage today's physical and virtual networks with Software Defined Networking (SDN).

Watch the video (00:01:25)
Learn more about Software Defined Networking

Creating a workload-aware IT infrastructure

Software Defined Environments: The evolution of agile, optimised information technology.

Learn more (419KB)

IBM Software Defined Network for Virtual Environments

Learn how network virtualisation can deliver the benefits of an agile data centre.

Read the paper (527KB)