Richard Fichera

Vice President, Principal Analyst

Author Insights

Blog

Checking In With Cisco UCS – Continued Momentum, Decoupled From Corporate Malaise

Richard Fichera November 22, 2010
I met recently with Cisco’s UCS group in San Jose to get a quick update on sales and maybe some hints about future development. The overall picture is one of rapid growth decoupled from whatever pressures Cisco management has cautioned about in other areas of the business. Overall, according to recent disclosure by Cisco CEO […]
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Oracle Releases Solaris 11 — Game Changer Or Place Keeper?

Richard Fichera November 18, 2010
Oracle recently announced the availability of Solaris 11 Express, the first iteration of its Solaris 11 product cycle. The feature set of this release is along the lines promised by Oracle at their August analyst event this year, including: Scalability enhancements to set it up for future systems with higher core counts and requirements to […]
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Lies, Damned Lies, And Statistics . . . And Benchmarks

Richard Fichera November 14, 2010
I have been working on a research document, to be published this quarter, on the impact of 8-socket x86 servers based on Intel’s new Xeon 7500 CPU. In a nutshell, these systems have the performance of the best-of-breed RISC/UNIX systems of three years ago, at a substantially better price, and their overall performance improvement trajectory […]
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Fujitsu – Ready To Play In North America?

Richard Fichera November 5, 2010
Fujitsu? Who? I recently attended Fujitsu’s global analyst conference in Boston, which gave me an opportunity to check in with the best kept secret in the North American market. Even Fujitsu execs admit that many people in this largest of IT markets think that Fujitsu has something to do with film, and few of us […]
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Walking The Walk – Mobile Devices And The Infrastructure & Operations Group

Richard Fichera October 29, 2010
Recently I’ve been living a double life. By day a mild-mannered functionary for Forrester Research, helping I&O professionals cope with the hurly-burly of our rapid-paced world. By night I have been equipping myself with an iPhone, iPad and trying out any other mobile devices I can get my hands on, including Dell Stream, Android phones, […]
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IBM Acquires BNT – Nuclear War In The Converged Infrastructure World?

Richard Fichera October 15, 2010
There has been a lot of press about IBM’s acquisition of BNT (Blade Network Technologies) focusing on the economics and market share of BNT as a competitor to Cisco and HP’s ProCurve/3Com franchise. But at its heart the acquisition is more about defending and expanding a position in the emerging converged server, networking, and storage […]
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IBM – Ramping Up x86 Investment

Richard Fichera October 12, 2010
I recently spent a day with IBM’s x86 team, primarily to get back up to speed on their entire x86 product line, and partially to realign my views of them after spending almost five years as a direct competitor. All in all, time well spent, with some key takeaways: IBM has fixed some major structural […]
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Infrastructure & Operations Communities Are Coming

Richard Fichera September 29, 2010
Look for the new "Community" tab on the Forrester site. This is your access to a community of like-minded peers. You can use the community to start and participate in discussions, share ideas and experiences, and help guide Forrester Research for your role. The success or failure of this community effort depends largely on you. […]
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Little Servers For Big Applications At Intel Developer Forum

Richard Fichera September 21, 2010
I attended Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in San Francisco last week, one of the premier events for anyone interested in microprocessors, system technology, and of course, Intel itself. Among the many wonders on display, including high-end servers, desktops and laptops, and presentations related to everything Cloud, my attention was caught by a pair of small […]
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Interesting Hardware Products At VMworld: NEC FT x86 Servers And Xsigo I/O Virtualization

Richard Fichera September 15, 2010
Not a big surprise, but VMworld was overwhelmingly focused on software. I was concerned that great hardware might get lost in the software noise, so I looked for hardware standouts using two criteria: They had to have some relevance to virtualization. Most offerings could check this box – we were at WMworld, after all. They […]
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Oh No! Not Another VMworld Blog Post!

Richard Fichera September 8, 2010
It was reported that sometime over the past weekend the number of tweets and blogs about VMworld exceeded Plankk’s limit (postulated by blogger Marvin Plankk, now confined to an obscure institution in an unidentified state with more moose than people), and quietly coalesced into an undifferentiated blob of digital entropy as a result of too many semantically […]
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Wall Street Pilgrimage – Infrastructure & Operations At The Top

Richard Fichera August 31, 2010
A Wall Street infrastructure & operations day I recently had an opportunity to spend a day in three separate meetings with infrastructure & operations professionals from three of the top six financial service firms in the country, and discuss topics ranging from long-term business and infrastructure strategy to specific likes and dislikes regarding their Tier-1 […]
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Oracle Cancels OpenSolaris – What’s The Big Deal?

Richard Fichera August 30, 2010
There has been turmoil and angst recently in the 0pen source community of late over Oracle’s decision to cancel OpenSolaris. Since this community can be expected to react violently anytime something is taken out of open source, the real question is whether this action has any impact on real-world IT and operations professionals. The short […]
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Dell – Ready To Challenge HP And IBM For The High Ground?

Richard Fichera August 26, 2010
Historically, the positioning of Dell versus its two major competitors for high-value enterprise business, particularly where it involved complex services and the ability to deliver deeply integrated infrastructure and management stacks, has been as sort of an also ran. Competitors looked at Dell as a price spoiler and a channel for standard storage and networking […]
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Will Plug-In Hybrids Change The Data Center?

Richard Fichera August 23, 2010
In a recent discussion with a group of infrastructure architects, power architecture, especially UPS engineering, was on the table as a topic. There was general agreement that UPS systems are a necessary evil, cumbersome and expensive beasts to put into a DC, and a lot of speculation on alternatives. There was general consensus that the […]
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The Need For Speed – GPUs Emerge As Mainstream Accelerators

Richard Fichera August 16, 2010
It’s probably fair to say that the computer community is obsessed with speed. After all, our people buy computers to solve problems, and generally the faster the computer, the faster the problem gets solved. The earliest benchmark that I have seen is published in “High Speed Computing Devices, Engineering Resource Devices, McGraw Hill, 1950.” They […]
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Benchmarking Consolidation & Virtualization – Variables and Distractions

Richard Fichera August 12, 2010
I’ve been getting a number of inquiries recently regarding benchmarking potential savings from consolidating multiple physical servers onto a smaller number of servers using VMs, usually VMware. The variations in the complexity of the existing versus new infrastructures, operating environments, and applications under consideration make it impossible to come up with consistent rules of thumb, […]
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SHARE – Rooted In The Past, Looking To The Future

Richard Fichera August 5, 2010
I spoke today at SHARE’s biannual conference, giving a talk on emerging data center architectures, x86 servers, and internal clouds. SHARE is an organization which describes itself as “representing over 2,000 of IBM's top enterprise computing customers.” In other words, definitely a mainframe geekfest, as described by one attendee. I saw hundreds of people around […]
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Oracle Confirms Solaris Support On Third-Party Hardware

Richard Fichera July 30, 2010
Yesterday Oracle announced that both HP and Dell would certify Solaris on their respective lines of x86 servers, and that Oracle would offer support for Solaris on these systems. Except for IBM, who was conspicuously missing from the announcement, it's hard to find any losers in this arrangement. HP and Dell customers get the assurance […]
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Does SPARC Have A Future?

Richard Fichera July 28, 2010
I have received a number of inquiries on the future of SPARC and Solaris. Sun’s installed base was already getting somewhat nervous as Sun continued to self-destruct with a series of bad calls by management, marginal financial performance, and the cancellation  of its much-touted “Rock” CPU architecture. Coming on top of this long series of […]
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