Cisco has scored its first major customer for its unified computing system in Savvis, a hosting provider that’s building out a computing cloud for enterprise users. Savvis, which has been releasing details over the last few months on its Symphony computing cloud, is creating an infrastructure-as-a-service offering that will have three different service tiers, from a basic level to one that provides a virtual private network that can guarantee privacy of data as it moves between servers inside the Symphony cloud.
The Symphony cloud is still in beta and is slated to be generally available by the spring of next year. Savvis’ purchase of UCS gear makes sense given that its cloud relies on Cisco switches as well as VMware for its hypervisor and some management capabilities. Still, it’s a vote of confidence in Cisco’s hardware and the first non-Cisco shop to get behind the UCS servers in a big way. CSC has said it’s looking at Cisco gear to underlie its cloud computing offerings, but hasn’t formally announced anything yet.
Savvis is not, however, buying the gear through the new services division created in November to sell the combined Cisco, EMC and VMware building blocks for enterprise clouds. A Cisco spokesman said that the EMC gear did not fall within the parameters of the Savvis cloud, which may come as a relief for the server vendors that Cisco is displacing, as they still get to sell a storage box. For more on the Cisco triple threat check out our column on the topic at GigaOM Pro (subscription required).