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June 23, 2020

HPE Unveils ‘Ezmeral’ Platform for Next-Gen Apps

Hewlett Packard Enterprises today debuted Ezmeral, which is both a new brand as well as a platform for running containerized AI, machine learning, and analytics workloads. HPE says Ezmeral will let customers take their apps just about anywhere, from the edge to private data centers and the public cloud too.

It was just three months ago, you will recall, that HPE debuted its Container Platform, which provides a bare-metal platform for running applications in Docker containers. The HPE Container Platform was based largely on the EPIC platform that it obtained in its BlueData acquisition, but bolstered with a Kubernetes orchestrator.

That product also featured tech from HPE’s MapR acquisition, most prominently the MapR File System, which supports HDFS as well as POSIX, NFS, and S3-compatible data storage. This allowed the HPE Container Platform to be the vehicle for running not only Hadoop/Spark-style applications, but also for hosting traditional on-prem enterprise applications as well as newer cloud-resident applications too.

But it’s been a long three months, thanks to COVID-19 and political strife, and so perhaps it’s not surprising that HPE has chosen to take another tact and get a fresh start by renaming its flagship containerization offering the HPE Ezmeral Container Platform.

A key component of the HPE Ezmeral Container Platform is KubeDiretor, a piece of software developed by HPE that allows stateful applications that required persistent storage to run on Kubernetes. HPE is sharing the code for KubeDirector to the open source community through the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). It’s also working with the CNCF with two other open source projects, including the Secure Production Identity Framework for Everyone (SPIFFE) and SPIFFE Runtime Environment (SPIRE).

In addition to the HPE Ezmeral Container Platform, HPE has re-imagined the MapR Data Fabric as the HPE Ezmeral Data Fabric. It is also shipping HPE Ezmeral ML Ops, which provides DevOps rigor to machine learning and AI workflows.

All of these products can run on any infrastructure, including HPE or non-HPE servers, any cloud, any private data center, or the edge. These products are currently being beta tested on HPE’s Green Lake cloud service, with general availability expected in the fourth quarter.

“What we wanted to do was bring all our software assets under HPE Ezmeral, so we can actually offer to customers the solutions that give them containerized applications, optimally mange the environment, introduce control, and provide enterprise-grade security,” says Kumar Sreekanti, the CTO and head of software for HPE, as well as the co-founder of BlueData. “It supports a range of use cases, including application modernization, AI, ML and analytics workloads.”

The name “Ezmeral,” by the way, is derived from the Spanish word for emerald, or esmeralda. “Emeralds are believed to confer power and the ability to predict future events, strengthen intelligence, ease stress, and enhance immunity,” HPE says in its press release. “The transformation of raw emerald to a cut and polished stone to reveal something more beautiful and valuable is analogous to the digital transformation journey our customers are on.”

HPE is hosting its HPE Discover virtual conference this week. Antonio Neri is expected to give a keynote address later this morning. The company is making a slew of other announcements, including some around its Green Lake initiative.

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HPE Folds BlueData into AI Offerings