Bare metal compute: Optionality gold for your multicloud-by-design strategy

If there is one thing developers prize above all else today, it’s the option to run the applications they want where they want, when they want. This is critical in a world increasingly given to distributed computing, where applications run within and outside organizations’ four walls.

And while virtualization technologies have long provided developers the option to run multiple applications on single virtual machines, sometimes developers must run specialized workloads that require greater control over physical hardware without sacrificing the simplicity and agility that comes with a cloud experience.

One way to do that is through bare metal servers. As the name suggests, bare metal systems are free of pre-selected software. Think of bare metal machines as raw land on which developers can build and run applications.

Just as owners can build anything they want on raw land, bare metal servers allow users to pick their operating systems, drivers, containers and other software components with which to build and launch applications.

The naked truth about bare metal

Bare metal servers grant developers direct access to hardware, including CPU, memory and storage, affording them more horsepower for applications that require higher performance and lower latency.

And because developers pick the hardware and software and can configure both to their liking, they can reduce the overhead associated with virtualization technologies and other software that bogs down performance.

The value proposition for bare metal servers is optionality for specialized workloads, including:

Recommendation engines. Your teams might want to build and run a recommendation engine with artificial intelligence or machine learning technologies, which require high CPU and memory usage. Bare metal servers pack the requisite performance and low latency to fuel such applications.

Multiplayer gaming. Bare metal fits the bill for multiplayer gaming applications, many of which require certain hardware configurations or custom GPU capabilities, as well as low latency to perform at an optimal level.

Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI). Bare metal servers afford users more control over configuration, networking and other compute resources, which can be important for enterprise VDI workloads.

Regulated apps. Some apps in regulated sectors such as finance or healthcare may be governed by rules that require dedicated physical servers—bare metal—which may be safer from security vulnerabilities than some shared systems. Plus, you can implement your own security measures and customize them.

Traditional workloads. Bare metal may work better for older apps in instances where they are not supported in virtual environments, or where you want pick your own hypervisor.

Ultimately, bare metal servers give you more control over your computing resources, not unlike how owning a piece of land affords you ownership over the property. Yet traditional bare metal systems only go so far in helping you maximize the value of your IT estate, which has likely evolved rapidly in recent years as you pursued a cloud operating model.

The movement toward an intentional multicloud strategy

The numbers validate the trend towards a cloud operating model: 98% of 261 IT decision makers surveyed said they are running a multicloud environment comprising a mix of on-premises systems, colocation facilities, private and public clouds and even some edge environments, according to an internal Dell survey.

Unfortunately, most of those environments are accumulated over time and are managed by a number of disparate tools. But you can change that and empower your developers to run workloads wherever and whenever they need.

An intentional multicloud by-design approach allows your organization to extend and optimize cloud stacks across diverse IT environments while bringing consistency to storing, protecting and securing data.

This strategy helps streamline IT operations by bringing a cloud operating model to dedicated IT environments, empowering developers with the self-service capabilities to build, test and run their applications. Sometimes that includes raw physical servers, or bare metal.

The value of bare metal consumed via a subscription

With bare metal servers, developers choose their operating system, including Windows and Linux packages, or hypervisor, for virtualized or container-based environments, on which to build their applications. They can then run their workloads across on-premises datacenters, colocation facilities and edge locations.

Via a monthly subscription, your IT staff will access, configure and manage bare metal compute through a single console. A flexible consumption model allows them to order more compute resources as needed and reduce assets as business requirements ebb.

Your IT staff can also control provisioning, lifecycle management and monitoring while facilitating software updates and patches.

With Dell APEX Compute you can subscribe to what you need to run specialized workloads and scale on demand. So you can get the simplicity, agility and control of the cloud experience—on premises.

When it comes to running specialized workloads such as AI, ML and VDI, it’s worth considering the options for how you want to run your infrastructure property. So where are you going to land?

Learn more about our portfolio of cloud experiences delivering simplicity, agility and control as-a-Service: Dell Technologies APEX.

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