An Interview with Charlie Kavaloski, Director of IT at Bauer Built Tire
We recently caught up with Bauer Built Tire’s IT director, Charlie Kavaloski, to hear what’s happening at his company and find out if he is attending .NEXT this year. Here are some of the highlights of our conversation.
Q. How are the Nutanix systems performing for Bauer Built Tire?
We purchased our first two Nutanix NX-2000 systems four years ago during a forklift replacement of our entire IT environment. We went from non-virtualized, single Dell servers, to virtualizing everything with VMware. Instead of choosing traditional blades, compute, and SAN storage, we made the decision to adopt web-scale and hyperconverged infrastructure with Nutanix. In the four years we’ve been running all of our production workloads on Nutanix, we’ve had zero downtime.
We purchased a third Nutanix node for production and disaster recovery in January of 2016, and placed it at our colocation facility in Minnesota. We are running our Cisco Call Manager software on that system and are planning to move our Citrix server farm and a couple of other email services over too in the next few months.
Our plan is to run Nutanix as our primary mode of storage and compute for the foreseeable future. It is difficult to predict what workloads we will need to support over the next ten years, or exactly where we are headed as a company, but my goal is to support that growth as flexibly as possible. With its easy scalability, high performance, web-scale technology and everything else that Nutanix can do, it’s the perfect solution for us.
Q. Have you had a chance to evaluate AHV (Nutanix native hypervisor) yet?
We were very early adopters of Nutanix, so our 4-year old systems are not compatible with AHV. That’s not actually a bad thing, it’s just another great reason to upgrade to the newer Nutanix systems with more features. When we upgrade the NX-2000 systems this winter, we are planning to move to AHV to avoid paying VMware’s high licensing costs. I am fairly neutral on the VMware hypervisor as a whole, but from what I have seen and heard about AHV, it’s as good—if not better for us—so that’s our plan.
Q. Do you ever serve as a reference for other companies evaluating Nutanix?
I have received a lot of reference calls over the past four years. I love telling people about all of the benefits of hyperconverged infrastructure, how it fits in our organization, how good the Nutanix Support organization is, and how well the engineers take care of their customers. There are so many good things to say about Nutanix, and I’m always happy to help spread that message.
Q. Will you be attending .NEXT this year?
Yes, I am looking forward to it. Since Nutanix is a visionary in the Enterprise Cloud space, I want to see what they are up to and where they’re headed. It’s a large community now, big enough to have its own convention. I want to hear more about Acropolis and see how it’s being adopted and evolving. It is interesting to watch the momentum Nutanix has and get a sense of what other customers are doing. I also want to reconnect with some of the Nutanix folks I‘ve known from the beginning—back when everybody was working in a conference room on a card table with a folding chair. It will be fun to catch up with everyone at .NEXT!
Come visit us at .NEXT
Nutanix .NEXT is scheduled for June 20-22, 2016 at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. For more information and to register for the user conference, please visit: www.nutanix.com/next/