Visa leans on virtualization to transform data centers

Visa looking to replicate data center success across globe

"We do use mainframe, nonstandard systems" for data center orchestration, he says. "Tandem/HP's implementation, IBM, Sun's. . . . We've got every major vendor that will put us in a competitive place moving forward."

Visa is also a Cisco Catalyst switch shop that doesn't yet require the 1.7Tbps capabilities of the Nexus 7000 switch. Indeed, Lewis cautioned that, with virtualization coming back into vogue thanks to newer players like Cisco, adopting a buzzy technology for technology's sake is not in the Visa blueprint.

"Virtualization does nothing for you unless you have the integrated processes, the organization, the commitments from various partners and vendors that you work with to address pricing methodologies, contracts," Lewis says. "There are a number of aspects that will lead toward our full data-center strategy. In itself, it does nothing without the other disciplines."

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