Nutanix’s Project Beacon: Build once, run anywhere

The data centre is not the centre of data anymore. Instead data has become distributed due to an explosion in applications, among other things.

During a pre-briefing to Nutanix’s NEXT conference in early May, Lee Caswell, SVP of product and solutions marketing, shared about how they had watched customers who had gone to cloud for speed and were now “thinking about how to optimally locate their data and applications over time in the hybrid multi-cloud environment that they have inherited.”

Lee pointed out that what Nutanix does is uniquely suited for edge deployments, and that the vendor had recognised the opportunity to have a common software-defined architecture that spans data centres and public clouds, and that can help address the pace of application change.

For businesses, this means they have the flexibility of building applications once and having them run anywhere.

“This has been a goal for the past 20 years. How does one make it happen?”

Project Beacon: addressing lock-in?

Lee talked about two product announcement during the NEXT conference, and that the third would be a project announcement which is different from products by virtue of having a three year vision of how Nutanix’s “influence” would be expanding.

Project Beacon proposes to decouple the data services and the application services from underlying infrastructure, giving businesses flexibility of building apps on a PaaS or platform-as-a-Service cloud and be able to run that app anywhere.

“Now, what we have done is expanded our reach from hundreds of thousands of customers who use data centres and edge servers, to millions of cloud users who use cloud and hyperscale infrastructure.”


According to Lee, Nutanix has a long history of integrating solutions and then “breaking it open” for customers as they refine and expand the amount of choice that customers can have.

“Our database service provides provisioning, patching, security for databases and at scale. It has been tied to our underlying infrastructure, till now.

“(With Project Beacon) we are opening it up for customers to talk to us about how to prioritise the new services that would make sense for them to go full into a multi-cloud environment over time,” he concluded.