[caption id="attachment_4612" align="aligncenter" width="590"] In theory at least, Cisco's hardware (including x86-architecture servers) will speed Pentaho's analytics.[/caption] Pentaho and Cisco are partnering on a data-analytics platform built on Cisco’s Unified Computing System (also known as Cisco UCS). As with many of its bigger rivals, including Dell and IBM, Cisco has focused in recent years on converging many of its technologies onto consolidated platforms. Cisco’s Unified Computing System merges network, computing, storage access and virtualization into such a platform. Pentaho’s Business Analytics for Big Data, which includes software for everything from data ingestion to visualization to analysis and prediction, will be paired with the Unified Computing System’s IT infrastructure. Pentaho markets the platform as an easier way for companies to work with Apache Hadoop, a popular framework for helping data analysts crunch massive datasets. (A recent Pentaho survey found that more than 70 percent of its new customers deployed Hadoop, with the remaining 30 percent split between NoSQL and analytic databases.) Hardware-wise, the combined solution includes Cisco UCS 6200 Series fabric interconnects, Cisco UCS 2200 Series fabric extenders, Cisco UCS C240 M3 rack-mounted servers based on Intel Xeon E-2600 series processors, the Cisco UCS P81E virtual interface card, and the Cisco UCS manager. In theory, the combination of converged hardware and x-86 architecture servers will streamline the effort necessary for crunching massive amounts of data via Pentaho’s software platform. “This joint effort makes Pentaho available to the expanding group of Cisco’s customers that is constantly looking for new ways to help streamline and simplify data center operations,” Eddie White, Executive Vice President of Business Development at Pentaho, wrote in a Sept. 19 statement. SourceForge interviewed Pentaho co-founders James Dixon and Doug Moran in April, mostly about the challenges and opportunities inherent in developing open-source B.I. software. At that time, they talked about how the future of their platform lies in developing new functionality as plug-ins, as well as encouraging the community to help build out connectivity and support. “And we’re also adding, to help foster and encourage this development of plugins, we’re rolling out a marketplace where you can discover plugins that are available,” Dixon said at the time. “Our connectivity to things like SalesForce.com, SAP, those were contributed by community members.” Evidently, Pentaho also feels its future rests on partnerships with big tech firms like Cisco, as well.   Image: Pentaho