In it, Chris Mellor talks about HP producing an Oracle Exadata competitor by integrating the use of Violin Memory’s all-SSD storage array. Folks may remember that I predicted exactly this set up in the following post:
While attending an HP event last year it became obvious to me that (for some customers at least) the ability to include a solid state array in a virtualised infrastructure would provide the perfect opportunity to deliver high performance virtual machines. There’s a lot of talk around at the moment about how virtualisation moves on from the 30% of low hanging server fruit that has been virtualised to date. I think a combination of SSD-based storage and a virtual platform can be one of the catalysts to improve those “hard to virtualise” configurations.
So imagine, in 3U you can provision up to 10TB of storage with 200,000 random write IOPS. With a decent blade server to match, this could easily start to virtualise those difficult applications. Now of course the fly in the ointment here will be cost; does the TCO for this kind of a configuration justify the expense? In addition, would it be acceptable to place many high performance (and presumably high importance) applications on the same infrastructure?
I’d love to see HP producing some TCO materials about these kinds of configurations. In my opinion, using SSD arrays in this fashion has to be the way forward, rather than placing SSDs into what are currently essentially legacy architectures where the low latency response I/O is inevitably hampered by I/O from traditional disks.
One other thought. HP definitely have technology based on memristors under development. Is the use of Violin Memory a stopgap until this technology could be brought to the market? Even if it is, this announcement could make Violin one of the hottest properties of 2011.