HPE Brings Nimble Skynet to 3PAR Arrays

Who doesn’t like the idea of having six 9’s of uptime for their storage?  Availability is a major consideration for any storage, public or private.  Of course, having great availability isn’t the only measure of storage quality.  We also value performance, low latency and consistency.  But making storage behave in a predictable manner isn’t always… Read more »

Accelerating Workloads with NetApp Plexistor

I hadn’t realised that NetApp acquired Plexistor earlier this year.  Depending on which site you look at, the acquisition was a pretty cheap $20m or $32m, based on an A-round investment of around $4.5m in September 2014.  NetApp demonstrated application acceleration using the Plexistor technology at Insight in Berlin last week (see the day 2… Read more »

VMAX – The Mainframe of Storage

This post title may sound a little controversial, but that’s far from my intention.  Anyone who knows me will be aware that I started out in the mainframe era.  I like the mainframe’s reliability and maturity of features, many of which took a long time to arrive in today’s IT world.  However, the mainframe is… Read more »

Storage Field Day 14 Preview: E8 Storage

I initially held off reviewing E8 Storage as we had a podcast scheduled with CEO Zivan Ori, which went live last Friday.  Rather than make assumptions about the technology, I wanted to ensure I was giving some credit to the architecture.  I’m glad I did wait because there were one or two fundamentals I hadn’t… Read more »

Should I Be Backing Up Containers?

The initial answer to the question, “should I be backing up containers”, would appear to be no.  On the face of it, a container is meant to be a temporary instance of an application component and so not long-lived enough to need backing up.  But digging deeper, there is a need for backup – depending… Read more »

With LTO-8, Tape Capacities Show No Sign of Slowing Down

On 17 October 2017, the LTO consortium announced the availability of LTO-8, the next generation of LTO tape technology.  LTO is run by three technology provider companies (TPCs), namely HPE, IBM, and Quantum.  Since the first products were released in 2000, LTO media has increased from 100GB capacity with LTO-1 to 12TB on LTO-8.  The… Read more »

Storage Field Day 14 Preview: Scality

I’ve followed Scality for a long time, through many previous presentations at Tech Field Days (see the further reading below) and at UK events too.  I also recently presented at Scality SDS Day in London talking about the future of Software Defined Storage.  So what is object storage and what do Scality do? Object Storage… Read more »

OK, Google – Where are my Docs?

Hallowe’en turned out to be a real fright for some Google Docs users yesterday as access to content was blocked due to a buggy code push.  The result was that certain content was flagged to have broken Google’s Terms and Conditions.  As widely reported, for some users this could have been a real issue, had… Read more »

Storage Field Day 14 Preview: EMC

Update: Looks like we’ll be seeing XtremIO again!  (link) It’s over a year since I did a full Tech Field Day event.  Where does the time go?  Next week I’m attending Storage Field Day 14, based in the Silicon Valley area.  Compared to most events, this one looks (at first glance) relatively quiet, with only… Read more »

Building Private Cloud Storage – HCI or Dedicated Array?

Last week Martin and I had a great conversation with Kieran Harty, CTO of Tintri Inc.  Tintri sells a range of storage appliances that deliver VM-focused shared storage.  Rather than talk exclusively about products, we discussed how storage arrays are evolving to meet the needs of private cloud. Requirements The NIST definition of public cloud… Read more »

  • EMC takes on Google and Amazon with Elastic Cloud Storage

    One of the more interesting announcements from EMC World 2014 last week was a new platform from EMC called Elastic Cloud Storage (ECS).  ECS is the “productisation” of the previously announced Project Nile, which I discussed last year.  At the time, the indications were that Nile was some kind of packaged VNX solution sold in… Read more »

  • Has NetApp Reached a Strategic Inflection Point?

    Chris Mellor recently covered IDC’s quarterly disk shipment report, which measures the market leaders in enterprise storage.  As Chris points out, NetApp continues to decline, with reduced revenue over the last three quarters.  I’ve talked for some time about NetApp reaching an inflection point with Data ONTAP, their storage array operating system.  Has the legacy of… Read more »

  • VMware’s Virtual and Physical SAN Misdirection

    I almost fell off my chair laughing as I read this post by Chuck Hollis that talks about using vSphere VSAN (Virtual SAN) with external storage arrays.  Is it the rantings of someone clinging onto the vestiges of a former life, or perhaps it’s a veiled way for VMware to start unravelling their failed VVOL… Read more »

  • XtremIO: What You Need to Know (Updated)

    With much anticipation, EMC has finally gone GA on their all-flash array, XtremIO, based on the former company of the same name they acquired in May 2012.  The eighteen months that have elapsed since then has seen the rise of an number of competitors and a lot of rumour, discussion and teaser presentations from EMC… Read more »

  • Storage QoS In The Cloud

    Last year I did some research and wrote up a couple of posts on Cloud Compute performance.  One feature that seems to get left out somewhat is storage I/O performance; the cloud offerings talk about capacity, but rarely reference performance. Recently, I reviewed the options available from the major providers and found two new storage performance offerings…. Read more »

  • Is Google Drive Too Late to the Party?

    Like many people, the other week I downloaded and installed Google Drive.  This is the long-awaited competitor to services like Dropbox and Microsoft’s SkyDrive.  It offers free online storage with the ability to upgrade to higher capacity at a cost.  Dropbox and the various other lookalikes have been around for some time, so is Google… Read more »

  • NetApp: The Inflexibility of Flexvols

    I’ve just been reading up on Data ONTAP 8.0 as part of some ongoing work I’m doing.  You may be aware that version 8.0 of the filer operating system brings two major features; 64-bit support and the (sort of) integration of the Spinnaker code to create the multi-node version of ONTAP (called cluster mode). The… Read more »

  • Enterprise Computing: Why Thin Provisioning Is Not The Holy Grail for Utilisation

    Thin Provisioning (Dynamic Provisioning, Virtual Provisioning, or whatever you prefer to call it) is being heavily touted as a method of reducing storage costs.  Whilst at the outset it seems to provide some significant storage savings, it isn’t the answer for all our storage ills. What is it?   Thin Provisioning (TP) is a way of… Read more »