Pure Storage AIRI – CI for AI

Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence (ML/AI) are two of the biggest buzzwords in the tech industry at the moment.  The technologies have wide application, much greater than the often-repeated stories about self-driving cars.  ML/AI solutions can be used in healthcare to improve diagnostics.  It has applications across the financial world, allowing companies to be more… Read more »

Is Your Flash Storage Riding the DRAM Curve?

The rate of growth in flash media is truly incredible.  In ten years, we’ve gone from highly expensive SLC devices to a range of NAND flash media for all requirements.  Flash manufacturers continue to push the boundaries, with 30TB and 100TB drives already on the market.  With no end to this growth in sight, how… Read more »

Why Deterministic Storage Performance is Important

In the days of spinning media, I/O performance was anything but consistent.  When mechanical head movement is involved, response time can vary enormously.  Actually, the variation of I/O isn’t just to do with mechanics as we will discuss in a moment.  However, inconsistent I/O response time is a problem for applications and as tolerances reduce,… Read more »

Samsung Introduces 8TB NF1 NVMe SSDs

Samsung has recently announced an 8TB NF1 format NVMe SSD.  NF1 was originally called NGSFF (Next Generation Small Form Factor) and is intended as a replacement for the existing M.2 format drives.  With 15K and 10K drives disappearing from the market, is it time to accept we should move on from legacy HDD drive sizes?… Read more »

Avoiding the Storage Performance Bathtub Curve

We’re probably all familiar with the concept of the HDD or SSD reliability bathtub curve (figure 1).  This shows how over the lifetime of a drive, failures typically follow a pattern where failure rate increases over time to a steady state, then increases again as the device wears out.  But have you considered the idea… Read more »

The Britpop Battle of Rubrik and Cohesity

Were you a Blur or Oasis fan?  Perhaps you were on the side of Jarvis Cocker and preferred Pulp.  Whatever your choice, the Britpop wars of the 1990s were memorable for building hype around the UK music industry and the idea of Cool Britannia. In lots of ways, the evolution of the data protection industry… Read more »

NVMe over Fabrics – Caveat Emptor?

For the past 20 years, Fibre Channel has been the dominant enterprise data centre storage networking technology.  By this, I mean traditional Fibre Channel, not variants that work over IP or use Converged Ethernet (more on that in a moment).  It’s true that other protocols exist.  Smaller organisations have typically used iSCSI, because of the… Read more »

IDC 1Q2018 Data Shows a Rebound for Storage Hardware Sales

The latest IDC Storage Tracker numbers are out and in the spirit of recent analysis, I’ve put the numbers into my tracking spreadsheet.  The figures represent data for Q1, which now has 12 years’ worth of coverage.  With around 42% growth in the general storage hardware figures and 20% in external storage sales, the numbers… Read more »

Avoiding All-Flash Missing IOPS

We are living in a golden age of storage media, where new products come to market offering ever greater performance with lower latency than previous generations.  Today the hard drive and even early flash drives look positively archaic compared to modern NVMe drives built from 3D-XPoint, capable of delivering hundreds of thousands of IOPS and… Read more »

The Race towards End-to-End NVMe in the Data Centre

The next greatest thing in storage hardware is the move to NVMe.  This is occurring in two ways – conversion of internal designs within shared storage platforms to use NVMe at the “back-end”, and front-end (or host connectivity) using NVMe over Fabrics in some form.  Vendors are starting to use the term “end-to-end” NVMe as… Read more »

Latest
  • 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 »

  • Will TCO Drive Software Defined Storage?

    With the imminent announcement of pricing for VMware Virtual SAN, there has never been a more complex landscape for storage in the enterprise.  But how much of future decisions will be based on technology and how much on understanding the TCO of solutions being deployed? Rumour has it that VSAN will be priced at about… Read more »

  • Project Mystic – EMC & VMware Do Hyper-Converged Infrastructure

    If the rumours are to be believed, EMC and VMware are teaming up to develop their own converged infrastructure solution.  With the imminent release of VMware’s Virtual SAN platform, it appears even the storage “giants” of the industry are accepting that converged infrastructure is a force to be reckoned with. The CRN article above is… Read more »

  • Cost Reduction Is Still On The Agenda for Enterprise Storage

    Dave Merrill has another great article on his “Storage Economist” blog, talking about predictions for 2014.  This one is interesting as it talks about the price erosion versus growth curve that we have seen over the last few years.  He predicts CAPEX spend will actually increase as we move forward into 2014. Managing growth continues… Read more »

  • Changing Consumption Models in Enterprise Storage

    Anyone who is involved in purchasing enterprise or midrange storage will recognise the story being painted in a recent blog post on the Pure Storage website.  The post introduces the concept of “Forever Flash” by first discussing the way in which storage is typically purchased. It’s true that vendors have manipulated the storage refresh cycle… Read more »

  • Build Your Own Scalable All-Flash Array With SVC

    Jim Kelly (The Storage Buddhist blog) has an interesting post talking about using IBM’s San Volume Controller (SVC) in front of their new FlashSystem arrays to create a scale-out all-flash solution.  The overhead is a mere 100 microseconds, which as Jim indicates still makes a hybrid SVC/FlashSystem faster than many array solutions on the market…. Read more »

  • Why EMC Should Have Bought IBM’s Server Business

    By now the news will be out – Lenovo are buying IBM’s X Server business.  But what would happen if things had been different and EMC made the first move? I’m sure many of you are thinking that this strategy would make no sense, but bear with me for a moment.  Firstly let’s look at… Read more »

  • There’s Still Value in Dedicated Arrays – For Now

    Today I managed to write about 90% of a blog post talking about value and traditional storage arrays – train journeys are pretty good for that sort of thing (and for taking your mind off the other passengers).  However having read some of the comments regarding Backblaze’s latest blog post on their drive reliability, I… Read more »

  • Goodbye Virsto

    With effect from 1st January 2014, VMware have announced that their Virsto acquisition is end of life and no longer available for purchase.  The brief statement released by the company indicates that support will continue until September 2015. I first looked at Virsto in 2011 with a brief review in a post that compared the… Read more »