Software Defining Your Storage

There is a lot of talk in the technology industry of “software defining”, the idea that elements of our technology stack, traditionally based on a hardware appliance can be abstracted from it and made available as a software-only appliance that can be installed on any hardware.  But why? Wouldn’t you rather your key assets were… Read more »

The Renaissance of Data ONTAP

The genesis of NetApp, initially known as Network Appliance is ONTAP or Data ONTAP.  NetApp developed the ONTAP “storage operating system” to run on their original filer platforms.  It’s amazing to think the underlying technology from 1992 still drives the majority of their storage platforms today.  How has ONTAP managed to survive so long and… Read more »

The need for self-describing secondary data

As primary data becomes ever more portable, we need to ensure that our backups have the same levels of flexibility to be moved, stored and used wherever we need them.  Why is this important, and what features should we look out for? Data Protection in a Multi-Cloud World The Need for APIs in Storage and… Read more »

Can the WekaIO Matrix file system be faster than DAS?

There’s a standard adage in the storage industry.  If you want lower latency and better performance, then move storage closer to the processor.  Typically, this means implementing DAS – Direct Attached Storage – and eliminating a shared network.  So how can WekaIO Matrix, a distributed scale-out file system claim to be better than DAS yet… Read more »

Pure Storage ObjectEngine for Flash-based Backup

Back in August 2018, Pure Storage announced the acquisition of StorReduce, a start-up company with a nifty data de-duplication engine.  That technology has been put to good use and now appears in ObjectEngine, a backup-to-flash data protection solution. StorReduce As previously highlighted, I looked at StorReduce in 2015 and was quite positive about the technology. … Read more »

VAST Data launches with new scale-out storage platform

“Build it and they will come” they say, or at least, something similar.  So, Vast Data has built a new scale-out storage platform and hopes that customers will flock to adopt it.  It’s 2019 – do we need another scale-out storage architecture? Amelioration I’m sure when we reflect on products that have gone before, we… Read more »

Pure Storage announces NVMe-oF support for FlashArray

Pure Storage recently announced support for NVMe over Fabrics on FlashArray.  The technology is implemented by an upgrade to Purity (the platform O/S) and installation of RDMA-capable Ethernet NICs.  Pure has chosen to go with Ethernet as the first NVMe fabric offering, while other vendors have chosen the Fibre Channel route.  How has this choice… Read more »

Exploiting secondary data with NDAS from NetApp

Occasionally a technology leaps out at you, not for the current capabilities, but for potential future value.  That’s a feeling I had when I heard about NDAS or NetApp Data Availability Services.  At first glance, NDAS looks like nothing more than a simple backup-to-cloud tool, but dig into how the data is managed and you… Read more »

Podcast #3 – Chris & Matt review the SFD18 presenters

Here’s a little extra podcast Matt Leib and I recorded this afternoon in preparation for Storage Field Day 18.  You can tell this wasn’t recorded in a studio, but actually Matt’s hotel room!  Matt preps coffee in his mini-Nespresso device while we discuss each of the presenting vendors. The discussion is ad-hoc, off the cuff… Read more »

The Need for APIs in Storage and Data Protection

The idea of programmatically managing infrastructure provides capabilities to scale, manage and control technology much more effectively than can be achieved through manual methods.  But the use of APIs means so much more than simply providing an interface that can be automated.  APIs introduce greater efficiency and accountability into storage platforms.  We look at how… Read more »

Latest
  • Change Control in Cloud Services

    The post mortem summary on Microsoft’s most recent Azure outage is available and online here.  The content makes for interesting reading.  To summarise, the outage occurred as a result of an unanticipated code error but was exacerbated by the accelerated rollout made by an employee who hadn’t adequately assessed the risks of pushing the change… Read more »

  • What Next for Storage in 2015?

    Sometimes it’s hard to believe that there’s anything more to achieve in data storage.  Surely things are pretty much complete; we have the ability to store vast quantities of data reliably and each year the per unit cost of storage continues to decline.  So as 2015 rolls in, is there anything left to achieve?  What… Read more »

  • 2014 in Review

    As we approach the start of a new working year, it’s time to take the almost traditional and obligatory review of the year hence.  So, what made the news and how does that provide us insight on the year to come? Big Trends There were certainly some interesting developments in storage and the wider IT… Read more »

  • Understanding IDC’s Flash Sales Figures

    IDC recently produced a report showing the sales and shipment of all-flash and hybrid storage arrays.  The report shows EMC as top dog and not surprisingly, EMC have provided a free downloadable excerpt, available here.  I always like to dig into numbers into a little more detail as you can start to uncover interesting trends… Read more »

  • NetApp Integrated EVO: RAIL – A Triumph of Marketing Over Common Sense

    I suspect I wasn’t the only one last week who was scratching his head at the latest idea from NetApp which sees them offering a VMware EVO: RAIL solution that incorporates Data ONTAP filer technology.  In case that last statement is unclear to you, yes, NetApp are suggesting that EVO: RAIL, the solution that uses… Read more »

  • HDS & 3PAR Top In Gartner’s General Purpose High End Arrays

    It’s HP Discover week in Barcelona and so an appropriate time to talk about Gartner’s recent Critical Capabilities for General-Purpose, High-End Storage Arrays report.  Chris Mellor covered the details in a recent article, which included a chart of the top players.  Hitachi (through both the HDS and HP models) comes out top with their VSP… Read more »

  • Flash Tiering – HP 3PAR Adaptive Cache

    I recently completed a white paper for HPE on a new feature in the 3PAR StoreServ platform called Adaptive Cache.  In disk-based 3PAR systems, flash SSD devices can be used to augment the DRAM cache.  This acts like a second level of memory tiering by cascading cached pages to flash rather than simply flushing them… Read more »

  • Avere Systems Releases Virtual Edge Filer To Deliver Data to Compute

    It’s been a little over three years since I first was introduced to Avere Systems at what was SNW Europe (now Powering The Cloud) in Frankfurt.  At the time, the positioning on their FXT hardware platform was as an edge “caching” filer to allow core NAS assets to be extended to branch offices without sacrificing… Read more »

  • VSAN, VSA or Dedicated Array?

    I don’t normally write blog posts that follow up on other people’s discussions however having seen some of the tweets relating to Nigel’s blog post on VSA versus VSAN, I realised my comments on the subject would stretch to an entire post of their own.  So here it is. The discussion (although I haven’t listened… Read more »