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 »

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 »

NetApp buys into Kubernetes Orchestration with StackPointCloud

In September 2018, NetApp acquired a little-known cloud services company called StackPointCloud.  StackPoint offers a managed Kubernetes service that enables customers to build Kubernetes clusters across a range of public cloud providers.  Why would NetApp want to acquire this technology and where could it be used? Containerisation First of all, let’s take a step back… Read more »

Performance Benchmarks: Reading Between the Lines

As we move into 2019, storage performance becomes more important than ever.  At the media level, vendors are pushing the boundaries with fast solid-state technologies like NAND flash and 3D-Xpoint.  These products provide performance capabilities we’ve never seen before.  Storage system vendors then take components and build storage solutions, either as bespoke hardware or part… Read more »

Building a modern data platform – what have we learned?

This is a guest post by Paul Stringfellow from Gardner Systems and was originally posted at Building a modern data platform – what have we learned? where you can also find Paul’s “Tech Interviews” podcast. As I reach the end of this series, it raises the question “what have we learned?”. If you’ve read through it all,… Read more »

NooBaa is acquired by Red Hat

I was interested to see that Red Hat recently decided to acquire NooBaa, a start-up developing an object storage platform.  What makes this story interesting is not the NooBaa technology itself, but rather that Red Hat is acquiring yet another storage platform to complement those it already owns.  Why add another to the list? NooBaa… Read more »

Processors back under the spotlight for 2019

This is just a quick post to highlight the developments we’re seeing in processors at the moment.  Intel has announced Foveros, enabling more efficient component stacking.  AMD has EPYC, with more PCIe performance for external peripherals like storage.  And of course, we’re seeing a whole host of ARM processors being put into public cloud.  Let’s… Read more »

Thoughts from Hitachi NEXT 2018

Earlier this year I was invited to Hitachi NEXT in lovely San Diego.  As part of my trip, I took the time to learn a little more about some of the technology Hitachi has been working on and bringing to market either directly through Hitachi Ltd or Hitachi Vantara.  You may remember that Hitachi Vantara… Read more »

Elastifile Cloud File Service Now Available on Google Cloud

Elastifile has announced the availability of a fully managed scale-out file service for Google Cloud.  This is more than just another marketplace offering.  The company’s Cloud File Service is now fully integrated into the Google Cloud ecosystem.  Storage is configured through GCP APIs and GUIs and billed by Google based on consumption.  This is a… Read more »

Western Digital Redefines DRAM Caching

In a recent press release, Western Digital announced the release of an interesting if not curious solution for extending DRAM with fast storage.  The Ultrastar DC ME200 extends server DRAM using proprietary caching software in an attempt to fully exploit the capabilities of modern multi-core processors.  In an age where in-memory computing is increasing in… Read more »

Latest
  • The Maturing of Flash Storage

    It’s interesting reading the comments that we’re added to my post of last week, discussing the summary of all flash arrays, initially started by Vaughn Stewart and continued by HP storage guy Calvin Zito. Unsurprisingly, most of the negativity came from EMC and their resellers, who are defending a late entrance into the market.  They… 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 »

  • Avere Systems Embraces Cloud with Cloud NAS

    Cloud storage is a popular subject these days, with some good and some bad examples out there.  The appeal is obvious – data needs to be retained somewhere, whether it is of the primary, backup or archive flavour.  Being able to do that at low cost (especially when a large percentage of that data is… Read more »

  • 6TB HGST Helium Drive Continues Move to Two-Tier Storage

    Over the years, hard disk drives have steadily increased their speeds, peaking at 15,000 RPM, with only a fleeting attempt by Western Digital to push the boundaries up to 20K.  As we know, at that point solid-state drives became more viable than faster HDDs and manufacturers have reined back their aspirations.  Recently we’ve seen more… Read more »

  • NFS Vendor Benchmarks – Caveat Emptor

    This week we’ve seen an update on NFS benchmarks with Hitachi announcing their latest results (via Hu’s blog) using HUS File and FMDs (Flash Module Drives).  Of course Hitachi wouldn’t be announcing if they hadn’t beaten EMC with the figures; no-one releases data that makes them look worse, after all.  But what are the data… Read more »

  • The Psychology of Pricing

    It’s been another interesting week in IT.  Following on from recent rumours, Nirvanix have finally publicly announced they are closing down, replacing their website with a single holding page directing customers to IBM.  Yesterday, Violin Memory released their shares to the public and floated on the New York Stock Exchange.  Unfortunately there wasn’t a lot… Read more »

  • What EMC Should Have Done With VNX

    My last post discussed the issues with EMC’s strategy around the marketing of their new VNX platform.  Some people will think picking holes in a vendor’s strategy is easy writing, so for those of that persuasion, I’ve taken the time to look at EMC’s portfolio and express an opinion on where EMC should go next…. Read more »

  • Storage IPO Season – Violin Memory and Pure Storage

    It has emerged that both Violin Memory Inc and Pure Storage Inc are on the verge of initial public offerings, based on news articles last week.  Chris Mellor reports that Violin have filed for IPO, looking to raise $172m and in separate news, Pure Storage have raised a massive $150m in preparation for IPO some… Read more »

  • Performance Tier or Capacity Tier? – No It’s the Working Set

    There have been a couple of articles on The Register over the last couple of days talking about EMC CTO John Roese and his use of the terms “Capacity Tier” for VMAX storage and “Performance Tier” for their flash solutions.  Sadly this shows EMCs CTO has an outdated view of the industry, is perpetuating old-school… Read more »