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
  • 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 »

  • ScaleIO, EMC’s New Baby

    Keeping up the theme of innovation in storage (yes, it exists, you just have to look), earlier this week I had a chat to one of the UK folks at ScaleIO, the startup now acquired by EMC. ScaleIO are a software company selling a product called Elastic Converged Storage (ECS) that turns ordinary servers into… Read more »

  • The Fall of STEC and Rise of Western Digital

    In a news announcement yesterday, STEC Inc, makers of solid state flash drives (SSDs) announced a “merger” with (i.e. was acquired by) Western Digital, one of the leading hard disk drive manufacturers.  It’s a spectacular fall for a company that at one stage had a share price of over $41/share in September 2009.  However an… Read more »

  • HP 3PAR 7450 All Flash Array

    I mentioned in a previous post that I would delve a little deeper into what HP have done to optimise performance on the new 3PAR 7450.  I was lucky to be able to catch up at the 3Par booth with Priyadarshi Prasad, who works in marketing for HP 3PAR.  We took some time to talk… Read more »

  • ViPR – Frankenstorage Revisited

    Cast your minds back to 2009.  At that time, Chuck Hollis wrote a blog post that quoted the following definition: “Frankenstorage appears to be a new twist on [the Frankenstein] idea — storage arrays, assembled from various parts from multiple vendors, brought to life by the magic of powerpoints and press releases.” The crux of the… Read more »

  • Defining Software Defined Storage

    The term Software Defined Storage has generally accepted within IT as a process for delivering storage without the lock-in of hardware from the vendor.  How has our understanding of the term evolved over recent years? It’s easy to use the examples of server virtualisation and networking as reasons why thinking of storage virtualisation for SDS… Read more »

  • Review: AWS Storage Gateway

    Cloud Storage Gateways provide the ability to write data directly into a cloud service/storage provider, either via a physical or virtual onsite appliance.  There are many vendors in the marketplace today and some are making serious money, (as reported by Chris Mellor today in The Register).  Amazon Web Services, seen as a leader in Infrastructure… Read more »