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
  • EMC Acquire XtremIO

    One of the worst kept secrets in the storage world is finally out.  EMC are acquiring XtremIO for a reported $430 million, as documented in a previous post. The EMC press release talks about XtremIO as “one of the world’s widely regarded Flash storage architecture pioneers”, yet they have no revenue or paying customers to… 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 »

  • Could XtremIO Steal EMC’s Thunder?

    If the weekend IT press is to be believed, EMC are on the verge of acquiring solid-state array vendor XtremIO in a deal worth around $450 million.  This would be a remarkable outcome for a company that is still technically “in stealth mode” and has no obvious revenue or customers. Why would EMC do this?… Read more »

  • Primary Storage De-duplication: Only for SSD Arrays?

    I recently wrote an article for TechTarget that looked at the implementations of data de-duplication in primary storage arrays.  One of the things that stood out for me was the lack of de-duplication support in traditional (and some might say legacy) storage arrays. The cynical amongst us would say that the big 5 storage vendors… Read more »

  • EMC Enters The Market With “Me Too” Flash Products

    Yesterday EMC finally revealed the details on their not-so-secret Lightning and Thunder flash projects.  Fortunately this launch event didn’t include cramming small people into minis or firing Chad Sakac out of a cannon, but was more focused on the market and products EMC are bringing to it.  There was also a large amount of Twitter… Read more »

  • What to Watch in Storage for 2012

    As I write this post, 2012 is already 6.3% completed.  So, for the remaining 93.7% of the year, what can we expect the storage themes to be?  What will companies be focused on and what can we expect from the vendors? Data Reduction The recent flooding in Thailand has had everyone on high alert about… Read more »

  • Emulex – Evolution of the HBA

    At SNW Europe this week I took some time to talk to Emulex about their OneCommand product.  It’s been upgraded to version 2.0, which will be the subject of a post for another day, once I’ve had a chance to install and review it. I also discussed the core of Emulex’s business, namely HBAs (Host… Read more »

  • EMC Releases All Flash VNX

    As the vendor who introduced flash drives into traditional arrays some 2+ years ago, we shouldn’t be surprised that EMC has released an all-flash version of its mid-range array, the VNX.  The new device, codenamed VNX5500-F can support up to 250 200GB drives for a maximum all-flash capacity of 50TB.  EMC don’t say, but assuming… Read more »

  • Solid State Arrays: SolidFire

    One of the attendees at TFD#8 was SolidFire Inc, another startup company focusing on selling entirely solid-state disk arrays.  As you’d expect, they have their own niche and part of the market they are targeting with their all-flash drive product.  So how do they compare to the competition and what’s their “unique selling point” compared… Read more »