|Unified Storage in the SSD
Editor:- October 31, 2014 - Unified Storage...
does that really mean?
And is SAN + NAS really enough to qualify a
rackmount flash system as being Unified Storage in the age of the SSD?
don't think so.
And I got an interesting response when I said this
See SSD news
SolidFire gets another $82 million funding
October 7, 2014 - SolidFire
it has closed an $82 million Series D round of funding, bringing its total
funding to $150 million.
Editor's comments:- The
building blocks of SolidFire's SSD systems are 1U
iSCSI rackmount SSDs
which include 10x 2.5"
SSDs. At that level it's the same as 100 or so other competing systems.
If you want fibre
channel access - you add a special 1U adapter rack to the native IP array.
So it's expensive - but keeps the unit costs of the most common building blocks
down - compared to including native unified storage in each rack. So in the case
of a big installation - it's a reasonable cost optimization tradeoff.
key difference is
software architecture and the fact they use a
architecture type of RAID
- which they call "no-RAID".
In SolidFire's no-RAID (which
is really big RAID) - the data is more widely dispersed across the drive
population than in classical (small architecture) RAID.
is much less disruption to data access and
performance when a drive
because SolidFire's software can manage upto about 100 racks as a raw storage
resource (1,000 SSD drives) - so the impact of a single drive down is small.
Users also have a high degree of flexibility as to how they micro manage
different virtualized segments of storage to meet their different QoS goals.
also:- VCs and SSDs
Maxta invests in Intel
Editor:- August 19, 2014 - In
May 2014 we
learned that Intel
had invested in Maxta.
And this week we learned that Maxta has reciprocated that favor by investing in
More strategically than with mere money - Maxta's
yesterday - is in the form of a reference architecture - cored on Maxta's
MxSP software (SSD ASAP software)
which provides an easy to support set of solutions preconfigured for Intel
servers and Intel SSDs.
Maxta says its MaxDeploy Reference Architecture
offers the framework of a repeatable and standard deployment model - which
provides its customers "ease of ordering and predictability" - and
which mitigates the risk of hardware or software compatibility issues, while
simplifying and shortening deployment time and training.
SSD brand leaders - from IT Brand Pulse
July 17, 2014 - Based on votes by end users in its survey sample groups -
IT Brand Pulse
the "2014 SSD Brand Leaders".
Among others - the IT Brand
Pulse "Innovation Leaders" included these companies and
Editor's comments:- with so many companies now doing market
research which intersects with the SSD market - you've now got more sanity
checks than ever to determine whether your assessment of any particular SSD
company is broadly in line with that of other people.
awareness, financial reports and online search data - intrinsically provide
different numerically weighted views of the same market. And which methodology
you prefer depends on whether your priority is in understanding the past,
present or future - and what it is you're trying to decide.
longitudinal market studies you can refine your understanding of shifting
patterns of market change and real leadership by comparing these different
types of data and correlating the movements in different time periods. So a
shift in search volume in one period may correlate to a change in revenue some
time later. Or a change in revenue or profitability might be seen to be tied to
a change in brand strength later.
The interesting thing about the SSD
market is that because the technology hasn't been standing still - it can be
shocking to compare the same list and see how it changes over a period of 3 to
5 years and to see which old names have disappeared and which new ones have
replaced them. I'm often reminded of this when I trawl back through my own
and news archives. I'm sure it's the same for many of you too.
the things we all hope to get out of these lists - is to avoid making too many
bad bets on companies and technologies which will prove to be a waste of our
SSD market analysts,
trust SSD market data?
what's different about Tegile?
Editor:- June 23, 2014
- Tegile is a
relative newcomer to the pages of StorageSearch.com
(first SSD news citation
in February 2012)
and - frankly - I didn't think too much about the company to begin with -
but I do now.
You can see the gory details of how and why I recently
changed my mind in the new article -
conversation with Tegile.
Nimble says 200 customers have used its bundled stack
May 19, 2014 - Nimble
that over 200 enterprise customers have used its
(pre-validated reference architecture) which is centered around the company's
Skyera begins volume shipments
Editor:- April 30,
2014 - Skyera
volume shipments of its petabyte class
skyHawk rackmount SSD -
which had previously been sampling at select customer sites.
Coho Data now shipping 2U MicroArray hybrids
March 6, 2014 - Coho
general availability of its first product - a 2U SSD ASAP called the
(an SSDserver 4/E box) - which
integrates PCIe SSDs,
hard drives and a
server into a web scale expandable unit (using an internal 52 port 10GbE fabric
switch) to implement what the company refers to as a "MicroArray"
designed with the philosophy of
Tiering Upside Down (pdf)" to deliver a base building block unit of
Editor's comments:- you can judge the lofty
scale of Coho Data's
ambitions by this market
soothsayer quote which they integrated in the launch press release - ""By
2017, Web-scale IT will be an architectural approach found operating in 50% of
Global 2000 enterprises."
SSD empowered cloud,
SSD hybrid arrays,
the enterprise SSD
software event horizon
NetApp has shipped 59PB of SSDs in past 3 years
November 19, 2013 - Among other things - Network Appliance
it has has shipped over 59 petabytes of flash storage in the past 3 years.
comments:- What NetApp actually said was "over 60PB to date".
My calculation goes like this...
The company shipped 1PB in
its first year in the SSD market - which ended in the 3rd quarter of
it's shipped approximately 60PB in 3 years. Probably more than 1/2 of that will
have been in the past year.
How does that compare with others?
It doesn't sound like a lot in the context of today's market.
to a (quirkily pro-HDD)
by Toshiba - the
analyst data which
projects that 8,000 PB of enterprise flash SSDs will ship in 2014.
I think the likely figure (PB of enterprise flash installed in
systems) will be much higher than even that - because Toshiba's data probably
doesn't take adequately into account the ability of some systems vendors to ship
enterprise grade SSD racks using consumer grade flash chips (rather than using
enterprise SSD drives) due to technologies like
- and the increasing appetite for enterprise SSDs. See also:-
petabyte SSD shipment
aligning database block sizes with SSDs
February 5, 2013 - I often hear from readers designing
software for SSDs who
- having researched the subject of
flash etc - have
spent too much time over-worrying about internal SSD hardware details that
they really shouldn't be worrying about. Because by the time they learn about
such things - that type of hardware anxiety is ancient history.
I came across a recent blog by Chas. Dye at Pure Storage
DON'T Fiddle with Your Database Block Size! - which also warns about this
Chas says - "At Pure Storage, we believe that a factor
that should never influence the block size decision is your storage subsystem."
comments:- I'd certainly agree that trying to slavishly make your data
structures look like something you've read about which might be inside an
SSD controller is
probably a waste of time - because unless you know the SSD designer you don't
really know what's going on - and the abstraction you read about in some web
site is only a small part of the picture.
SSD is so sensitive to
the data you hit it with - it's not the SSD you should have bought in the
Skyera says GbE switches inside SSD save costs
September 25, 2012 - Skyera
created some waves last
month when it launched an SSD rack with the lowest
price per terabyte
(at the time) using a range of integrated technologies (adaptive R/W DSP,
controller architecture and integrated
hard to top that kind of announcement. And it may be a long time before Skyera
has anything so significant to say.
Pitched at a more mundane level
today - a
release from the company talks about one of the other factors in its
system which can help to reduce the cost for users. It has multiple embedded
GbE switches inside its SSD racks - so you don't need so many outside.
Nutanix has a new NFS for PCIe SSD accelerated CPUs
June 12, 2012 - Nutanix
announced the general availability of NDFS (Nutanix Distributed File
System), a bold new distributed filesystem that has been optimized to leverage
localized low latency PCIe
SSDs such as those from Fusion-io.
shifting the NFS datapath away from the network directly onto the VMware vSphere
host, NDFS bypasses network communications that have historically been fraught
with multiple high-latency hops between top-of-rack and end-of-row switches.
Nutanix accelerates both read and writes for any workload.
availability are achieved by data mirroring across high-speed 10GbE
switches. Nutanix says it harnesses the same distributed system techniques
that power webscale clouds such as Google, Amazon, and LinkedIn clouds into an
enterprise-friendly package that starts out as a high-density 2U datacenter
Editor's comments:- Nutanix is in the
SSD ASAP market -
equivalency architecture integrated in the OS. The company says their
architecture "collapses compute and storage into a single tier." You
can get the general idea from their
Dell selects Micron's hot-swap 2.5" PCIe SSD
March 6, 2012 - Micron
that it has developed a 2.5"
form factor, hot swappable,
The new solution has been selected as a key storage device in
Dell's PowerEdge 12th
Editor's comments:- this is a natural
progression - from the pioneering work last year by
SANRAD (the first
company to ship front removable PCIe SSDs) and
OCZ (the first company to
In a recent article -
are you designing a new PCIe
SSD? - I discussed some of the new storage architectural concepts which
are being enabled by new PCIe chips from
PLX - in the area of
and PCIe enabled SANs. So there are a lot more changes in the PCIe SSD product
will be an additional form factor for PCIe SSDs - and won't replace the
traditional card / module form factor.
Coraid gets another $50 million funding
November 3, 2011 - Coraid
that it has closed a $50 million investment round - bringing its total funding
to over $85 million.
The company says its
costs under $10/GB.
Conduction cooled rugged NAS SSDs find seats in war-planes
November 1, 2011 - Curtiss-Wright
today announced that it has received a contract from Lockheed Martin
Aeronautics to provide its rugged conduction cooled NAS SSDs -
products - to the U.S. Air Force's
Super Hercules aircraft program.
The initial order is valued at
$800,000, with a potential lifetime contract value estimated at $7.5 million.
virtual server acceleration mistakes
21. 2011 -
5 Mistakes to
Avoid when trying to solve I/O Bottlenecks in Virtualized Servers is a new
article by IO Turbine
published on StorageSearch.com.
to say most of the discussion in here revolves around the best use of SSDs.
Among other things - IO Turbine says "While many enterprise-class storage
providers offer automatic tiering with data migration to and from the SSD
storage, these solutions typically take place well after the need for the I/O
acceleration has passed." ...read the
Violin does that NFS ops - with SSDs - thing
November 17, 2010 - Violin
Memory (which makes
recently unveiled a
SSD cache solution for NAS
systems which use NFS.
Violin says its
vCACHE expands to
15TB of useable cache and delivers over 300,000 NFS operations per second over
8x 10GbE ports. It uses software from
Gear6 which Violin
acquired in June 2010 after the
software developer had
burned its way through $24 million
funding and crashed.
comments:- I spoke to
Basile, CEO of Violin Memory, and
to read interview
the SSD Bookmarks - WhipTail Tech
September 16, 2010 - StorageSearch.com
today published an update to the
SSD Bookmarks series
(which includes recommended reading from SSD industry thought leaders) -
new links for you
to see suggested by James Candelaria,
CTO - WhipTail
Technologies ...read the articles
New NAS systems will scale to 100Gbps
12, 2010 - designing quad port 100Gbps ethernet will be made easier by a new
interface (PHY) from NetLogic
The device supports 10Gbps SFI-to-XFI, 40Gbps
XLPPI-to-XLAUI and 100Gbps CPPI-to-CAUI modes to enable a seamless migration of
data centers from 10 Gigabit to 100 Gigabit throughputs. See also:-
Nexenta streams online tv
Editor:- May 20, 2010 -
that its products (which include
SSD ASAP features)
are being used by the Dutch Public
Broadcasting Agency NPO for storing and delivering online tv in a
configuration which includes 192TB of
hard disk drives and a
1.9TB SSD read cache.
broadcaster's website has approximately 80TB of video available to online
users who want to watch previously broadcasted television programs. During an
average evening, between 10 and 20,000 people stream data, adding up to 25GB in
capacity. The customer (who evaluated multiple vendors ) says that important
selection criteria were:- performance, price, support and power
|re micro tiering and micro
One of the trends in computer architecture in recent years is
that new software architectural concepts which deliver sustainable efficiency or
management efficiencies have found it easier to get their benefits recognized
at a large scale - as part of big web entities or cloud infrastructure.
The lessons learned have been duly noted and reapplied to other use
cases and are now finding their way into individual rack scale products too.
|10 key SSD
ideas which clarified in 2014|
|SSD Pricing -
where does all the money go?|
|SSDs are among the most
expensive computer hardware products you will ever buy. |
the factors which determine SSD costs is often a confusing and irritating
|| ...not made any easier when
market prices for identical capacity SSDs can vary more than 100x to 1!
Why is that? ...read
best way to design a flash SSD? |
and other questions which split SSD
|More than 10 key areas of
fundamental disagreement within the SSD industry are discussed in an article
here on StorageSearch.com called
the SSD Heresies.|
||Why can't SSD's true believers agree upon
a single coherent vision for the future of solid state storage? ...read the article|
|"The winners in SSD
software could be as important for data infrastructure as Microsoft was for
PCs, or Oracle was for databases, or Google was for search."|
|all enterprise data
will touch an SSD |