Since the publication of the DCIG 2014-15 Flash Memory Storage Array Buyer’s Guide, the storage industry has embraced the term all-flash array. For that reason the forthcoming refresh of the buyer’s guide will be called the DCIG 2015-16 All-Flash Array Buyer’s Guide. More than terminology has changed over the last eighteen (18) months. The fresh data DCIG compiled shows that all-flash array vendors have substantially reduced the barriers to all-flash array adoption.
Almost any hybrid or all-flash storage array will accelerate performance for the applications it hosts. Yet many organizations need a storage array that scales beyond just accelerating the performance of a few hosts. They want a solution that both solves their immediate performance challenges and serves as a launch pad to using flash more broadly in their environment.
A little over a decade ago when I told people that I was managing three (3) storage arrays with eleven (11) TBs of storage under management, people looked at me with a mixture of shock and awe. Fast forward to 2015 and last week’s NAB conference in Las Vegas, NV, and it was hard to find many storage vendors who even wanted to have a conversation with a customer unless it had at least a petabyte of data under management.
At a recent analyst briefing, Micron Storage leaders identified at least three critical transitions that must take place in order to unleash the full potential of flash memory in the data center…
At a recent analyst briefing, Micron Storage leaders identified at least three critical transitions that must take place in order to unleash the full potential of flash memory in the data center and explained their strategy for accelerating those transitions.
DCIG is in the process of researching the Flash Memory Storage Array marketplace with the intention of publishing the DCIG 2015-16 Flash Memory Storage Array Buyer’s Guide in July 2015. Since the publication of the 2014 edition, many storage providers have come out with new models, new providers have arrived on the scene and others have exited or been acquired–warranting a fresh snapshot of this dynamic marketplace. The purpose of this courtesy notice is five-fold To inform prospective storage purchasers and storage providers that DCIG intends to publish the DCIG 2015-16 Flash Memory Storage Array Buyers Guide in July 2015. To describe the appeal of flash memory storage arrays while clarifying DCIG’s definition of the category. To disclose DCIG’s inclusion criteria and enumerate the products identified in our preliminary research. To give storage providers and end users an opportunity to inform DCIG of additional products that may qualify for inclusion or that should be excluded. To give notice of key dates…
DCIG is in the process of researching the Flash Memory Storage Array marketplace with the intention of publishing the DCIG 2015-16 Flash Memory Storage Array Buyer’s Guide in May 2015. Since the publication of the 2014 edition, many storage providers have come out with new models, new providers have arrived on the scene and others have exited or been acquired–warranting a fresh snapshot of this dynamic marketplace.
At the beginning of 2014, I started the year with the theme: “it’s an exciting time to be part of the DCIG team“. This was due to the explosive growth we saw in website visits and popularity of our Buyer’s Guides. That hasn’t changed. DCIG Buyer’s Guides continue to grow in popularity, but what’s even more exciting is the diversity of our new products and services. This year’s theme is diversity: a range of different things. DCIG is expanding…again…in different directions. In the past year, we have added a number of offerings to our repertoire of products and services. In addition to producing our popular Buyer’s Guides and well known blogs, we now offer Competitive Research Services, Executive Interviews, Executive White papers, Lead Generation, Special Reports and Webinars. Even more unique, DCIG now offers an RFP/RFI Analysis Software Suite. This suite gives anyone (vendor, end-user or technology reseller) the ability to license the same software that DCIG uses internally to…
At the beginning of 2014, I started the year with the theme: “it’s an exciting time to be part of the DCIG team”. This was due to the explosive growth we saw in website visits and popularity of our Buyer’s Guides. That hasn’t changed. DCIG Buyer’s Guides continue to grow in popularity, but what’s even more exciting is the diversity of our new products and services. This year’s theme is diversity: a range of different things. DCIG is expanding…again…in different directions.
Flash arrays from all providers have matured significantly in the last few years. As such, most if not all flash arrays meet or exceed the capacity and performance requirements of the application or applications attached to it. Further, flash arrays have matured to the point where questions about their stability in these small environments is less of an issue than even a few years ago. This changes the objective of what enterprises should look to accomplish when they bring in a flash array to evaluate. Rather than simply trying to confirm if it performs well and/or its software is stable, enterprises need to perform a more thorough evaluation of any flash storage array under consideration to ensure the evaluation produces results pertinent to the enterprise’s longer term objectives. To achieve this outcome, enterprises should only evaluate those flash arrays positioned to meet their short as well as their long term objectives. While enterprises still need to validate and test a…
While enterprises still need to validate and test a flash storage array’s performance and stability, the time has arrived for them to expand their evaluation to ensure that the flash storage array offers the other capabilities that they will also need in their environment. Eight other flash storage array features that should now be part of their modern day flash memory storage array check list include:
Flash is by all estimates the future of enterprise production storage with most enterprises anticipating a day in the not too distant future where they will use flash storage arrays (all-flash or hybrid) much more broadly within their data center. Yet despite flash’s many benefits (higher levels of performance, smaller data center footprint and reduced energy consumption among others,) many enterprises still only use flash in a limited capacity if they use it at all. Today I take a look at some of the factors that still contribute to an enterprise reticence to adopt flash more broadly.
Dedicating a single flash-based storage array to improving the performance of a single application may be appropriate for siloed or small SAN environments. However this is NOT an architecture that enterprises want to leverage when hosting multiple applications in larger SAN environments, especially if the flash-based arrays has only a few or unproven data management services behind it. The new Oracle FS1 Series Flash Storage System addresses these concerns by providing enterprises both the levels of performance and the mature and robust data management services that they need to move flash-based arrays from the fringes of their SAN environments into their core.
A couple of weeks ago I attended the Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, CA, where I had the opportunity to talk to a number of providers, fellow analysts and developers in attendance about the topic of flash memory. The focus of many of these conversations was less about what flash means right now as its performance ramifications are already pretty well understood by the enterprise. Rather many are already looking ahead to take further advantage of flash’s particular idiosyncrasies and, in so doing, give us some good insight into what will be hot in flash in the years to come.
There is literally a divergence occurring right now in data storage solutions. On one hand, a number of storage providers seek to deliver highly differentiated storage solutions that work with a broad set of applications and operating systems. On the other, a few providers focus on delivering a storage solution that tightly integrates with one or more applications to deliver unparalleled levels of application performance and ease of management. The latest Oracle ZFS Storage Appliance ZS3 Series with its new OS8.2 provide the best of what both of these categories of storage systems currently have to offer to deliver a storage platform that truly stands apart.
The use of data reduction technologies such as compression and deduplication to reduce storage costs are nothing new. Tape drives have used compression for decades to increase backup data densities on tape while many modern deduplicating backup appliances use compression and deduplication to also reduce backup data stores. Even a select number of existing HDD-based storage arrays use data compression and deduplication to minimize data stores for large amounts of file data stored in archives or on networked attached file servers.
As I attended sessions at Microsoft TechEd 2014 last week and talked with people in the exhibit hall a number of themes emerged including “mobile first, cloud first”, hybrid cloud, migration to the cloud, disaster recovery as a service, and flash memory storage as a game-changer in the data center. But as I reflect on the entire experience, a statement made John Loveall, Principal Program Manager for Microsoft Windows Server during one of his presentations sums up to overall message of the conference, “Today it is really all about the integrated solution.”
Toward the end of April Wikibon’s David Floyer posted an article on the topic of server SANs entitled “The Rise of Server SANs” which generated a fair amount of attention and was even the focus of a number of conversations that I had at this past week’s Symantec Vision 2014 conference in Las Vegas. However I have to admit, when I first glanced at some of the forecasts and charts that were included in that piece, I thought Wikibon was smoking pot and brushed it off. But after having had some lengthy conversations with attendees at Symantec Vision, I can certainly see why Wikibon made some of the claims that it did.
VMware® VMmark® has quickly become a performance benchmark to which many organizations turn to quantify how many virtual machines (VMs) they can realistically expect to host and then perform well on a cluster of physical servers. Yet a published VMmark score for a specified hardware configuration may overstate or, conversely, fail to fully reflect the particular solution’s VM consolidation and performance capabilities. The HP ProLiant BL660c published VMmark performance benchmarks using a backend HP 3PAR StoreServ 7450 all-flash array provide the relevant, real-world results that organizations need to achieve maximum VM density levels, maintain or even improve VM performance as they scale and control costs as they grow.
DCIG is pleased to announce the March 30 release of the DCIG 2014-15 Flash Memory Storage Array Buyer’s Guide that weights, scores and ranks more than 130 features of thirty-nine (39) different storage arrays from twenty (20) different storage providers.