Welcome!

Recurring Revenue Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Sujoy Sen, JP Morgenthal, Pat Romanski

Blog Feed Post

4 Observations About the EMC VFCache Announcement and the Sandisk Acquisition of Flashsoft

The SSD caching market is on fire.  This week, EMC announced VFCache, IBM announced XIV Gen3 SSD Caching, Flashsoft was acquired by Sandisk, and many storage vendors acknowledged that flash features in their long-term roadmap.  Activity has certainly picked up. It is interesting to explore what is causing the rapid development of the SSD caching market.

Here are my 4 key takeaways:

1. Flash has arrived

    Reliability: Flash technology (particularly in the SSD form factor) has matured enough to be used in the 24/7 enterprise environments. Through a combination of more reliable SSD and better management of data on SSD, suppliers have managed to create solutions that, while expensive, provide the bullet-proof reliability required in enterprise environments.

    Real results: Businesses have experienced the benefits of higher SSD IOPS in production environments. Higher SSD performance has translated to up to 10+ times improvement in performance for applications like databases (Oracle, SQL Server, MySQL, etc.), Financial analysis, research, simulation, modeling, enterprise search, E-commerce and social networking.

    Enterprise Budgets:  2012 is the first year where IT teams have dedicated budgets for deploying SSD.

    2. The storage industry has accepted that storage architectures will change

    EMC’s launch of VFCache and similar announcements from other storage vendors show that the industry has accepted a paradigm shift in data storage.  Gone are the days when all data was stored and served from fibre-channel SAN arrays. Storage arrays will continue to be used to consolidate data for backup and sharing, but performance will be driven by a layer of flash in the server that holds a copy of primary data.  Chris Mellor’s article in The Register “Inside the Mind of EMC, Is Storage Just a Launchpad” and David FLoyer's article in WikibonDesigning Systems and Infrastructure in the Big Data IO Centric Era” provide more details on the shift in storage architectures.

    3.  SSD caching offers an easier path to SSD deployment

      SSDs offer many advantages over HDDs, including much higher I/O performance, lower power consumption, and non-volatile memory. However, SSDs are expensive and deploying SSD often disrupts existing data protection and data management infrastructures. Deploying SSD as a cache overcomes both limitations.

       Lower Cost: By caching only important data on SSD and keeping primary data on lower-cost HDD, application performance can be increased at a lower cost

       Non-Disruptive Deployment: When SSD is deployed as a cache, existing primary storage remains unchanged. There is no need to pause or change existing backup and data management infrastructure.

       Best of both worlds:Deploying SSD as a cache provides the low latency and high performance of server-based SSD, while preserving the ability to uniformly protect and share primary data stored in the storage array.

      4. SSD cache solutions will soon pack more intelligence

        SSD is not just a faster disk: data is structured, accessed, and protected in a fundamentally different way in SSDs. Unfortunately, applications today are optimized for working with HDD and do not take into account the asymmetric read/write operations and SSD wear caused by write/erase operations. One can expect that over time applications will be re-written to account for the specific properties of SSD; however, the process of rewriting applications will be slow and is likely to drag over 10-15 years. SSD Caching software is a natural application translation layer that can optimize data for SSD.

        Data optimization for SSD: The table below illustrates the asymmetric nature of SSD. Read speed is 10x faster than write speed and 80x faster than erase speed. Furthermore, erase operations wear down the SSD and shorten its life. An SSD performs best if the caching software structures data in a way that maximizes read operations and minimizes write and erase operations. SSD performance is also impacted by the structure and size of data blocks stored on SSD. Intelligent SSD caching software would structure data blocks in a way that optimizes SSD performance and reliability while minimizing cost and wear.

         

        S per GB

        Latency (Microsec)

        Mean Time to Failure

        Flash Memory

        $1-$6

        Read:         25

        Write:       250

        Erase:    2,000

        3-50K erase cycles

        Hard Disk

        $0.10

                    3,000

         

        5 years

         

        Performance: Existing caching algorithms were developed for HDD and do not account for the asymmetric properties of SSD (the blog “Why Standard Cache Algorithms Won’t Work For SSDs” by Prof. Qing Yang, CTO of VeloBit, discusses this in further detail). As a result, when used with SSD, –existing caching algorithms do not perform well and shorten the life of SSD. New caching algorithms, designed with SSD in mind, can increase SSD performance by 3-5x relative to existing caching solutions and can enable use of less expensive SSD.

        Data pattern intelligence: Tiering and caching solutions today prioritize data based on its recency or frequency of use and, as a result, are not very effective at predicting future data use. The intelligent SSD caching software of the future will self-tune based on the data pattern to maximize performance on every application.

        What do you think about the recent wave of SSD announcements and acquisitions? Where do you think the industry is going?

        Read the original blog entry...

        More Stories By Peter Velikin

        Peter Velikin has 12 years of experience creating new markets and commercializing products in multiple high tech industries. Prior to VeloBit, he was VP Marketing at Zmags, a SaaS-based digital content platform for e-commerce and mobile devices, where he managed all aspects of marketing, product management, and business development. Prior to that, Peter was Director of Product and Market Strategy at PTC, responsible for PTC’s publishing, content management, and services solutions. Prior to PTC, Peter was at EMC Corporation, where he held roles in product management, business development, and engineering program management.

        Peter has an MS in Electrical Engineering from Boston University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

        @ThingsExpo Stories
        SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
        There is little doubt that Big Data solutions will have an increasing role in the Enterprise IT mainstream over time. Big Data at Cloud Expo - to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - has announced its Call for Papers is open. Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is...
        Digital innovation is the next big wave of business transformation based on digital technologies of which IoT and Big Data are key components, For example: Business boundary innovation is a challenge to excavate third-party business value using IoT and BigData, like Nest Business structure innovation may propose re-building business structure from scratch, as Uber does in the taxicab industry The social model innovation is also a big challenge to the new social architecture with the design fr...
        DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long dev...
        Data is an unusual currency; it is not restricted by the same transactional limitations as money or people. In fact, the more that you leverage your data across multiple business use cases, the more valuable it becomes to the organization. And the same can be said about the organization’s analytics. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bill Schmarzo, CTO for the Big Data Practice at EMC, will introduce a methodology for capturing, enriching and sharing data (and analytics) across the organizati...
        IoT is fundamentally transforming the auto industry, turning the vehicle into a hub for connected services, including safety, infotainment and usage-based insurance. Auto manufacturers – and businesses across all verticals – have built an entire ecosystem around the Connected Car, creating new customer touch points and revenue streams. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Macario Namie, Head of IoT Strategy at Cisco Jasper, will share real-world examples of how IoT transforms the car from a static p...
        The many IoT deployments around the world are busy integrating smart devices and sensors into their enterprise IT infrastructures. Yet all of this technology – and there are an amazing number of choices – is of no use without the software to gather, communicate, and analyze the new data flows. Without software, there is no IT. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists will look at the protocols that communicate data and the emerging data analy...
        The vision of a connected smart home is becoming reality with the application of integrated wireless technologies in devices and appliances. The use of standardized and TCP/IP networked wireless technologies in line-powered and battery operated sensors and controls has led to the adoption of radios in the 2.4GHz band, including Wi-Fi, BT/BLE and 802.15.4 applied ZigBee and Thread. This is driving the need for robust wireless coexistence for multiple radios to ensure throughput performance and th...
        SYS-CON Events announced today that China Unicom will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. China United Network Communications Group Co. Ltd ("China Unicom") was officially established in 2009 on the basis of the merger of former China Netcom and former China Unicom. China Unicom mainly operates a full range of telecommunications services including mobile broadband (GSM, WCDMA, LTE F...
        The Transparent Cloud-computing Consortium (abbreviation: T-Cloud Consortium) will conduct research activities into changes in the computing model as a result of collaboration between "device" and "cloud" and the creation of new value and markets through organic data processing High speed and high quality networks, and dramatic improvements in computer processing capabilities, have greatly changed the nature of applications and made the storing and processing of data on the network commonplace.
        Video experiences should be unique and exciting! But that doesn’t mean you need to patch all the pieces yourself. Users demand rich and engaging experiences and new ways to connect with you. But creating robust video applications at scale can be complicated, time-consuming and expensive. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Zohar Babin, Vice President of Platform, Ecosystem and Community at Kaltura, will discuss how VPaaS enables you to move fast, creating scalable video experiences that reach your...
        Big Data has been changing the world. IoT fuels the further transformation recently. How are Big Data and IoT related? In his session at @BigDataExpo, Tony Shan, a renowned visionary and thought leader, will explore the interplay of Big Data and IoT. He will anatomize Big Data and IoT separately in terms of what, which, why, where, when, who, how and how much. He will then analyze the relationship between IoT and Big Data, specifically the drilldown of how the 4Vs of Big Data (Volume, Variety,...
        SYS-CON Events announced today that Pulzze Systems will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Pulzze Systems, Inc. provides infrastructure products for the Internet of Things to enable any connected device and system to carry out matched operations without programming. For more information, visit http://www.pulzzesystems.com.
        If you’re responsible for an application that depends on the data or functionality of various IoT endpoints – either sensors or devices – your brand reputation depends on the security, reliability, and compliance of its many integrated parts. If your application fails to deliver the expected business results, your customers and partners won't care if that failure stems from the code you developed or from a component that you integrated. What can you do to ensure that the endpoints work as expect...
        Almost two-thirds of companies either have or soon will have IoT as the backbone of their business in 2016. However, IoT is far more complex than most firms expected. How can you not get trapped in the pitfalls? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, a renowned visionary and thought leader, will introduce a holistic method of IoTification, which is the process of IoTifying the existing technology and business models to adopt and leverage IoT. He will drill down to the components in this fra...
        The Internet of Things can drive efficiency for airlines and airports. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Sudip Majumder, senior director of development at Oracle, will discuss the technical details of the connected airline baggage and related social media solutions. These IoT applications will enhance travelers' journey experience and drive efficiency for the airlines and the airports. The session will include a working demo and a technical d...
        WebRTC adoption has generated a wave of creative uses of communications and collaboration through websites, sales apps, customer care and business applications. As WebRTC has become more mainstream it has evolved to use cases beyond the original peer-to-peer case, which has led to a repeating requirement for interoperability with existing infrastructures. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Graham Holt, Executive Vice President of Daitan Group, will cover implementation examples that have enabled ea...
        SYS-CON Events announced today the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp, being held November 1-2, 2016, in conjunction with 19th Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp is not just based on presentations but with hands-on demos and detailed walkthroughs. We will introduce you to a variety of real world use cases prototyped using Arduino, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone, Spark, and Intel Edison. Y...
        Technology vendors and analysts are eager to paint a rosy picture of how wonderful IoT is and why your deployment will be great with the use of their products and services. While it is easy to showcase successful IoT solutions, identifying IoT systems that missed the mark or failed can often provide more in the way of key lessons learned. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Peter Vanderminden, Principal Industry Analyst for IoT & Digital Supply Chain to Flatiron Strategies, will focus on how IoT de...
        Fact is, enterprises have significant legacy voice infrastructure that’s costly to replace with pure IP solutions. How can we bring this analog infrastructure into our shiny new cloud applications? There are proven methods to bind both legacy voice applications and traditional PSTN audio into cloud-based applications and services at a carrier scale. Some of the most successful implementations leverage WebRTC, WebSockets, SIP and other open source technologies. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Da...