Welcome!

Microsoft Cloud Authors: Pat Romanski, Jnan Dash, Andreas Grabner, Lori MacVittie, Jim Kaskade

Blog Feed Post

EMC announces XtremIO General Availability (Part I)

EMC announces XtremIO General Availability (Part I)

By Greg Schulz

Storage I/O trends

EMC announces XtremIO flash SSD General Availability

EMC announced today the general availability (GA) if the all flash Solid State Device (SSD) XtremIO that they acquired a little over a year ago. Earlier this year EMC announced directed availability (DA) of the EMC version of XtremIO as part of other SSD hardware and software updates (here and here). The XtremIO GA announcement also follows that of the VNX2 or MCx released in September of this year that also has flash SSD enhancements along with doing more with available resources.

EMC XtremIO flash SSD boosting storage I/O performance

As an industry trend, the question is not if SSD is in your future, rather where, when, how much, what to use along with coexistence to complement Hard Disk Drive (HDD) based solutions in some environments. This also means that SSD is like real estate where location matters, not to mention having different types of technologies, packaging, solutions to meet various needs (and price points). This all ties back to the best server and storage I/O or IOP is the one that you do know have to do, the second best is the one with the least impact and best application benefit.

From industry adoption to customer deployment

EMC has evolved the XtremIO platform from a pre-acquisition solution to an first EMC version that was offered to an early set of customers e.g. DA.

I suspect that the DA was as much a focus on getting early customer feedback, addressing immediate needs or opportunities as wells as getting the EMC sales and marketing teams messaging, marching orders aligned and deployed. The latter would be rather important to decrease or avoid the temptation to cannibalize existing product sales with the shiny new technology (SNT). Likewise, it would be important for EMC to not create isolated pockets or fenced off products as some other vendors often do.

EMC XtremIO X-Brick
25 SSD drive X-Brick

What is being announced?

  • General availability vs. directed or limited availability
  • Version 2.2 of the XIOS platform software
  • Integrating with EMC support and service tools

Let us get back go this announcement and XtremIO of which EMC has indicated that they have several customers who have now done either $1M or $5M USD deals. EMC has claimed over 1.5 PBytes have been booked and deployed, or with data footprint reduction (DFR) including dedupe over 10PB effective capacity. Note that for those who are focused on dedupe or DFR reduction ratios 10:1.5 may not be as impressive as seen with some backup solutions, however keep in mind that this is for primary high performance storage vs. secondary or tertiary storage devices.

As part of this announcement, EMC has also release V2.2 of the XtremIO platform software (XIOS). Hence a normal new product should start with a version 1.0 at launch, however as explained this is both a new version of the technology as well as the initial GA by EMC.

Also as part of this announcement, EMC is making available XtremIO 10TB X-Bricks with 25 eMLC SSD drives each, along with dual controllers (storage processors). EMC has indicated that it will make available a 20TB X-Brick using larger capacity SSD drives in January 2014. Note that the same type of SSD drives must be used in the systems. Currently there can be up to four X-Bricks per XtremIO cluster or instance that are interconnected using a dedicated InfiniBand Fabric. Application servers access the XtremIO X-Bricks using standard Fibre Channel or Ethernet and IP based iSCSI. In addition to the hardware platform items, the XtremIO platform software (XIOS) includes built-in on the fly data footprint reduction (DFR) using global dedupe during data ingestion and placement. Other features include thin provisioning, VMware VAII, data protection and self-balancing data placement.

Storage I/O trends

Who or what applications are XtremIO being positioned for?

Some of XtremIO industry sectors include:

  • Financial and insurance services
  • Medical, healthcare and life sciences
  • Manufacturing, retail and warehouse management
  • Government and defense
  • Media and entertainment
Application and workload focus:

  • VDI including replacing linked clones with ability to do full clone without overhead
  • Server virtualization where aggregation causes aggravation with many mixed IOPs
  • Database for reducing latency, boosting IOPs as well as improving software license costs.

Databases such as IBM DB2, Oracle RAC, Microsoft SQLserver and MySQL among others have traditionally for decades been a prime opportunity for SSD (DRAM and flash). This also includes newer NoSQL or key value stores and meta data repositories for object such as Mongo, Hbase, Cassandra, Riak among others. Typical focus includes placing entire instances, or specific files and objects such as indices, journals and redo logs, import/export temp or scratch space, message queries and high activity tables among others.

What about overlap with other EMC products?

If you simply looked at the above list of sectors (among others) or applications, you could easily come to a conclusion that there is or would be overlap. Granted in some environments there will be which means XtremIO (or other vendors solutions) may be the primary storage solution. On the other hand since everything is not the same in most data centers or information factories, there will be a mix of storage systems handling various tasks. This is where EMC will need to be careful learning what they did during DA on where to place XtremIO and how to positing to complement when and where needed other solutions, or as applicable being a replacement.

XtremIO Announcement Summary

  • All flash SSD storage solution with iSCSI and Fibre Channel server attachment
  • Scale out and scale up performance while keeping latency low and deterministic
  • Enhanced flash duty cycle (wear leveling) to increase program / erase (P/E) cycles durability
  • Can complement other storage systems, arrays or appliances or function as a standalone
  • Coexists and complements host side caching hardware and software
  • Inline always on data footprint reduction (DFR) including dedupe (global dedupe without performance compromise), space saving snapshots and copies along with thin provisioning

Storage I/O trends

Some General Comment and Perspectives

Overall, XtremIO gives EMC and their customers, partners and prospects a new technology to use and add to their toolbox for addressing various challenges. SSD is in your future, when, where, with what and how are questions not to mention how much. After all, a bit of flash SSD in the right location used effectively can have a large impact. On the other hand, a lot of flash SSD in the wrong place or not used effectively will cost you lots of cash. Key for EMC and their partners will be to articulate clearly, where XtremIO fits vs. other solutions without adding complexity.

Checkout part II of this series to learn more about XtremIO including what it is, how it works, competition and added perspectives.

Ok, nuff said (for now).

Cheers
Gs

Greg Schulz - Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press) and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier)

All Comments, (C) and (TM) belong to their owners/posters, Other content (C) Copyright 2006-2013 StorageIO All Rights Reserved

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Greg Schulz

Greg Schulz is founder of the Server and StorageIO (StorageIO) Group, an IT industry analyst and consultancy firm. Greg has worked with various server operating systems along with storage and networking software tools, hardware and services. Greg has worked as a programmer, systems administrator, disaster recovery consultant, and storage and capacity planner for various IT organizations. He has worked for various vendors before joining an industry analyst firm and later forming StorageIO.

In addition to his analyst and consulting research duties, Schulz has published over a thousand articles, tips, reports and white papers and is a sought after popular speaker at events around the world. Greg is also author of the books Resilient Storage Network (Elsevier) and The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC). His blog is at www.storageioblog.com and he can also be found on twitter @storageio.

@ThingsExpo Stories
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, discussed the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to focus o...
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, discussed 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.
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo 2016 in New York. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with 20th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry p...
"LinearHub provides smart video conferencing, which is the Roundee service, and we archive all the video conferences and we also provide the transcript," stated Sunghyuk Kim, CEO of LinearHub, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Things are changing so quickly in IoT that it would take a wizard to predict which ecosystem will gain the most traction. In order for IoT to reach its potential, smart devices must be able to work together. Today, there are a slew of interoperability standards being promoted by big names to make this happen: HomeKit, Brillo and Alljoyn. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Adam Justice, vice president and general manager of Grid Connect, will review what happens when smart devices don’t work togethe...
"There's a growing demand from users for things to be faster. When you think about all the transactions or interactions users will have with your product and everything that is between those transactions and interactions - what drives us at Catchpoint Systems is the idea to measure that and to analyze it," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York Ci...
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
Discover top technologies and tools all under one roof at April 24–28, 2017, at the Westin San Diego in San Diego, CA. Explore the Mobile Dev + Test and IoT Dev + Test Expo and enjoy all of these unique opportunities: The latest solutions, technologies, and tools in mobile or IoT software development and testing. Meet one-on-one with representatives from some of today's most innovative organizations
20th Cloud Expo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy.
WebRTC is the future of browser-to-browser communications, and continues to make inroads into the traditional, difficult, plug-in web communications world. The 6th WebRTC Summit continues our tradition of delivering the latest and greatest presentations within the world of WebRTC. Topics include voice calling, video chat, P2P file sharing, and use cases that have already leveraged the power and convenience of WebRTC.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in Embedded and IoT solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Supermicro (NASDAQ: SMCI), the leading innovator in high-performance, high-efficiency server technology, is a premier provider of advanced server Building Block Solutions® for Data Center, Cloud Computing, Enterprise IT, Hadoop/Big Data, HPC and E...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @ThingsExpo New York Call for Papers is now open.
WebRTC sits at the intersection between VoIP and the Web. As such, it poses some interesting challenges for those developing services on top of it, but also for those who need to test and monitor these services. In his session at WebRTC Summit, Tsahi Levent-Levi, co-founder of testRTC, reviewed the various challenges posed by WebRTC when it comes to testing and monitoring and on ways to overcome them.
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
WebRTC services have already permeated corporate communications in the form of videoconferencing solutions. However, WebRTC has the potential of going beyond and catalyzing a new class of services providing more than calls with capabilities such as mass-scale real-time media broadcasting, enriched and augmented video, person-to-machine and machine-to-machine communications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Luis Lopez, CEO of Kurento, introduced the technologies required for implementing these idea...
Buzzword alert: Microservices and IoT at a DevOps conference? What could possibly go wrong? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by Jason Bloomberg, the leading expert on architecting agility for the enterprise and president of Intellyx, panelists peeled away the buzz and discuss the important architectural principles behind implementing IoT solutions for the enterprise. As remote IoT devices and sensors become increasingly intelligent, they become part of our distributed cloud enviro...
"A lot of times people will come to us and have a very diverse set of requirements or very customized need and we'll help them to implement it in a fashion that you can't just buy off of the shelf," explained Nick Rose, CTO of Enzu, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
The WebRTC Summit New York, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, announces that its Call for Papers is now open. Topics include all aspects of improving IT delivery by eliminating waste through automated business models leveraging cloud technologies. WebRTC Summit is co-located with 20th International Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo. WebRTC is the future of browser-to-browser communications, and continues to make inroads into the traditional, difficult, plug-in web co...
In his keynote at @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Director of IoT Engineering at Citrix and co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, focused on building an IoT platform and company. He provided a behind-the-scenes look at Octoblu’s platform, business, and pivots along the way (including the Citrix acquisition of Octoblu).
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.