Storage Field Day 10 Next Week

Yep, next week is Storage Field Day 10 (also known as #SFD10 on Twitter).

As always, this looks like an action packed event filled with three days of non-stop meetings with companies in Silicon Valley. I’ve been to a number of the Tech Field Day events in the past and there really is no event quite like it. The presentations are extremely technical in nature and we, the delegates are encouraged to ask the tough questions about the product(s) so that the viewers get a real understanding about them.

Here is a quick lineup of the presenters, their products and what I am looking to derive from these meetings:

Kaminario kicks off the event Wednesday morning at 9:30 PST and I am very interested to hear more about their scale up and out architecture. Seems like a unique design centered around a pair of controllers. I missed the presentation at SFD7 but have been watching this company for a while now.

Primary Data is up at 12:30 PST and I’ve had the pleasure of talking to them in the past. I am interested in hearing more about this software solution (DataSphere) that allows customers to use their own storage hardware (such as NetApp, Nexenta or EMC Isilon). One other item that I want to cover with them is their non-disruptive data movement technology, so look for a blog post that focuses on that in the near future.

Cloudian wraps up the day at 3:00pm PST with what I hope will be an in-depth discussion about their HyperStore appliance. Doing a little research on the FL3000 uNode Server Chassis has me intrigued with a design that fits eight servers in 3U’s of space and how that is leveraged with the solution.

Pure Storage kicks off Thursday at 9:30 PST at their headquarters. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with this company many times in the past and the discussions are always extremely technical in nature. I’ve also deployed this product in the past and found the administration of the array to be remarkably simple. The solution that I hope we get to discuss in detail is their “Flashblade” product which I’ve done a fair amount of reading on and aim to dig into some details on the modular blade format of this product.

We then head over to Datera is up next at 1:00 PST with their Elastic Data Fabric that focuses on Openstack, Container, Service Provider and Data Store solutions with a self-optimizing product that is infrastructure aware and utilizes commodity hardware to provision storage on. According to their website, they have centered their product with DevOps in mind. This should be a fun conversation to have.

Next up on Wednesday we visit Tintri at their HQ building to talk about the All-Flash, Hybrid-Flash Arrays with an analytics & management software package that can manage 32 arrays. Software lineup includes ReplicateVM, SyncVM, SecureVM, Automation Toolkit, vCenter Web Client Plug-in, Management Pack for vROps as well as OpenStack support.

Nimble kicks off Friday at 8:00am PST and I am looking forward to catching up with their latest product lineup. I’ve been following them pretty close over the five years or so and am impressed by the rapid growth f this company. They have a interesting product lineup that includes the all flash arrays, adaptive flash arrays, their Infosight Predictive Analytics and hoping to learn more about the SmartStack Integrated Infrastructure product while I’m there.

Hedvig is online at 10:30am PST to discuss their “One Platform for any application”. This is a company that has produced a “unified storage solution” that supports block, file and object based data. Doing some initial research on the company and they have a full set of API’s that are developer focused as well. Really anxious to learn more about the Hedvig distributed storage platform and really understand their storage service layer.

Exablox finalizes the day at 1:30pm PST and to be honest, I haven’t looked at them in quite some time. Doing some initial fact finding on them I found that the “OneBlox” architecture is quite unique with a ring based scale-out design. I am most interested in how this NFS datastore performs as you start growing and removes the limitations.

You can catch all the action live through the video stream located here:

Rick

2016 vExpert Designation

  
I am truly honored to be named a vExpert for the 5th year in a row. The VMware VMTN Blog site released the nominations this week and can be found here.   

I am a firm believer in the power of community and think that when people come together and share resources and ideas, the entire populous benefits tremendously.

Congratulations to all the hard working folks that have been named with this year!

Reduxio Presentation at VMworld 2015

While I was attending VMworld 2015,  I attended the Reduxio presentation at Tech Field Day. I did some preliminary research on this company prior to the presentation and to be honest I did not completely understand their use case, so I was very interested in hearing more technical content from their engineers.

For the presentation, the company had Eyal Traltel (Director of Technical Marketing), Jacob Cherian (VP of Product Strategy and Product Management) as well as Nir Peleg who is the founder and CTO on site.

Funding

Reduxio has four primary backers. Seagate, Intel, JVP and Carmel (which is part of Viola Group).

First Impressions

At first I thought to myself: Ok, here’s another hybrid array but I quickly saw the value-add with the type of protection that they’ve implemented within this midrange storage system.

On the first slide of the presentation they had a statement that read, “A new way to protect data” which immediately sparked my interest. Here is a storage company that put data protection on the top of their list!

Hardware Detail

The Reduxio HX550 consumes 2U of rack space and has the ability to hold 24 drives. They mentioned that generally they have 16 HDD’s and 8 SSD’s in a standard build.

The HDD’s are 7200 RPM drives and the SSD’s are Western Digital eMLC SAS drives. The unit holds 40TB of raw data, but Reduxio said that capacity would be higher when data reduction is factored in. Also, it is a dual controller system with dual 10GB ports on each controller.

Product Operation

TimeOS™ Metadata

This is very different from what others are doing and is what makes this storage array so unique. TimeOS™ tracks every read/write operation (instead of allocating space) which enables the volumes for the following technologies:

Tier-X™

This is a reactive tiering operation that operates at the block level, is automated and is continually running. It is designed to place data on flash first and moves infrequently accessed data to slower magnetic disks through the analysis of 8k blocks.

BackDating™

This is Reduxio’s method of crash consistent protection for applications on all LUN’s created and provisioned in the unit. It allows for recovery within one second of the failure anywhere in the volume. Essentially, giving you a view to the volume “the way it was” before the failure occurred. I did ask some specific questions revolving around always on clustering from Microsoft and even though they haven’t tested it to date, it is on their radar.

Nodup™

This is their deduplication & compression, it is a global setting and is always running in the array on all cache tiers, volumes and clones, as well as current and historical data. It is also real time and in-line!

The Interface

The entire management interface is in HTML5 and during a demonstration of its operation, it was very smooth and fluid.

HTML5 – no javascript or flash and is designed for a touch interface.  During the demo phase of the presentation, the interface is very animated and visually pleasing. For example, when you search a volume and make time selections for restores a pop-out is presented which allows you to focus in on that task.

Final Thoughts

  • All volumes are protected by default through policy based retention.
  • The vCenter plugin has a nice look and feel to its operation.
  • To date, the system does not scale out but they have that in mind for the future since it is designed for scale-out addressing.