Tracking down noisy neighbors

Good post by Frank Denneman (thank you)

A big part of resource management is sizing of the virtual machines. Right-sizing the virtual machines allows IT teams to optimize the resource utilization of the virtual machines. Right sizing has become a tactical tool for enterprise IT-teams to ensure maximum workload performance and efficient use of the physical infrastructure. Another big part of resource management is keeping track of resource utilization, some of these processes are a part of the daily operation tasks performed by specialized monitoring teams or the administrators themselves. Service Providers usually cannot influence the right sizing element, therefor they focus more on the monitoring part.

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Snapshot 101: Copy-on-write vs Redirect-on-write

Good post by W. Curtis Preston (thank you)

There are two very different ways to create snapshots: copy-on-write and redirect-on-write. If IT is considering using the snapshot functionality of their storage system, it is essential to understand which type of snapshot it creates and the pros and cons of using either method.

Rather than the more common term volume, this column will use the term protected entity to refer to the entity being protected by a given snapshot. While it is true that the protected entity is typically a RAID volume, it is also true that some object storage systems do not use RAID. Their snapshots may be designed to protect other entities, including containers, a NAS share, etc. In this case, the protected entity may reside on a number of disk drives, but it does not reside on a volume in the RAID or LUN sense.

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An overview of the new Virtual SAN 6.2 features

Good Post by Cormac Hogan (thank you)

If you were wondering why my blogging has dropped off in recent months, wonder no more. I’ve been fully immersed in the next release of VSAN. Today VMware has just announced the launch of VSAN 6.2, the next version of VMware’s Virtual SAN product. It is almost 2.5 years since we launched the VSAN beta at VMworld 2013, and almost 2 years to the day since we officially GA’ed our first release of VSAN way back in March 2014. A lot has happened since then, with 3 distinct releases in that 2 year period (6.0, 6.1 and now 6.2). For me the product has matured significantly in that 2 year period, with 3,000 customers and lots of added features. VSAN 6.2 is the most significant release we have had since the initial launch.

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Network, your next big storage problem!

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Good post by Enrico Signoretti (thank you)

A few days ago I had an interesting chat with Andy Warfield at Coho Data and the topic of Network/Storage relationship came up several times. (Quick disclaimer: I’m currently doing some work for Coho)

In a couple of my latest articles (here and here) I talked about why many large IT organizations prefer PODs to other topologies for their datacenters but I totally forgot to talk about networking (I also have to admit that networking is not my field at all). So, this article could be the right follow-up for those posts.

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SMR Drives: Are they too late to the game?

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Good post by Petros Koutoupis (thank you)

The sudden popularity over NAND Flash has spelled doom for traditional magnetic Hard Disk Drives (HDD). For years we have been hearing how HDDs are reaching the end of their life. We have also heard the same about Tape drives, long before that. Although, it would seem that the prediction on HDDs may become a bit more of reality, sooner than expected.

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Peak Fibre Channel

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Good post by Tony Bourke (thank you)

There have been several articles talking about the death of Fibre Channel. This isn’t one of them. However, it is an article about “peak Fibre Channel”. I think, as a technology, Fibre Channel is in the process of (if it hasn’t already) peaking.

There’s a lot of technology in IT that doesn’t simply die. Instead, it grows, peaks, then slowly (or perhaps very slowly) fades. Consider Unix/RISC.

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What is NVMe? And what does it mean for PCIe-SSD?

Good post by George Crump (thank you)

There are two constants in data center storage; the need for greater performance and the need for greater capacity. Flash based storage devices have become the go-to option to address the first challenge. But application owners and users quickly move from an initial euphoria with flash performance to demanding more. Since the flash NAND is essentially the constant in the equation, the surrounding infrastructure has to evolve to extract optimal performance from the technology. But achieving maximum performance often leads to proprietary architectures and designs. NVMe (Non Volatile Memory) is a new industry standard that enables data centers to realize full flash potential without compatibility headaches.

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Hardware First – Designing All-Flash Arrays From a Hardware First Perspective

Good post by George Crump (thank you)

Data centers have to meet the increasing performance demands of scale out databases, big data analytics, and dense virtual environments. These data centers need to meet these demands without requiring more data center floor space or consuming more power. All-flash arrays seem to be the “default” answer to today’s storage performance problems. But all of these systems are not created equal. How the all-flash hardware and software are designed, and how these two components work together, will impact short-term results and long-term potential of the flash investment.

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Docker and Storage – Understanding Docker I/O

Good Post by George Crump (thank you)

Designing a Docker Storage Infrastructure

A recent Storage Switzerland report covered the basics of Docker and Storage; what Docker is and how it impacts storage. Container technology and Docker specifically places unique demands on the storage infrastructure that most legacy storage architectures are ill-prepared to handle. The initial concern is developing a storage infrastructure that will support a container based dev/ops environment. The second concern is that these infrastructures will have to support containers in production as the value of something more granular than a virtual machine (VM) is understood.

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Samsung announces 16TB SSD

Post by Robin Harris (thank you)

Not just the world’s highest capacity SSD, but the world’s highest capacity drive of any type. The PM1633 uses Samsung’s new 48 layer V-NAND, itself a technical tour-de-force, and represents a new thrust in flash storage beyond performance: capacity.

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