vSphere Virtual Volumes Interoperability: VAAI APIs vs VVOLs

Good post by Rawlinson Rivera (thank you)

In 2011 VMware introduced block based VAAI APIs as part of vSphere 4.1 release. This APIs helped improving performance of VMFS by providing offload of some of the heavy operations to the storage array. In subsequent release, VMware added VAAI APIs for NAS, thin provisioning, and T10 command support for Block VAAI APIs.

Now with Virtual Volumes (VVOLs) VMware is introducing a new virtual machine management and integration framework that exposes virtual disks as the primary unit of data management for storage arrays. This new framework enables array-based operations at the virtual disk level that can be precisely aligned to application boundaries with the capability of providing a policy-based management approach per virtual machine.

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The difference between Retroactive Deduplication and Software Defined Storage

Good post by George Crump (thank you)

Short of buying a new storage system with storage efficiency (deduplication and compression) built in, it is difficult to add the technology to an existing storage array. Today there are two ways to accomplish this. First, you can wait for your storage vendor to add the capability and hope it is backward compatible. Second, you can add a software defined storage layer to replace your current storage software, but leverage your existing storage hardware. Now there is a third option, retroactive deduplication, which adds storage efficiency to the existing storage hardware but does not replace its software.

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Users bullish on virtualizing storage and software-defined storage

Post by Rich Castagna (thank you)

Survey finds 89% of users virtualizing storage are “Very satisfied” or “Satisfied.” Software-defined storage also heavily deployed.

A somewhat surprising 43% of survey respondents report they have virtualized at least some of their storage to pool those resources. And the results are a stunning success: 89% gave a “Very satisfied” or “Satisfied” thumbs up, 36% said they’re wasting a lot less capacity and 47% have realized some new efficienciesStorage virtualization methods vary, with decisions typically based on what kind of gear is already installed. Our respondents indicated a nearly even split among array-based storage virtualization, appliance-based and software installed on a server.

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Adding Deduplication and Compression without impacting performance

Post by George Crump (thank you)

IT professionals expect a lot from their storage systems; they want volume management, thin provisioning, snapshot, clones, automated tiering, replication etc. Increasingly today, they want deduplication and compression as well, so they can squeeze every ounce of capacity out of their storage investment. While all of these capabilities can make the life of the storage administrator easier and reduce the cost of storage system ownership, they can also negatively impact performance.

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Flash Arrays need high performance compression

What's the Difference Between Compression, Deduplication, and Single-Instance Storage?

Post by George Crump (thank you)

Startups like Nimble, Pure Storage, SolidFire and Tegile are starting to take business away from the traditional tier 1 storage vendors. Their key differentiator, and often the winning point, has been their ability to efficiently use flash storage. Making flash compelling to IT professionals requires a high performance architecture with the ability to use flash efficiently: at the right price point (effective cost) and effective capacity. Many tier 1 vendors have the high performance, but lack the effective cost and effective capacity. This is a direct result of the lack of compression, deduplication and thin provisioning capabilities. This is enabling independent all flash array vendors, as mentioned above, to encroach their accounts with better cost and capacity capabilities.

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The 3PAR ASIC

Good post by Phill Gilbert (thank you)

If you’ve ever spoken to HP (or the older 3PAR guys) about 3PAR technology, then they’d have undoubtedly mentioned the 3PAR ASIC and there’s a very good reason why; the 3PAR ASIC is a true differentiator in a landscape where most vendors are striving for Software Defined Storage – true abstraction of the storage hardware from the software. Examples of this are HP’s own StoreVirtual VSA offering and NetApp, who reckon they’re close to offering a full software solution where hardware is entirely commoditised.

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Thin Provisioning Buyers Guide

Good post by Anthony Vandewerdt (thank you)

Storage space consumption is always a major bone of contention in all data centers. It seems 100 TB of new storage can fill up in a blink of an eye and then you have to buy some more. But what to do? Lets get below the covers to see what is happening.

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The future of storage is a horror show – just ignore the biz strategists

Good post by Chris Mellor (thank you) over at El Reg

Blocks and Files Storage was actually simple, before disk-to-disk backup came along and started spoiling the party. Now we need a storage magician to take the horror out of the storage horror show.

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All-Flash Storage Efficiency Is About More Than Deduplication

Good post by George Crump (thank you)

All-Flash Storage Arrays have quickly become the go to option to solve storage performance challenges. Thanks to data efficiency technologies that reduce the effective cost per gigabyte (GB), the appeal of All-Flash Arrays now extends beyond the performance fringe and into the mainstream data center. Deduplication has captured much of the attention of data efficiency techniques, but IT planners need to be careful not to assume that all deduplication is the same nor is it the only data efficiency technology available to them.

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IBM Storwize V5000 joins Big Blue’s unified family

v5k_01

Post by Sonia Lelii (thank you)

IBM this week added a third member of the Storwize unified storage platform, along with enhancements to XIV and its SmartCloud Storage Access software.

The new IBM Storwize V5000 is slotted between the Storwize V7000 that launched in 2010 and the entry-level V3700 that came along two years later. All three models are built on IBM’s SAN Volume Controller (SVC) storage virtualization engine.

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