Archive for the ‘FLASH Storage’ Category

2017 – New Year, New Transformation

Howard Rubin

Consultant Product Marketing Manager, Dell EMC Storage Division
My name is Howard and I’m a marketing guy. There I said it! Admitting to it is the first step right? Truth be known, I started “life” as a phone support guy then got promoted to Sales Engineer due to my good looks. That role dragged on far too long. Hanging out in data centers at 3am installing and troubleshooting ATM and Frame Relay gear got old; just like that technology. When I’m not marketing tech stuff, I’m either playing with my own tech gear at home or travelling to some exotic destination with my incredible wife, Mary. Fifty/Fifty chance it’s a shopping or exotic beach destination next time you get my out-of-office message.

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As we transition to a new year many people will make a resolution to do things better in life; to transform the way they live and interact in the world.  Some get a new job to increase life satisfaction, to make more money or quite simply live a healthier lifestyle. As a legacy EMC employee, we, as a company are transitioning to Dell EMC for the better.  And to do that, we must continue to operate flawlessly into 2017 and beyond for our customers.  We here at Dell EMC also want to see. our customers flawlessly transform  their data center for the better.

VMAX All Flash Transormation

For our customers running VMAX 1 and VMAX 2 (10/20/40K) platforms, refreshing to a new VMAX All Flash delivers incredible operational and TCO benefits.  We created VMAX All Flash to allow you run your business more effectively. Not only is it easy to purchase, migrate to and grow, but it’s so much simpler to manage.  Add to that the cost savings in footprint and consolidation and a storage managers life couldn’t get much better.

Here’s a quick example of a customer that did a VMAX 20K refresh to a new VMAX 450F. This customer had a 9-Bay VMAX 20K with 800TB of usable capacity.  We transformed them from a 9 rack VMAX 20K to a single bay/single floor tile VMAX 450F.  This new model delivered 6x more performance,  87% less energy, 92% less footprint with a whopping 40% lower TCO.

VMAX All Flash Performance (more…)

#YOAF! Looking at Another Year of IT Transformation

This year we continued our dialogue with our customers and partners to help them pursue their IT transformation in order to free up funds and resources to pursue strategic projects to chip away at digital transformation. But where to start?

Step 1: Consider Flash as a Key Enabler to IT Transformation
In a previous blog I wrote about the pillars of the modern data center. No doubt Flash is a critical component within our IT transformation journey. Sure, Flash is media but is also an enabling technology like CPUs, DRAM, and protocols like NVMe that seem to be in a perpetual race for speed. Our job at Dell EMC is to extract maximum value from these innovations for the benefit of the customer. Flash drives are known for speed. But in reality they enable us to consolidate and save money as well. Let’s look at a 16 TB 3-D NAND drive.

IT-Transformation

Within a 2.5” form factor I get the following relative to a spinning drive:

  1. More capacity and performance density = greater consolidation all else equal.
  2. Lower and more consistent response times = better SLAs and more productivity.
  3. Fewer parts replacements and faster rebuilds = lower risk and better customer experience.

Step 2: Understand the Business Value of Flash for Your Environment
Every environment is unique. So making broad claims of how great the technology of vendor A is compared to vendor B is counterproductive. Rather, we should approach things a little more customer centric.  A good place to start is the workload. Over the decades our performance optimized storage systems (aka SC Series, Unity, VMAX, XtremIO) supported databases as the #1 workload, followed by virtual servers. Both combined accounted for over 80% of the supported workloads on these systems.

If we just stick to the database example for a minute, the next step would be to actually understand the current database workload in more detail. One way our world class Sales Engineers do that is to take samples from the customer environment like the Oracle AWR below. Think of it as the top down approach where we want to understand the impact of transformation for the specific database environment. (more…)

You Don’t Have to Divide – Just Rule the Database Workloads

Bala Chandrasekaran

Principal Product Marketing Manager, Dell EMC
Bala Chandrasekaran is a Principal Product Marketing Manager at Dell EMC and delivers marketing efforts for All Flash primary storage. He brings to Dell EMC his 12 years of IT industry experience across various customer facing roles including pre-sales, consulting and technical services. He is a certified professional in IBM DB2 and Oracle Databases. He has an undergraduate engineering degree from Anna University, India and MBA from Foster School of Business of University of Washington.

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In the digital economy, there is immense value in drawing real-time business insights from organizations’ own transactional systems. However, it is not uncommon for a business to wait several hours before actual sales report or the inventory statuses are made available.

Typically, enterprise IT divides business processes into online transaction processing (OLTP), batch and analytic/reporting workloads. In order to meet the performance and scalability needs of these workloads, IT teams built systems that are optimized to execute one or the other. This complex ‘divide and conquer’ approach for database workloads leads to both business and IT complexities. For example, complex queries involved in reporting workloads would require indexes to produce reports quickly but having too many indexes on a transactional table would cost OLTP performance.

One of the top reasons our customers choose us as they modernize their data centers is the value our comprehensive portfolio offers. With our All Flash storage, our customers not only reduce the batch reporting duration but also enable new business process workflows along with integrated Copy Data Management (iCDM) solution.

The scale-out architecture of our storage systems enables them to consolidate multiple database workloads and comfortably deliver consistent performance to the applications. With virtual copies technologies, such as XtremIO Virtual Copies (XVC), database copies for workloads such as reporting and testing could be provisioned without traditional time overhead.

workloads

As shown above, with the full-featured AppSync Starter bundle, our customers are able to automate the entire workflow of making and provisioning application-consistent database copies in 3 simple steps:

  1. Centrally define source hosts and let AppSync automatically discover the databases.
  2. Customize the database cloning process to prepare the database for the target workload:
    1. AppSync allows administrators to add or modify database initialization parameters ideal for the target workload. Do you need to use a larger value for DB_FILE_MULTIBLOCK_READ_COUNT to improve IOs on table scan? No problem!
    2. AppSync can execute user scripts before making a copy or after mounting a database. Do you need to create that index required for your complex queries involved in reporting? No problem!
  3. With the ability to define service plans, administrators can automate the creation and deletion of virtual copies.

As decision-making windows shrink for most digital businesses, they require a different approach to retrieve information out of their own transactional systems. Storage plays a vital role in enabling data agility and with the right solution, IT teams can enable information flow that modern-day businesses require.

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Chhandomay Mandal

Director of Solution Marketing, EMC All-Flash Storage
Chhandomay Mandal, a 20+ year storage industry veteran, is the Director of Solution Marketing for EMC All-Flash Storage. He is currently responsible for the integrated leadership of all EMC All-Flash End User Computing (EUC) solutions enablement, partnering, and business development. Prior to EMC, Chhandomay led Dell’s storage solutions marketing efforts for desktop virtualization, server virtualization and private cloud. He spent 11 years at Sun Microsystems holding different leadership positions across marketing and engineering organizations. Chhandomay has been awarded 13 patents by US Patent and Trademark Office. He has a PhD in Computer Science from University of Florida, MBA from Kelley Business School of Indiana University, and BTech from Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur.

As customers modernize their data centers, they are increasingly adopting an all-flash strategy. Flash enables them to be fast, agile and efficient. It has become affordable too – flash is finally cheaper than the fastest spinning media, 15K RPM disks. 2016 is the Year of All Flash (YOAF). In these series of posts, I am going to chronicle many of our customers journey to the all-flash era.

red soxI would love to start with my beloved Red Sox. Living in the Boston area for 20+ years, I am an ardent fan; so are other fourteen million New Englanders. In the past decade, The Boston Red Sox have won three World Series and is a perennial contender. What is their secret?

Professional sports is like any business where disruption is happening primarily driven by technology. It comes to play in all the four areas of the The Boston Red Sox business environment. They really have to have exceptional systems and analytics for Baseball Operations for the team to be competitive. Front office environment needs to ensure that they are running an efficient business. Understanding the fans and creating a great digital experience in the ballpark complementing the game is another critical element. Finally, having an exceptional IT operational environment allows them to support all these things ensuring The Boston Red Sox are being the best as they can be as an organization and as a sports franchise. (more…)

Cars, Trucks, and VMAX All Flash

Chad Desilets

Product Marketing Manager, Dell EMC
Chad is a recent graduate of Framingham State University where he studied Corporate and Organizational Communication. Starting as an intern in Global Services while completing his degree, he is now part of the VMAX product marketing team. Having a passion for effectively communicating impactful messaging has allowed Chad to find a home in marketing. Being a fan of all things high performance, especially cars, it’s only natural that Chad’s focus is on VMAX. Outside of the office, Chad enjoys time with friends and family, working on automobiles, and spending his summers on the water in coastal Rhode Island.

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Buying a new car can be incredibly stressful, yet almost everyone goes through it at some point. How do you choose which car to get? What kind of vehicle do you need? How do you configure it? What manufacturer do you buy from? The list of questions goes on and on.

VMAX All Flash

Consumers have endless choices of vehicles, so where do they start? Many people turn to the numbers, assessing which vehicle got the best ratings. The same can be said about businesses upgrading their data center. They want to buy storage they know is going to be reliable and meet their demands.

Purchasing a new primary storage array for your modern data center in many ways is similar to purchasing a new car. CIO’s and businesses ask themselves the same questions, and also want to make sure they are spending their budget on the right product. They try to check all the right boxes: amazing performance, efficiency, features, safety, and reliability.

Performance
Vehicles that offer incredible handling and huge amounts of horsepower may be exactly what a customer wants. For others, a truck that has the performance to tow your boat to the lake in the summer is desired. No matter what the exact need is, customers require their purchase to meet their expectations every day. CIO’s require high performance and incredible speed from their storage arrays. They need storage that is going to get the job done and keep up with demanding workloads.

Efficiency
A vehicle can be economical in many ways. It can have great fuel-efficiency, take up less space and/or have very low cost of ownership. Space in the data center is extremely valuable and it can fill up quickly. This of course generates a lot of heat and raises operating costs. Businesses need arrays that are efficient both in space and operating costs. The more storage you can fit on one floor tile the better.

Features
When it comes to new vehicles, configuration options such as navigation and leather seats are endless and can easily drive the price tag up! CIOs want features that make their job and their employees’ jobs easier for the least amount of additional cost.  These features should allow users to get the most out of the array and its capabilities.

Safety
Everybody likes the idea of knowing all the passengers in their car are safe. For this reason we like the idea of more safety features because we simply never know when an accident could occur. In this data driven world, customers want the same safety for their data because their companies depend on it. When it comes to mission-critical storage, safety is a top priority.

 Reliability
Everyday reliability is a major factor for consumers; they depend on their vehicles every day and they want the most out of their purchase. The same could be said about storage arrays. Businesses wouldn’t be able to function if they had long lengths of downtime. They need their primary storage arrays to be up and running all the time, no matter what.

VMAX All Flash
Purchasing a primary storage array is a big investment and CIO’s and business need to ensure they’re getting the right product to fit all their wants and needs. Dell EMC understands this as the market share leader in all-flash storage. Our mission-critical VMAX All Flash checks all the boxes that CIOs and businesses are looking for.

  • Performance- Dell EMC customers demand extreme performance from their VMAX All Flash and it always delivers. VMAX All Flash is blazing fast, delivering up to 4 million IOPS and 150GB per second, and thanks to cache memory, application response times are achieving 200 microseconds.
  • Efficiency- The VMAX All Flash family is extremely efficient. With inline compression, 2:1 reduction can be seen, and when combined with high efficiency snaps and zero space reclaim 4:1 storage efficiency is achieved. VMAX All Flash also has the capability to consolidate up to 4 PBe of block, file, open systems, and IBM i! This lowers total cost of ownership by reducing operating expenses and physical footprint in your data center.
  • Features- We made configuring VMAX All Flash as easy as possible, with two software packages: the F and FX packages. Every VMAX All Flash array ships with the F software package and for only 15% more you get the entire FX software package, which includes everything in the F suite plus data services such as SRDF and Unisphere, our management software! Of course, VMAX data services are available a la carte, so you can buy only what you need! Imagine if configuring a new vehicle was this simple…
  • Safety- VMAX All Flash offers rich data services such as D@RE (data at rest encryption) and SRDF active-active replication. This allows for your data to be protected and your business ready for any outage. Dell EMC ProtectPoint allows VMAX All Flash to seamlessly backup to Data Domain. This eliminates the need for traditional backup applications all while operating non-intrusively and 20 times faster. With VMAX All Flash, your data is always protected.
  • Reliability- VMAX All Flash offers just that. Mission-critical availability, active-active data center replication, non-disruptive hardware and software upgrades, and no-single point-of-failure architecture all working together to deliver over 6 nines of availability. VMAX All Flash runs at peak performance day after day, year after year. That makes VMAX a solid investment for your modern data center.

Purchasing a new car or an all-flash array is a big investment. These purchases sit in your data center, or driveway, for years to come, so you want to know that what you chose is going to last and that you will be satisfied every day. Automobile companies offer warranty with their vehicles, so buyers know that they are protected should anything come up down the road. Well, when it comes to primary storage how about this for peace of mind: all of our all-flash arrays come backed by the Xpect More Program, protecting you with a 3-year money back warranty, lifetime flash endurance protection, and lifetime maintenance price protection. Combine this with Dell EMC’s award winning global service and support and you have a real winner. VMAX All Flash is an amazing offering that checks all the boxes CIOs and businesses are looking for.

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