A Game-Changing Approach to Flash

A Game-Changing Approach to Flash


DriveScale reached a significant milestone this week with the launch of the first software composable flash solution. After pioneering the composability of compute and disk storage, we extended the benefits of composable infrastructure to applications using flash storage. Targeted are the most demanding, high performance applications such as NoSQL/N*SQL databases and in-memory applications such as Spark. DriveScale’s SCI for Flash is an industry first.  Not only that, DriveScale is among the first vendors to bring a NVMe over Fabric solution to market.

Why is it so important to compose flash storage? There is an opportunity to accelerate the deployment of flash by driving down costs, while at the same time improving SLAs and ease of use by using composability.

The use of flash is hindered by the two existing deployment models: flash pre- configured inside servers and flash storage arrays.

  • When pre-configured inside servers, flash is chronically over-provisioned and under-utilized leading to wasted resources
  • Flash storage arrays draw their feature sets from the hard drive disk world supporting traditional Relational Database Management System based applications. These features are not needed by modern cluster based distributed applications, and in fact, increase cost and slow performance.

DriveScale’s SCI for Flash offers a new and better way. It allows customers to create the right ratio of flash and compute resources and then change it at any time as requirements change. This eliminates the need to over-provision upfront. Pay-as -you-grow! And with connection through NVMe over Fabrics and the use of 100 Gbit switches, DriveScale’s Software Composable Flash delivers the same flash performance as embedded drives. Finally, the customer has choice by buying NVMe Flash drives from their favorite vendor, securing very competitive pricing.

Other benefits of DriveScale’s Software Composable Flash include:

Spend less on infrastructure and operations:

  • Dynamically vary the amount of compute assigned to a particular data set, even removing compute from the data set when the application isn’t running.
  • Upgrade in-system performance and flash capacity seamlessly, as needed reducing operational costs and system downtime significantly
  • Upgrade processors while saving your investment in flash drives by easily “de-composing” the drives from the old servers and “re-composing” them with the new servers.
  • Significantly improve resiliency and failure recovery

Integrate quickly and easily into your environment:

  • Purchase standard commodity flash drives from our list of qualified part numbers
  • Make no changes to the software stack
  • Easily turn on application level data encryption for your entire clusters and let DriveScale manage the keys.

DriveScale’s Software Composable Flash solution is part of a larger move to modernize data centers so that they benefit from the agility and superior economics of a public cloud by allocating resources on-demand and flexibly modifying those resources as workload demands change.

About the Author:

Gene has been a serial CEO for the past 15 years having been at the helm of three companies prior to DriveScale. NetContinuum developed an application layer firewall appliance for large enterprise and web businesses and was sold to Barracuda Networks. Zero Motorcycles is the leading electric motorcycle company in the world and Gene remains on the Board of Directors. ClearPower Systems designed a waste heat recovery electric power generation system and was sold to Questor Technologies. A member of the senior management team at Sun Microsystems, Gene was Sr. Vice President/General Manager of the $4 billion/year Desktop Systems group. He also led the Workstation product group, pioneering the company’s first thin client technology, leading Sun’s first ODM deal and sponsoring the acquisition and open-sourcing of the Star Office suite, which propelled it to a globally-trusted brand. Gene was based in Japan for five years as President of Nihon-Sun, expanding Sun’s business fourfold to $800M and raising Japan’s share of Sun’s worldwide business from 9 percent to 16 percent, substantially outgrowing Sun’s business elsewhere. Gene received an A.B. in Physics from the University of California at Berkeley and an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University.

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