Reminders

Infrastructure and Data Management

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Some Thoughts on the Demise of Violin Memory

By Eric Burgener

Violin Memory, one of the early high flyers in the All Flash Array (AFA) space, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December 2016. This blog discusses some of the issues around their predicament, and takes a look at how the AFA market's use of custom flash modules (CFMs) (which Violin used in the Flash Storage Platform) has been impacted in enterprise-class arrays over the last couple of years.


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The upcoming OpenStack Summit in Barcelona builds on a familiar theme: The unprecedented momentum that OpenStack has gained (and continues to gain) amongst firms of all shapes and sizes: enterprises, cloud and telecom services providers and hyperscalers. At the summit, the community will seek to showcase the fruits of streamlining product development and project coordination, maintaining currency with market trends, and more importantly that it is actively listening to its constituents of developers, end-users and vendors. IDC anticipates that their release message for the “Newton” release “One versatile platform” backed by key themes such as scalability, resiliency and user experience, will resonate stronger and louder with attendees, setting the stage for an even bigger footprint for OpenStack in 2017.


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As flash storage and network throughput evolve through the next several technology generations, a significant imbalance looms. As organizations decide which storage architecture they should go with - network storage or hyperconverged - it is important to understand how these two technologies are evolving in their own IT infrastructure.


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At the recently held HPE Discover conference, HPE made Synergy - it's foray into Composable Infrastructure solutions. This announcement is timely as IDC is in the process of formalizing its research on Composable and Disaggregated Infrastructure. This blog post is meant to provide a quick take on how IDC's views this technology, and the impact it will have on the storage, server and networking markets.


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Starting with the June 2016 Tracker release, we will be using an updated All Flash Array (AFA) taxonomy that is more inclusive. In a nutshell any arrays that ship from the factory in all-flash configurations and do NOT optionally support hard disk drives (HDDs) will be considered AFAs. There will be three classes (or types) of AFAs, defined based on pedigree, to help customers understand key differences between them.


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Performance Games?

By Eric Burgener

Performance numbers released by vendors about their storage arrays are often based on "hero tests" that do not provide much help in communicating how a system will perform on real-world workloads. Should the vendor community strive for more realistic tests, or should customers come to better understand the limitations of existing tests? This blog explores these topics based on an informal lunch time round table discussion at IDC Directions West on March 2.


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This blog post discusses flash-enabled storage architectures like the new EMC VMAX All-Flash that will continue to underpin the modern datacenter, but additionally enable new workloads and drive economic benefits. Flash has compelled storage suppliers like EMC to go back to the drawing board – to re-engineer storage architectures and capitalize on the transformational value of flash. The results are systems like the VMAX All Flash, which delivers unprecedented levels of performance and scale while bringing the gold standard of VMAX services that customers have come to rely on.


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Recent data from IDC research shows that show why dedicated IP storage networks have become the preferred industry solution not only for today’s workloads, but for the future growth in new applications that businesses will require. The bottom line is that businesses already utilize storage-optimized networks for mission-critical storage traffic—and increasingly they must treat business-critical applications in the same manner.


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The Evolving All Flash Array (AFA) Market

By Eric Burgener

Having just completed an extensive evaluation of what IDC considers to be the relevant players in the AFA market with the IDC AFA MarketScape, several things are becoming increasingly clear to me about this market:


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The shift to the 3rd Platform will be remarkable but disruptive. IDC predicts that virtually all new strategic IT investments made by enterprises through 2020 will go toward 3rd Platform technologies and solutions. The software-defined IT infrastructure that supports next-generation 3rd Platform applications must be agile, resilient, scalable on demand, and manageable in a capex-friendly fashion. As suppliers prepare to deliver this next-generation infrastructure, they'll need to focus on providing value via a portfolio of offerings — each designed to serve as a cog in a "cloud scale" datacenter. The ScaleIO Node from EMC is an example of such an offering. The 3rd Platform is the new core of IT market growth — and software-defined storage (infrastructure) is a crucial element of that growth.


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IDC's Infrastructure and Data Management Blog is the home for IDC storage analysts to share their thoughts on technology, market and industry trends, announcements, movers and shakers, innovative ideas, and recent research.

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