Flash storage in some hybrid arrays can cost four times as much per gigabyte as it does in all-flash arrays, putting traditional vendors at a major disadvantage in the emerging marketplace. All-flash arrays depend on aggressive, 6:1 inline data reduction (DRe) technologies to bring their cost per Gbyte closer to that of spinning media. However, hybrid arrays from many traditional storage vendors, which add a flash cache tier to boost the performance of legacy systems, have so far lacked this technology, which makes their flash effectively four times more expensive, writes Wikibon CTO David Floyer in a new report entitled Permabit Throws a Data Reduction Lifeline to Legacy Arrays.
As the amount of Tier 1 data Increases along with user demand for flash-level performance, companies are under pressure to replace their existing spinning disk systems with all-flash alternatives faster than they might do otherwise.
Permabit Technology Corp. is coming to the rescue of these older arrays with its SANblox OEM tool, a DRe appliance that traditional storage vendors can add to the front-ends of their hybrid arrays to provide inline data reduction comparable to that of the all-flash array vendors.
Wikibon believes that eventually all Tier 1 storage will migrate to all-flash arrays and high-performance spinning disk will disappear, Floyer writes. However, today many companies can be well-served by adding flash to their existing high-performance disk systems, leveraging their existing investment while meeting user needs for higher performance. Traditional vendors who lack their own in-line DRe can add Permabit’s solution to bring their hybrid flash up to the efficiency of the all-flash arrays.
Floyer’s full, extensive analysis of the relative advantages of hybrid arrays with and without DRe versus all-flash arrays is available without charge on the Wikibon website. Interested IT professionals can apply for free membership in the Wikibon community, which allows them to influence the direction and participate in Wikibon research and to post their own tips, comments and original research.