Computer Business Review

5 flash array storage solutions worth considering

Duncan MacRae

10:07, July 4 2014

Some of the best offerings from HP, Dell, Pure Storage, Skyera and Nimbus Data.

Skyera skyHawk

The skyHawk, which recently became available in the UK, is an all-flash enterprise solid-state storage system built from the ground up in an effort to provide the most demanding enterprise customers with best-of-breed hardware and software.

Described as "completely integrated and completely seamless", Skera says the storage platform combines affordability and performance in the "only viable all-flash array to break the price barrier for mainstream enterprise storage".

skyHawk's vertically integrated hardware and software solution combines the attributes of a purpose-built flash storage array, designed to maximise flash performance, with a rich feature set of storage software tools.

With this solution, enterprise customers can utilise solid-state technology as a direct replacement for traditional hard disk drives, bringing "unparalleled performance, speed and capacity" to all of their applications, while reducing costs for power consumption and physical space.

What Skyera says:

- High performance and low latency to meet broad data requirements.
- Superior data reduction to minimize storage costs.
- Superior power, cooling and space utilisation achieve lower total cost of ownership.

Pure Storage FlashArray 405

This is an entry-level array for midsized companies, distributed operations and single-application deployments.

As Pure Storage says: "Don't let its small size fool you." The FA-405 aims to punch above its weight, offering up to 40TB of usable space in a 1U controller form factor, making it ideal for top-of-rack and entry-level configurations. Running on the same Purity 4.0 software as its higher capacity counterparts, the FA-405 has been designed to deliver all the power, performance and enterprise-class features of the Pure Storage's FA-420 and FA-450 arrays, with the budget and space conscious requirements of smaller and distributed businesses in mind.

The FA-405 could also be ideal for single-application starter deployments, such as VDI pilots or single database acceleration, and can be upgraded non-disruptively to a FA-420 or FA-450 system, as a customer's capacity or performance needs expand.

What Pure Storage says:

- Up to 100,000 32K IOPS @ <1ms average latency.
- 3 GB/s bandwidth.
- Up to 40+ TBs effective capacity.
- 2.75-11 TB raw capacity.
- 4 x 10 Gb/s Ethernet iSCSI or
- 4 x 8 Gb/s Fibre Channel and 4 x 10Gb/s Ethernet iSCSI or
- 4 x 10 Gb/s Ethernet iSCSI (all 405 systems include Replication Ports).

Nimbus Data Gemini F400 and F600

Nimbus Data claims its all-flash arrays, Gemini F400 and F600, break new ground as the first arrays to utilise 1x nanometer MLC flash, directly challenging hybrid HDD/SSD arrays on cost-per-gigabyte for server virtualisation and VDI while delivering the superior reliability, consistent performance, and lower operating costs of all-flash storage.

The Gemini F400 and F600 also set new performance records, deliver 2-5x greater IOps and lower latency than competing offerings, strengthening Nimbus Data's position in the market in low-latency applications like databases, analytics, and OLTP, according to the company.

What Nimbus Data says:

- 100% flash memory for unrivalled performance.
- Industry's best efficiency and lowest operating costs.
- High availability with no single-point-of-failure.
- FC, iSCSI, NFS, SRP, IPoIB, RDMA, and SMB protocols.
- Patent-pending architecture and flash management.
- Ethernet, Fibre Channel and Infiniband connectivity.
- Complete data protection and optimisation software.
- Hot-swap everything with live expansion/upgrades.

HP 3PAR StoreServ 7450

The HP 3PAR StoreServ 7450 storage is marketed as the only all-flash array in the industry that delivers the performance advantages of a purpose-built, flash-optimised architecture without compromising resiliency, efficiency, or data mobility. A flash-optimised architecture reduces the performance bottlenecks that can choke general-purpose disk arrays that have been retrofitted with solid-state disks (SSDs).

However, unlike other purpose-built flash arrays, HP says the 3PAR StoreServ 7450 doesn't require you to introduce an entirely new architecture into your environment to achieve flash-optimised performance.

You could accelerate business agility by boosting application performance with more than 900,000 IOPS at less than 0.7 milliseconds (ms) latency while delivering the same Tier 1 data services from the storage platform that powers 3 of the world's 4 largest Managed Service Providers.

What HP says:

- Achieve sub-millisecond response time for your critical applications by hosting them on HP 3PAR StoreServ 7450 Storage.
- Consolidate numerous applications without compromising on performance.
- Lower your data centre power consumption and space requirements with 3PAR all flash array.
- Scale non-disruptively to four nodes, adding performance and capacity.

Source: Company Press Release


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