What does 2015 hold in store for flash arrays?
Let’s examine a couple of market dynamics that point beyond storage solutions, to a more balanced server architecture:
- Intel is introducing new, more powerful servers
- Microsoft Windows® 2003 servers are no longer being supported
- SQL Server® 2005 is reaching its end-of-life, as are other database upgrades to support in-memory computing
These faster servers will require storage upgrades, and another 2015 dynamic that makes an all flash storage array potential reality is our partner NetApp. On January 27th of this year, the Storage Performance Council (SPC) released a benchmark study, and NetApp’s All-Flash FAS and new EF560 performed particularly well. In fact, the report found that the new EF560 leads in price-performance for all-flash arrays with an average response time of under one millisecond.
In a recent IDC whitepaper – Attributes of SAN-Based Storage Infrastructure Required for Today’s Diverse Set of Mission-Critical Workloads – IDC found the EF-series helps support application workload and network performance improvements nicely:
With so many applications being rearchitected to maximize IOPs, the need for infrastructure that can support these workloads is growing rapidly. And while networks are improving at considerable rates to support such changes, both the application and the network would be underserved without comparable performance gains from storage systems like NetApp’s EF-Series arrays. In short, the EF-Series all-flash array completes the storage performance solution required for extreme performance while ensuring improvements in operational efficiency and enterprise reliability.
So while today, flash might be best served alongside spinning media, the improvements being made in application and network architecture in the very near future, may very well push all flash arrays into mainstream reality.