In the past week, there has been a lot of noise and discussion around NAS and SSD. We certainly welcome the conversation because it’s one in which we’ve been engaged for several years. And we’ve seen first-hand that customers are interested in having a network attached storage solution based on Flash.
So, is this new news? In terms of SSD arrays systems supporting NAS device, no. That was introduced to the market about 3 years ago. It’s what WHIPTAIL offers – and what we have been offering since 2009 – in real time. If customers want NAS services with Flash TODAY (instead of, say Q4), we call that ACCELA.
Additionally, customers don’t want to choose between NAS and SAN for Flash, they want both. They want to choose certain volumes for each in their SSD arrays because they have high performance applications that need to be accessed in different ways. In essence, they don’t want Flash with limits.
Customers have accessed HDD based NAS solutions for years via Server Message Block (SMB) and NFS. Today, customers can utilize SSD based NAS and realize higher performance alongside lower CapEx and OpEx. When a customer experiences higher performance and savings for file services, that is a win. And when the same customer can experience high application performance and savings for file and block-based data, we call that a victory.
Businesses must maintain high levels of application performance and reduce Data Center expense-related power, cooling and floor space. The only way to achieve those goals is to consolidate performance-demanding NAS and SAN applications on SSDs. Separating applications across storage devices is something you no longer have to do for NAS and SAN.
WHIPTAIL provides file services on our platform that supports SMB, and we support NAS and other protocols, concurrently. Did we mention we’re in our second generation of this? It is in the market. It is available. And it is here TODAY.
That’s not to say dedicated NAS arrays aren’t useful, but customers don’t necessarily want to buy Flash for one purpose. They want to do both NAS and block. They need to have options.
What about storage and the Cloud? Cloud providers, public or private, must deliver performance to their customers at the lowest cost, and the products offered need to be easy-to-use. The goal is to reduce costs in power and footprint, and to diminish performance tuning – reducing the management overhead. The best way to meet each of these conditions is with Flash, specifically MLC Flash.
Performance challenges are no longer an issue. Customers can protect their investment and have the ability to scale for multiple purposes. All-flash NAS solutions are not a new addition to the storage menu. We started serving it in 2009.