Four years, tens of thousands of end-users and trillions of IO after WHIPTAIL debuted its first entirely flash-based storage array, the industry leader continues to revolutionize the storage sector with its scalable products. Supported by a proprietary operating system and multi-tenancy architecture, ACCELA, INVICTA and INVICTA INFINITY allow businesses to move their data at the speed of life.
- 1 – 9 Application Workloads
- 250,000 IOPS
- 1.9 GB/s
- 1.5 – 12 TB
- 1 – 60 Application Workloads
- 650,000 IOPS
- 7 GB/s
- 6 – 72 TB
- 2 – 6 Nodes
- 1 – 300 Application Workloads
- 800,000 – 4,000,000 IOPS
- 40 GB/s
- 84 – 360 TB
- 7 – 30 Nodes
WHIPTAIL’s proprietary operating system, RACERUNNER, enables the arrays to achieve high throughput, high IOPS, ultra-low latency, along with multiple other product features.... more
Expandability and Scalability
Expand a Silicon Storage Node (SSNs) by adding additional drives. Scale an ACCELA array into an INVICTA by adding nodes.... more
The RACERUNNER OS treats write requests in a manner that best accommodates flash architecture.... more
Data is protected with LUN mirroring, asynchronous replication, hot swappable components and other features.... more
Fibre Channel, iSCSI, Infiniband/SRP and NFS are each supported.... more
100% NAND Flash Media
WHIPTAIL arrays utilize cost effective MLC NAND flash drives.... more
Enterprises can manage their storage architecture by delegating roles, assigning and managing LUNs, building storage pools, monitoring and much more.... more
INFINITY Flexibile Backplane
Redundant Infiniband modules allow for massive scalability.... more
With Global Support, customers have 24x7 telephone support, four hour onsite repair, hardware cold spare kit, among other support features.... more
Data centers can replace fully-populated storage shelves with eco-friendly 2U WHIPTAIL arrays at a 1:30 ratio, reducing power consumption and floor space by as much as 90%.... more
The array's operating system, RACERUNNER, extends the lifetime of the drives and dramatically optimizes the potency of the underlying Flash architecture.... more
Because WHIPTAIL’s solid-state drives (SSDs) do not have moving heads and rotating platters, every block is accessible at the same speed as every other block. Customers will see incredible increases in performance, up to 30X (60X latency advantage).... more
WHIPTAIL’s Flash-based solutions protect your data by allowing you to choose the method and level of redundancy appropriate for your business.... more
WHIPTAIL understands the typical difficulties found in complex, real-world production environments and reflects that understanding in the design, features, options and support offerings of our products.... more
|Application Workloads||1 – 9||1 – 60||1 – 300|
|Nodes||2 – 6||7 – 30|
|Storage Capacity||1.5 – 12 TB||6 – 72 TB||84 – 360 TB|
|Performance||250,000 IOPS||650,000 IOPS||800,000 – 4,000,000 IOPS|
|Bandwidth||1.9 GB/s||7 GB/s||40 GB/s|
Business performance is defined by the efficacy of its workloads. Faster workloads convert data to information sooner, yielding vastly improved business agility. With WHIPTAIL's flash-based storage arrays it’s possible to unleash the full potential of application workloads while reducing overall costs.
Our VDI deployment was at a standstill. We couldn’t get our pilot group past a certain performance threshold because of the limitation of our current hardware infrastructure. Our peers were recommending we look into WHIPTAIL that with its performance, price and ease of use, it may be the missing link we were looking for. As it turns out, they were right.
WHIPTAIL provides an integrated solid state appliance approach, while alternative solutions required another vendor to provide software or hardware. We have the flexibility to add an additional storage tier without the performance and capital costs we would have incurred with other options.
After deploying WHIPTAIL’s silicon storage solution we have found our virtual environment is running 4X faster and the help desk calls have stopped completely. Those reports that took hours now only take minutes. The 10X increase in improved performance offers us a distinct competitive advantage.
In segregating Exchange 2010 to WHIPTAIL’s silicon storage solution, we’ve seen a huge increase in the speed and response time and were able to mitigate our overall capacity needs to a major degree. It has become the key element of our virtualization strategy.
Its wear endurance software is a huge advantage and one of the single biggest reasons we went with WHIPTAIL—it’s purpose-built. Plain and simple.
What I like most about WHIPTAIL’s family of products is the scalability and investment protection it offers…
People always think about size when buying storage, when they should really be thinking about performance first. I always had plenty of free space on my old arrays, but I could not take advantage of the space due to performance problems.
The Pensions Trust is a leading multi-employer occupational pension fund for the Third Sector in the UK. Established over 60 years ago, The Pensions Trust has assets of more than £4.41 billion and serves over 150,000 employers and members.
The Pensions Trust was well into the process of rolling out a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) with VMware’s View solution. However, this change in their computing architecture was hindered by a lack of 10 throughput with their existing hard-disk drive SAN. Users complained of slow responses during VMware View operations such as a Recompose or when anti-virus scanning took place.
“View was the elegant VDI solution that met our requirements. However, since virtualized desktop infrastructures inherently require high WRITE lOs, the major challenges we experienced with VDI were wrapped around storage performance. We decided to find a more VDI-friendly storage alternative,” said Darren Bull, Business Support Manager, The Pensions Trust.
“When looking at how we could increase performance with our existing SAN, the only option was to add way more storage capacity than we actually needed just to get the spindle count necessary to achieve the required
10 throughput. Estimates of VDI requirements that I have seen state that each XP virtual desktop requires 20-30 lOPS, with Windows 7 being higher still. Assuming a normal SAN disk delivers 150 lOPS, our requirements of 200 virtual desktops would require 26 traditional disks (15TB) @ 20 lOPS, 40 (24TB) if we assume 30 lOPS. Admittedly, some of these figures are up for discussion. What cannot be disputed is that we were going to require a lot of disk. Given the cost for a shelf of disks from our normal storage vendors, costs for this would have been unacceptable. Additionally, what a complete waste of disk space,” stated Mr. Bull.
The Pensions Trust decided to look for a more appropriate virtualization-friendly storage alternative. “There are a few solutions out there that attempt to solve this IO problem in different ways. Some storage vendors include a solid-state cache with their traditional disk arrays, however we found the cost of such systems to be out of our reach and in most cases they are only READ IO caches, wherein our VDI sessions need a high amount of WRITE IOs. Other vendors offer ‘man in the middle’ caching solutions that relieve the pressure on the underlying disk, however we felt that this added complexity to the solution that we could do without and again, from a cost standpoint, once we did our sums this type of solution didn’t really stack up for us,” noted Mr. Bull.
SEAMLESSLY DEPLOYED VMWARE VIEW ENVIRONMENT
“Our preference was always to implement a really fast SAN. Our preferred solution provider, Softcat, facilitated the evaluation of WHIPTAIL’s Virtual Desktop SAN appliance. Things that would typically be immediately noticeable to our VDI users, such as cloning operations occurring on the same LUN upon which they were working, boot storms, AV rollouts and so on disappeared immediately. We were able to watch an HD video on a VDI desktop whilst provisioning a desktop pool on the same LUN and rebooting about 50 others at the same time. Our viewing was uninterrupted and throughput disk latency was pretty much zero. If we had tried the same on our existing array we would have started to receive calls about slow performance immediately. Its performance on IOPS (especially WRITE IOPS) was dramatic. We were impressed and placed an order.”
Consolidate IT, a value–added distributor for WHIPTAIL in the UK and Europe, added: “With WHIPTAIL’s entirely flash-based architecture, customers now have a truly scalable centralized storage solution with all the known beneﬁts of a SAN. Years ago we introduced iSCSI as the storage protocol, now we introduce WHIPTAIL as the affordable SSD SAN,” said Jur Faber, CEO, Consolidate IT. “It’s perfect for VMware VDI and Database customers that simply do not accept the latency seen on standard mechanical storage, keeping the CPU and the customers waiting. The requirements that virtualization put on an enterprise’s storage infrastructure are heavy. WHIPTAIL
was born to handle this.”
“(Since WHIPTAIL) …users have stopped mentioning any slowness with our VMware View deployment. Helpdesk calls have reduced as a result. Most of the time our storage graphs are a flat line at zero latency. At its slowest it has always been much quicker than our old SAN on its best day. This implementation has enabled us to complete our VDI deployment with total conﬁdence that the underlying storage platform can handle anything we throw at it,” said Darren Bull, Business Support Manager, The Pensions Trust.
• VMware View virtual desktop infrastructure deployed successfully, ahead of project deadline
• Improved business flexibility
• Centralized infrastructure quickly realized return on investment and lowered total cost of ownership
• Increased user mobility and productivity
The Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) is responsible for overseeing a statewide system of support and services for the more than 80,000 Ohioans with developmental disabilities and their families. The DODD was challenged with several independent but equally mission-critical projects concurrently. After fully architecting and integrating VMware’s server virtualization into their environment, CIO Bryant Young knew critical projects lay ahead.
“Most importantly, we identified the need to better secure and manage the way data was being delivered to our clients and internal employees. Overlaying that with our need to rollout Windows 7 and integrate a broader DR/BC plan, a virtual desktop infrastructure was a natural ﬁt,” stated Bryant.
Selecting VMware’s View to enable his IT staff to change, update and provision applications rapidly, Kipp sees this shift to a virtualized desktop model as a key for business agility and enhanced data security. However, when they began their design and architecture of the 1,500-user VMware View environment, challenges surrounding the storage infrastructure appeared.
“We assumed we could do it through our original SAN, which was a bad assumption. Even if we could afford to expand our existing SAN, what happens if a production server or VDI users impact each other? We didn’t want to go down that road. We wanted an independent SAN appliance for the View environment,” noted Bryant. The DODD was not thrilled with the storage alternatives available. “We reviewed other storage options to support the View deployment. Our existing SAN vendor does support SSD as a cache, but when implementing VDI there are a lot of unknowns, especially on a broader scale such as ours which is in the thousands.”
With their IOPS per user landing somewhere in the 20-50 range, of which approximately 90% would be WRITE IOs, Bryant and his team were not afraid to look at a newer technology in the storage space. The poor response time typical of traditional storage removed it as an option.
With its incredible 250,000 WRITE IOPS and 95% savings on power, cooling and rack space the WHIPTAIL 2U solid-state solution became a focus for the DODD’s design.
“WHIPTAIL’s proprietary software spreads the writes around the complement of solid-state drives within its appliance. It’s actually built to accentuate SSDs and not just any array that has SSDs jammed into it. Their wear endurance software is a huge advantage and one of the single biggest reasons we went with WHIPTAIL . . . it’s purpose-built. Plain and simple.”
By offering 90% savings and immediate scalability when compared to their traditional storage arrays, Bryant added, “WHIPTAIL offered the opportunity for the DODD to accelerate the entire View deployment in this budget cycle. The existing SAN players are just not built this way. It’s like buying a series of minivans for capacity when what I really need is the performance of a Ferrari at the cost of a Honda.”
“We like companies that think outside the box and add business value to our enterprise. We are happy to jump on board with them and recognize that ROI and longterm, compelling TCO,” said Bryant.
The Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities’ deployment of VMware’s View virtual desktop software is one of the largest known state and local government rollouts in the USA. “We would not have been successful without this elegant solid-state array.”
• VMware View virtual desktop infrastructure deployed successfully and ahead of project deadline
• Centralized infrastructure quickly realized ROI and lowered TCO
• Increased user productivity via Windows 7 rollout
New Jersey-based inVentiv Health, Inc. is a global provider of value-added services to the pharmaceutical, life sciences and healthcare industries with over $800 million in revenue and 5,200 employees.
inVentiv Health’s mission critical application, SAS (Statistical Analysis System), suffered poor performance running on a virtualized Citrix XenApp 6 housed on a VMware ESX environment. “We had the application running on our traditional hard disk drive Fibre Channel storage array, but we had endless user complaints and we were fielding consistent calls and having to reboot the servers,” noted Tony Marando, manager of technical services at inVentiv Health. “We also experienced extremely long delays when conducting statistical analysis of data sets; what should have been a simple task was taking over 4 hours.”
inVentiv Health decided to look for a more appropriate storage solution. “We needed a way to really increase the underlying performance without breaking the bank – we just didn’t have the budget to keep buying more and more slow storage. WHIPTAIL was the perfect answer to our problem: a high-performing storage array that captures the speed of solid-state, but at a cost point that we could get on board with,” said Marando. “It’s about what we are paying per IO, not per GIG anymore–particularly for our more intensive applications.”
A FASTER VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENT
“After deploying WHIPTAIL’s silicon storage solution we have found our virtual environment is running 4X faster
and the help desk calls have stopped completely,” stated Marando. “Those reports that took hours now only take minutes…. The 10X increase in improved performance offers us a distinct competitive advantage.” “WHIPTAIL’s underlying flash-based architecture shows tremendous performance. We were able to stop overprovisioning in spindles (while wasting capacity) to try to optimize the underlying storage,” added Marando.
• Virtual environment running 4X faster with WHIPTAIL’s silicon storage
• Improved performance gives competitive advantage
• Statistical Analysis System performance optimized
• Dramatic decrease in help desk calls and user complaints
Finkelstein & Partners is an internationally respected legal firm with offices distributed throughout North America. When recently faced with design and architecture options for their next-generation build of a critical application infrastructure, Finkelstein & Partners elected to focus their search on solid-state storage technology. It is a much higher-performing and “greener” storage alternative to traditional 15k RPM spinning disk.
Similar to many of today’s enterprises that have grown weary of allocating 60-70% of overall IT budgets on storage, Finkelstein was anxious to take advantage of the performance and savings on space and power that solid-state technology offers. Based on this promise, Finkelstein turned to a newer vendor on the storage landscape, WHIPTAIL.
WHIPTAIL has been producing enterprise-class flashbased SANs for 3 years, with its emphasis on removing the major roadblocks to deeper deployment of solid-state in enterprises: high price-point and limited endurance. In other words: it’s expensive and it wears out too fast. “When reviewing our requirements for performance and capacity, we were once again faced with provisioning way more capacity than we needed simply to have enough spindles to adequately handle the speed our applications needed. Virtualization is a beast on a hard-disk drive performance, and we didn’t want to continue down the road of spending a premium without seeing the results,” stated John Pasqualicchio, Senior Systems Administrator for Finkelstein & Partners.
The most signiﬁcant challenge Finkelstein faced moving to a more fully virtualized environment was meeting their storage performance needs without wastefully overprovisioning on slower, capacity-filled, traditional harddisk drive arrays. To get their new virtualization infrastructure up and running, the firm estimated it would need to purchase 14TB of capacity, but this would do nothing for the performance.
“I was very interested in WHIPTAIL’s high performance characteristic (250,000 IOPS at random 4K blocks),” Pasqualicchio said. “For the same cost as a traditional 14TB shelf of HDDs that we were considering, we purchased WHIPTAIL’s solid-state storage solution. That 7.5 TB efficiently scaled 4X beyond the more expensive hard-disk drives.”
WHIPTAIL’s silicon storage arrays are specifically designed to optimize IO-demanding VDI images. Random workloads such as those in virtualized environments are extremely challenging for traditional 15K RPM spinning disks. A fully loaded, production-ready virtual desktop image requires between 20-40 IOPS to run at an acceptable level, 80 – 90% of that being WRITE IOPS. A standard HDD array only runs at 200 IOPS per drive. The math becomes binary at this point. WHIPTAIL’s product creates a dramatically larger performance pool, thereby eliminating disk contention and alleviating 90% of the storage costs associated with VDI. Since it is completely solid-state in nature, it offers 100X performance at 250,000 IOPS in a single 180 Watt 2U appliance.
“Various traditional storage vendors offer the caching modules, but they only emphasize read IOPS. We need WRITE IOPS,” stated Pasqualicchio. These compelling savings allowed them to break their vicious cycle of provisioning and over-provisioning on traditional HDD storage and its inherently high costs in power, cooling and retail rack space.
• Faster Applications
• Lowered cost
• Decreased use of space
“In segregating Exchange 2010 to WHIPTAIL’s silicon storage solution, we’ve seen a huge increase in the speed and response time,” stated Pasqualicchio. “It has become the key element of our virtualization strategy.”
• Dramatic increase in Microsoft Exchange performance
• Cost-effective scalability for virtual desktops
Like many forward-thinking municipalities, the City of Delaware, OH had invested in cutting edge technology to provide superior services to its population, but optimization of that technology proved to be problematic and expensive. This business brief addresses how Delaware leveraged WHIPTAIL silicon storage arrays to eliminate performance issues, reduce power consumption and increase the productivity of IT staff to better serve the community.
Of particular concern to the City of Delaware were significant issues with a permitting software application, a Geographic Information System (GIS) on a SQL server that is essential for managing the infrastructure capital assets of its public utilities. Before WHIPTAIL, the permitting software required more than 2 hours to process zoning reports for a weekly board meeting; now processing is immediate and there are no user complaints about performance.
The WHIPTAIL solutions created an environment with instantaneous performance of virtualized Tier 1 applications (including SQL databases, Microsoft Exchange 2010, Microsoft terminal servers), reduced the application server footprint from the 12 existing physical servers to 4 physical servers, eliminated the need for an intended but prohibitively expensive purchase of 50 additional servers, reduced power and cooling costs by 90% and reduced the total cost of ownership for data center rack space from $60,000 annually to $600 annually.
The City of Delaware (population 34,000+) is the seat of Delaware County, located about 30 miles north of downtown Columbus, Ohio’s state capitol. Delaware County has been the state’s fastest growing county for more than a decade and is among the top 20 fastest growing, wealthiest and most educated areas in the nation.
The total labor force of Delaware County is 43,800. The largest employers are manufacturers of automobile coatings, plastics, copper products, education, insurance, automobile parts and distribution, sports apparel, retail, services and government. The City of Delaware employs approximately 300 people. The City of Delaware, OH has been a WHIPTAIL customer since 2010.
• To virtualize Tier 1 applications, including SQL databases, Microsoft Exchange 2010 databases via iSCSI and Microsoft terminal servers that directly host compatible multi-user client desktops running on a variety of Windows-based and non Windows-based hardware (similar to Citrix XenApp)
• To eliminate performance issues with a permitting software application, a Geographic Information System on a SQL server, essential for managing infrastructure capital assets of public utilities
• To address end-user complaints about slow performance of applications, especially Exchange e-mail
• To virtualize the 12 existing physical servers in order to reduce latency, conserve space, lower power consumption and require minimal (or no) maintenance
• To overcome initial reluctance to virtualize due to concern about legacy storage performance
• To support customer requirements by providing the flexibility to operate over different protocols
After cost/benefit analysis of storage solutions proposed by competitors, the City of Delaware chose the WHIPTAIL silicon storage array.
The WHIPTAIL solution directly replaced 30 traditional 15,000 rpm, 300 GB drives and eliminated the need for the City of Delaware to purchase up to an additional 45 traditional disk drives to obtain the required performance.
The City of Delaware originally intended to overprovision to a total of 75 disk drives with 22.5 TB capacity to meet performance demands; however, a single, 6 TB WHIPTAIL silicon storage array, using the RACERUNNER Operating System, was able to replace Delaware’s 2 existing storage arrays, satisfy the performance demands and at the same time significantly reduce energy costs. Moreover, the WHIPTAIL array was up and running within one day.
By replacing the existing 12 physical servers with 50 virtual servers on 4 physical servers residing on a
WHIPTAIL storage array, the City of Delaware achieved significant performance improvements across the target Tier 1 applications, while at the same time achieving a substantial reduction of power consumption and floor space, as follows:
• Virtually eliminated latency across the enterprise to under one millisecond, creating an environment with instantaneous performance of virtualized Tier 1 applications (including SQL databases, Microsoft Exchange 2010, Microsoft terminal servers)
• Reduced access time to a permitting software application1 from 20-100 milliseconds to 1-2 milliseconds, eliminating user complaints about performance and increasing productivity by providing IT staff with previously unrealized time
• Reduced MS Exchange access time from 10 minutes to 30 seconds for a city attorney who had 10K e-mails in
• Reduced Tier 1 application server footprint by 67% (12 servers to 4 servers)
• Realized 80% annual savings in server power costs
• Reduced Tier 1 application power and cooling costs by 90%
• Reduced total cost of ownership for data center rack space from $60,000/year to $600/year