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The impact of flash technologies

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Technology advances like flash arrays are key weapons in the CIO’s arsenal, and important in helping to deliver cost-effective, flexible and easy-to-use IT systems.

Accelerated flash builds on the HDS foundation, says HDS’ Werner Coetzee. Companies today are facing challenges of accelerating insight, improving decision-making and freeing up resources.

“What about if we could measure the improvement on an entire business process by changing the entire underlying architecture?” he asks. “The problem is that the velocity and volume that is hitting us is so huge that unless we change now, we won’t be able to.”

HDS has introduced Hitachi Accelerated Flash – with four times sustained performance increase and 46% lower cost over MCL SSD.

“This is the first enterprise flash in the market,” Coetzee says.

HDS has done this by rethinking the technology, allowing it to put 1,6Tb on a single disk. The secret is in the embedded controller, he adds. Implanted on the drive itself, it does many of the management functions right on the disk.

The effect is 94% inline compression, massive throughput and enhanced error correction while looking after longevity of the cells. The product fits into the VSP, giving 100Tb of usable flash in a 13u space.

“What does this mean, with the density,” Coetzee asks. The answer lies in how much space, management and power consumption would be required with a hard drive system offering similar capacity.

With the increased capacity, Coetzee urges companies to move workloads on to the array to maximise usage and increase utilisation. This gives customers better performance via a blend of Hitachi technologies.

Importantly, HDS’ VSP all-flash beat out all competitors in benchmark tests, with 33% better scalability, 93% lower response times, 73% better price performance – and much less actual physical drives.

“We are able to drive down that performance costs across the board,” Coetzee says.

HDS has also introduced the HUS VM All Flash storage system, offering 1-million IOPS later on this – currently running at 500 000 IOPS. It will offer up to 154Tb flash storage, driving unified and virtualised flash technology into the market.

“Looking at flash and what it does in our business environment, we are able to much more flexible, address multiple workloads – overall four times better performance at half the price.”