Software-defined is the new horizon for everything in the data center, enabling IT professionals to implement architectures that deliver a more agile infrastructure. These new infrastructures can rapidly respond to unpredictable requirements, as well as create a more operationally efficient data center where standard hardware components and automation become fundamental to achieving the goals.
Yes, this sounds like a perfect argument for the public cloud, but as we have learned from supporting the largest enterprises in the world, the public cloud is not for everyone– or at least– not for everything. Hence, there is a need for a hybrid-cloud architectural model which allows customers to have the flexibility to decide when and what is most suited to be in each location.
When it comes to data, we are undergoing a major architectural transition. Scale-out software-defined storage (SDS), in this specific case, block storage, has continued to mature and can demonstrate the ability to deliver the performance and reliability of traditional enterprise class arrays. Enterprises have taken notice, resulting in a significant shift away from such traditional products in favor of this more modern alternative.
Datera’s customer requirements are fairly consistent. At a highest level, customers want the simplicity and elasticity of the public cloud on premise! And they want that experience at a lower cost, with higher performance, better security, more buying power, etc.
Today’s business environment is extremely dynamic and new applications are constantly emerging. Velocity has become paramount to enable better competitiveness and economic advantage.
In this new paradigm, especially for customers that operate at scale, planning scenarios using traditional enterprise products are no longer feasible. Customers need the elasticity to easily scale both capacity and performance over time to react to any new situation. And of course, businesses want to be able to automate their data infrastructure while eliminating burdensome data migration efforts due to proprietary hardware obsolescence. SDS removes hardware vendor ‘lock-ins’ by accommodating a wide range of standard server products.
The value proposition is pretty straightforward, and we will see more vendors shifting their offerings to provide these capabilities.
Datera’s unique “dynamic architecture” is a critical advantage over existing SDS offerings. Datera enables the ability to create an infrastructure that is inherently heterogeneous by design. In this model, customers can architect a data infrastructure that becomes timeless; capable of seamlessly and concurrently managing heterogeneity across server manufacturers, generations, and media types / sizes / classes.
The value of a dynamic data infrastructure that is autonomously managed is reflected in two scenarios:
- Principle one: Not all data has the same value, and the value of that data changes over time. With this in mind, to maximize economics, it becomes valuable for customers to be able to architect the infrastructure with different classes of media as defined through simple policy settings. When a situation changes and data would be better suited for a different class of media, a simple policy change will move data “live” to a new destination. In essence, the applications are allowed to ‘float above the hardware’ and are not tied nor constrained by it. Outcome: Customers can broadly consolidate their data infrastructure, ideally optimizing hardware investments across their most valuable data sets at any point in time.
- Principle two: The only constant is change. Requirements and technologies ALWAYS change. New requirements may require new innovations in media technology. In the Datera paradigm, if a customer begins with a cluster of servers using SATA technology but then determines new requirements would benefit from using either NVMe or Intel Optane™ storage classes, they can easily adjust on the fly. The customer can order a couple of servers with new media, and Datera will literally take only minutes to adopt the new technology. With just a few clicks, the new servers can be joined to the existing cluster. Then, with a simple policy change, the system will automatically move the workload “live” to the new server! Yes, magic! Outcome: Customers have the broadest flexibility to adopt any new server or media technology within a running cluster to deliver best in class business agility and economics.
Heiko Wuest, our Sr. System Engineer in Germany will show a small cluster, deployed in the HPE lab in Geneva, architected with three classes of media technologies, consisting of hybrid/SATA and NVMe nodes.
Now to demonstrate all of this, please click the image:
In the video, you can see how easy Datera makes it for customers to allocate their workloads to the media technology that makes the most sense for them via policies, and how easily they can change the allocation of data “live” with policy changes.
SDS architectures will continue to gain momentum because they enable customers to become more agile and efficient while operating at scale. At Datera, we believe that customers need more than just the ability to scale-out on commodity hardware. Customers need to be able to simply, dynamically, non disruptively move data in order to compete in an ever-changing, ever cost-conscious business environment. Datera’s autonomous platform lets businesses drive on-demand decisions based on their data’s needs and not on rigid infrastructure constraints. You can achieve business and operational agility without sacrificing economics.
For more information, we recommend reading our white papers:
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