Are ARM Processors Ready for Data Centre Primetime?

ARM processors have been around for over three decades, in the last decade seeing massive popularity thanks to the ubiquity of modern smartphones. From their resource efficient roots, the processor designs have grown increasingly capable of a wide range of use cases. In this piece, Chris Evans looks at some of the companies trying to bring ARM into the datacenter. He saw Liqid demo their composable infrastructure tech at Tech Field Day Extra at Dell Technologies World, and thinks that kind of deployment could make ARM in the enterprise an intriguing proposition.


Liqid’s PCIe Fabric Is the Key to Composable Infrastructure

Liqid showed off their novel approach to Composable Infrastructure at Tech Field Day Extra at Dell Technologies World 2019. In this post, Chris Evans looks at how they use a PCIe Fabric to enable their disaggregated approach to pooling resources across a variety of servers.


BONUS: The Origins of Tech Field Day – the On-Premise IT Roundtable

In this bonus episode of the On-Premise IT Roundtable, we’re joining Stephen Foskett as he talks with some of the original delegates and inspirations for the Tech Field Day event series. They discuss the event that gave Stephen the initial idea, a fortuitous plane ride, how the first Tech Field Day event went, where the idea for the live stream started and more.


Pure Storage Cloud Block Store Goes GA

Pure Storage’s cloud-native solution for implementing independent block storage in the public cloud, Cloud Block Store, just became generally available. In this post, Chris Evans digs into the specifics of its features, how it compares in the market, and what makes it stand out. He got a deep dive session on the new solution during Storage Field Day Exclusive at Pure Accelerate 2019.


Commvault Announces Metallic SaaS Data Protection

Chris Evans attended Tech Field Day Exclusive at Commvault GO 2019, where he got to go beyond the announcements from the event and get technical deep dive sessions. In this post, he breaks down what he saw from Commvault Metallic, their new SaaS-based solution for data protection.


Unpicking the Commvault Acquisition of Hedvig

Commvault and Hedvig were both familiar companies to the Tech Field Day community. So when the former bought the latter, we knew there would be some interesting insights from our delegates. In this post, Chris Evans breaks down how he sees Commvault integrating and augmenting much of what Hedvig offered.


FlashArray//X Gets Optane Acceleration With DirectMemory

Inte’s Optane storage class memory has had a lot of implications across IT. In this post, Chris Evans looks at its use in FlashArray//X, using their just announced DirectMemory cache acceleration solution. While Chris had some concerns about durability with this approach, what he saw at Storage Field Day Exclusive at Pure Accelerate showed that Pure has the pieces in place to deliver an SCM-based array.


Pure Storage FlashArray//C – First Impressions

Chris Evans shared his thoughts on Pure Storage’s new FlashArray//C in this post. He got a deep dive on the new storage solution while attending Storage Field Day Exclusive at Pure Accelerate. This went beyond the speed and feed of the announcement, giving the technical deep dive needed to really help Chris put the product into context and speak to its potential use cases.


VMware Project Pacific – First Impressions

VMware announced their plan to integrate container management into vSphere with Project Pacific at VMworld US 2019. Chris Evans got to hear more details about the thought behind the project during VMware’s Tech Field Day Extra presentations at the event. Be sure to check out his blog post with more thoughts on this ambitious effort.


Cohesity Looks to Exploit Secondary Data Value With MarketPlace

Since emerging as a secondary storage startup, Cohesity has continued to innovate in how to deliver the full value of data to their customers. In this post, Chris Evans looks at the latest implementation of that approach with Cohesity MarketPlace. This firmly moves the company into the data management sphere, with the ability to run AI/ML, analytics or other data-intensive applications on content stored in the Cohesity DataPlatform.


The HCI Definition Obsession

In this post, Chris Evans considers the latest ability of NetApp’s Cloud Volumes services to run on-premises with NetApp HCI. This struck him as storage coming full circle, with a cloud-native approach to storage coming back within the data center. For Chris, this sparked the thought that maybe people have misunderstood NetApp’s HCI strategy from the start. Instead of strictly adhering to a traditional definition of HCI, NetApp built a hybrid cloud solution that provides a consistent experience for customers. In the end, Chris thinks that’s more valuable.


Cloud-Native Data Protection

In this post, Chris Evans looks at cloud-native data protection. He breaks down why it makes sense for an organization, what some of the potential challenges are, and takes time to define what a cloud native solution should actually look like. He also looks the companies offering solutions in the space, including what Druva showed at Cloud Field Day last year, and solutions presented at Storage Field Day by NetApp.


Datrium Delivers Data Mobility With Automatrix

In this piece, Chris Evans looks at how Datrium is taking the data mobility problem with their Automatrix solution, which they talked about during their recent Cloud Field Day presentation. If Automatrix can deliver the same data movement flexibility for containers that are being achieved for virtual machines, he sees it being an all-encompassing solution for data mobility.


Thoughts on Transitioning to Dell EMC Midrange.NEXT

In this post, Chris Evans looks at the history of Dell EMC’s mid-range storage offerings, and how it might position the company’s offering going forward. This includes a look at XtremIO and Unity, which Chris got to see at Storage Field Day a few years ago. Ultimately, whether updating an existing line or building from the ground up, there isn’t an obvious solution for Dell EMC.


The Hidden Gem That Is StorPool

Chris Evans knows his storage. After seeing StorPool present at Storage Field Day, he considers them a hidden gem. They offer a high-performance scale-out block storage solution running on commodity hardware and Linux. Using their self-developed on disk-formats, inter-node protocols and cluster management, StorPool was able to offer the same performance as Microsoft’s HCI specification, without the need for a costly NVDIMM cache or RDMA. Chris thinks they have a very interesting solution for the right customer.


Rubrik, Cohesity and the Battle for NoSQL Backup

As always, Chris Evans has a keen insight into the backup market. He recently updated a post about Rubrik’s acquisition of Datos IO to add in some additional perspective on the NoSQL backup market. With Cohesity acquiring Imanis Data, Chris sees this as both companies trying to bridge the gap between traditional backup and data management, something always easier said than done.


You’re Wrong About Data Protection Policy

This episode of the On-Premise IT Roundtable was recorded at Tech Field Day Extra at Dell Technologies and looks at data protection policies. The group discusses why you’re probably doing it wrong. Essentially business and compliance needs are not top of mind when these policies are established. They further discuss how vendor defaults and application owners add to the confusion.


Can the WekaIO Matrix File System Be Faster Than DAS?

Direct Attached Storage (DAS), offers a lot of advantages in terms of speed and latency, but comes with a suite of problems. If nothing else, it forces applications to deal with data integrity and resiliency issues instead of having it as part of SAN. Chris Evans looks at how WekaIO addresses the shortcomings of DAS while keeping the high-performance and low latency. At Storage Field Day last month, they showed how their scale-out parallel file system can provide exceptional performance that’s only limited by the bandwidth of the network card. By rewritting at the file system layer and lower, WekaIO is able to offer distributed storage built to take full advantage of modern storage media.


#91 – Storage Field Day 18 in Review

In this episode of the Storage Unpacked podcast, Chris Evans and Martin Glassborow discuss what happened at Storage Field Day last month. The companies pretty cleanly divided between scale-out primary storage and data protection solutions. They touch on all the presenters, and where listeners can learn more about the event. Be sure to give it a listen as a preview before watching all of the event presentation video on our site.


VAST Data Launches With New Scale-Out Storage Platform

As one of the delegates at Storage Field Day, Chris Evans got to see VAST Data come out of stealth at the event. The company offers a new storage platform built on a disaggregated shared-everything architecture. Using a combination of QLC NAND flash and storage-class memory in an enclosure, linked across an NVMe fabric, any storage controller can talk to any NVMe device on the fabric. The result is a scalable architecture with no inherent pinch points, that could scale to thousands of storage nodes and tens of thousands of controllers.