Dell Technologies Simplifies Storage Automation With PowerTools

As a cloud-like, self-service experience for infrastructure consumers like software developers becomes expected, enterprise storage is under increased pressure to evolve. Slow, error-prone, manual storage tasks do not keep pace with the demands of these consumers or come close to meeting ease-of-use expectations that have been set by public cloud providers. In response to these realities, Dell has been wise to not only embrace automation across their storage portfolio but choose to integrate with the toolsets their customers actually use as presented by Dell EMC at Storage Field Day.


Managing Data Migration Challenges

Data migration is a thankless task that needs to be performed periodically during hardware refreshes, and of course, regularly to keep expensive storage systems tidy. Fortunately, for traditional block-based workloads, the introduction of technologies like server virtualization have taken most of the pain out of the process. However, migrating unstructured data still seems to represent a challenge. As a result, we see solutions from companies like Hammerspace and Komprise looking to both ease the process and take advantage of hybrid multi-cloud configurations. In this piece Chris Evans looks at what both companies presented at Storage Field Day to held meet this challenge.


Infrascale Provides Cloud-Based IT Resilience to the Masses

During Infrascale’s presentation at Storage Field Day 19, they discussed how the rise in capability and popularity of cloud computing has had the fortunate outcome of providing new tools and approaches to solving age-old problems. One such persistent pain point is that of disaster recovery. Infrascale has responded to this by providing a feature-rich platform for protecting against partial and full site failures using a combination of local and cloud resources.


Voices in Data Storage – Episode 39: A Conversation With Russell Reeder

On this episode of Voices in Data Storage, the inimitable Enrico Signoretti spoke with Russell Reeder. They discuss Infrascale’s presentation at Storage Field Day, and the state of the storage industry at large. Be sure to subscribe to his feed, and check out the full video presentation from Storage Field Day!


Managing Massive Media

Chris Evans looks at the state of throughput for mechanical hard drives in this post. While spinning disks may be seen as a legacy technology by some, they are still used widely across many industries and applications. The problem comes when looking at random access to these, and the physical limitations imposed by how they operate. In this regard, random read performance has barely nudged for hard drives in over a decade. Western Digital discussed how they were trying to address these issues at Storage Field Day, and how they are using things like zoned hard drives to also help alleviate future concerns with increasingly dense SSDs. Because many of these approaches require a degree of application support, Chris think both system manufacturers and software-defined storage developers will have to take these approaches into consideration.


Voices in Data Storage – Episode 36: A Conversation With Anand Babu Periasamy and Jonathon Symonds on MinIO

On a recent Voices in Data Storage podcast episode, host Enrico Signoretti interviewed the CEO and co-founder of MinIO, AB Periasamy, as well as their CMO Jonathan Symonds. Enrico recently got to hear in-depth on their technology and solutions at Storage Field Day. In the interview they discuss how MinIO’s high-performance, software-defined, distributed object storage server and client fit into the overall storage market, as well as AB Periasamy’s history with open-source software.


Dell EMC Isilon Is an Emmy Winner!

It’s not uncommon for presenters at Field Day events to win awards within the industry. We’re proud that our events feature the most influential and innovative companies in IT, so it’s not surprising to see that recognized. But it’s not often that we see one win an Emmy! That’s what Dell EMC’s Isilon did, winning a Technology & Engineering Emmy Award for early development of hierarchical storage management systems. Chin-Fah Heoh has been familiar with Isilon’s OneFS for a long time. He has respect for the platform for offering a real true clustered, scale-out file system that has proved it’s value over its life. He details the history of the platform, and how the company showed at Storage Field Day how they’re supporting running OneFS in the cloud.


NetApp Fabric Orchestrator and Hybrid Cloud

NetApp discussing its Data Fabric strategy for a few years now. In this post, Chris Evans looks at one of the key components of it, Fabric Orchestrator. He sees it as a natural evolution from their Cloud Orchestrator, and reflects a lot of the IP the company acquired with Greenqloud and StackPointCloud. Fabric Orchestrator introduces workflow to manage how to apply policies to data sets, independent of how they are attached to applications. This allows for data to be tiered to either less expensive on-premises storage or into the cloud. Chris thinks NetApp is developing an approach to data mobility in a way that aligns with their existing market, evolving their products as their business needs change.


StorageGRID Gets Gritty

Object storage has a reputation for being “cheap and deep”, offering scalable, affordable storage without much in the way of performance considerations. At Storage Field Day, Chin-Fah Heoh liked that NetApp challenged that narrative with their StorageGRID Webscale (SGWS) solution. With all-flash solutions available, SGWS is not a new platform, but offers new performance capabilities with a very mature software backend. While Chin-Fah wonder what might have been if NetApp had pivoted the platform to performance a little earlier, he sees the company properly positioning the solution for the general purpose object storage market.


Voices in Data Storage – Episode 35: A Conversation With Krishna Subramanian of Komprise

On a recent episode of Voices in Data Storage, Enrico Signoretti spoke with Komprise’s co-founder and COO Krishna Subramanian. Krishna has a extensive history working in IT, from being VP Marketing for Cloud Platforms at Citrix, to leading cloud computing strategy at Sun, and co-founding Kovair. Enrico was recently a delegate at Storage Field Day, where Komprise made a return as a presenter. Be sure to check out their full video to get up to date on their latest solutions.


SFD19: DellEMC Does DevOps

Dell EMC was one of the presenters at a busy Storage Field Day event. In this post, Becky Elliott writes up her thoughts on the presentation, one that was dominated by Dell EMC’s approach to DevOps. The company hit on the increasing imperative of automation in the enterprise and how IT silos are breaking down. Dell EMC also discussed their Ansible Playbooks for platforms like Isilon and PowerMax to help unify configuration, deployment, and orchestration. For Becky, this kind of practical focus of the presentation proved to be the most valuable.


Can Infrascale Compete in the Enterprise Backup Market?

Chris Evans is no stranger to the storage industry, so it’s always exciting to talk to a new company. At Storage Field Day, he got to hear from Infrascale, a company that has over two decades of experience in endpoint and enterprise data protection, but one that Chris hadn’t spoken to before. They offer solutions for cloud backup, SaaS protection, and disaster recovery, the last of which was demoed at the event. Chris was impressed that without a lot of flashing funding rounds, Infrascale offers a remarkable mature feature set. But with the shift in data protection models from applications to data, companies like Infrascale need to keep evolving to stay relevant with the times.


Paradigm Shift of Dev to Storage Ops

Chin-Fah Heoh considers how the advent of containers and Kubernetes have moved storage and DevOps closer than ever. In his mind, the Container Storage Interface commonly used in the industry cannot scale nearly as well in the cloud like object storage, which is clearly where container storage needs to go in the future. At Storage Field Day, he heard how MinIO is looking to bridge the divide between Dev and Ops with their Kubernetes friendly high performance object storage platform. He then looks at how VMware is adapting to the times with Project Pacific, which includes Cloud Native Storage and has chosen MinIO as the resident object storage provider. It’s a key integration for a high performance scalable storage solution.


Storage Field Day 19 MinIO

One of the companies that really stood out to Joey D’Antoni at Storage Field Day was MinIO. If you’re still getting up to speed on the modern world of object storage, Joey does a good job of quickly summarizing what differentiates it from traditional block storage. Object storage is all about solving the problems of scale. For Joey, MinIO’s open source storage management software excels in that regard, offering extremely fast performance with full S3 compatibility. He lays out some potential use cases, and really wants to see where MinIO takes the solution from here.


DellEMC Project Nautilus Re-Imagine Storage for Streams

Chin-Fah Heoh got to hear about Dell EMC’s Project Nautilus at Storage Field Day. This is their composite software platform for both streaming real-time data and historical batch data. A key component of this is Pravega, an open source storage framework for streaming data. This allows for storage streams to be treated as a new class of storage primitives, which can use protocols like Fibre Channel, SMB or NFS. Data streams can then further be fed into analytics frameworks like Flink and Apache Spark. With the increasing importance of edge computing, Chin-Fah sees Project Nautilus as an very timely framework.


Project Nautilus Emerged as Dell’s Streaming Data Platform

At Storage Field Day, Gina Rosenthal got to hear from Dell EMC’s Project Nautilus, which uses open source tools to offer real time and historical analytics and storage. This essentially serves as a framework for those tool, with ingested data streams being tiered to long term storage, connected to analytics tools like Spark and Flink, then joined by Project Nautilus’ engine to provide for scale. This is all part of Dell EMC’s larger efforts to help blunt the impact of unstructured data growth. The open source streaming data platform with Project Nautilus is definitely a key addition to that toolkit.


Taming Unstructured Data With Dell EMC Isilon

Dell EMC presented an update on Isilon at Storage Field Day. Gina Rosenthal was a delegate at the event and wrote up what they showed about how Isilon is helping organizations solve the growing problem of unstructured data. It’s hard to follow any IT analysis these days without hearing a terrifying statement about how the rapid growth of unstructured data is going to eat through existing storage options. This Emmy award winning scale-out NAS has a long history and runs Dell’s OneFS. One interesting thing they showed during Storage Field Day was the ability to run OneFS with its full policy support in the cloud. This allows organizations to put data close to their cloud compute using the tools their familiar with, something critical with Isilon’s long time customers. Gina thought this kind of extension shows how traditional storage teams can augment cloud offerings.


WekaIO and a Fresh Approach

WekaIO is no stranger to presenting at Storage Field Day, and Dan Frith was definitely interested in hearing their latest updates at our most recent event. They presented their storage solution as something that bridges the compromises between performance and sharable, claiming to support exabyte scale across a single namespace, with networked storage performance faster than local storage. They offer this with a simple management interface and an expected enterprise feature set, including end-to-end data encryption. While its easy to get caught up in hype from a single presentation, Dan has heard from WeakIO several times now, and remains impressed with the technology and implementation.


Storage Field Day 19 – Wrap-Up and Link-O-Rama

It’s always a pleasure to have Dan Frith as a delegate at a Storage Field Day event. Making the trip over from Australia isn’t easy, but lending his keen intellect and unique perspective to the proceedings is always appreciated. In this post, Dan shares links to other posts from the event from his fellow delegates. It’s this sense of greater community that makes Field Day events stand out.


Dell EMC PowerOne – Not V(x)block 2.0

Dell EMC is a familiar face at Storage Field Day. As an iconic company in the storage industry, it’s always good to get an update on their latest and greatest. Dan Frith got to hear from them with an update on PowerOne, its converged “all-in-one autonomous infrastructure.” Converged infrastructure isn’t the newest idea on the block, but Dan thinks that PowerOne offers a substantially different experience than solutions of the past. In this post, Dan outlines a lot of the important automation features that help it stand out, which takes away the need to constantly consult documentation and other support documents to get the system up and running. While a lot of enterprise interest is taken by HCI solutions, Dan makes the case that Dell EMC is truly innovating with converged infrastructure to meet real enterprise need and keep it relevant.