Violin's Concerto 7000: Stepping to an All Silicon Data Center?

By - Source: Toms IT Pro

Violin Memory has announced its next all-flash array, the Concerto 7000, and with it, hopes to solve several problems related to the implementation of flash storage in the enterprise.

Conversations about flash technology in the enterprise data center are changing. There seems to no longer be a question as to whether or not a large operation can afford to incorporate flash in some way. Read: Building a Business Case for Flash Storage 

In an IDC vendor profile of Violin Memory, Eric Burgener discusses some of the challenges facing large-scale flash storage integration within the data center. "Enterprises that think that flash is still too expensive to deploy in their data centers are mistaken. Flash-optimized storage architectures are delivering a more aggressive price per IOPS, IOPS per terabyte, and price per transaction than ever," according to Burgener.

Burgener believes the current method of evaluating flash technology (dollar per GB) will soon be a thing of the past. IT departments will soon be evaluating flash options by dollar per IOPS, IOPS per TB and total cost of ownership instead.

However, according to IDC, there are several aspects of flash technology offerings that still limit widespread adoption among enterprises, mainly flexibility of use, reliability and storage management functionality.

Violin Concerto 7000Violin Concerto 7000The Concerto 7000 All Flash Array has a 18RU form factor and can scale up to 240 TB raw capacity. All drives are hot-swappable, there is capacity pooling to avoid hot spots and a single namespace can be assigned for multiple shelves.

In terms of performance, the Concerto 7000 can provide 500K IOPS at less than 0.5ms while handling a mixed workload. This, combined with the large 240 TB capacity, breaks the all flash array out of any specialized niche and is key to a flash array being a flexible asset in the data center. Take into account inline compression and deduplication and you have a powerful data center system.

Flexibility and performance won't mean much without reliability and security. The Concerto 7000 supports asynchronous and synchronous replication reaching out to distances of 100 kilometers, and includes automated disaster recovery management.

"Automation is becoming a key mantra among CIOs as a way to reliably increase administrative span of control as staffing levels shrink. For an array to be considered a viable platform for dense workload consolidation, it must fit in with this strategy and be easy to integrate into preexisting datacenter workflows," according to IDC's vendor profile.

The Concerto 7000 can be managed through the company's Violin Symphony, with data protection and replication able to be managed on a LUN-by-LUN basis. Violin Memory is also offer the Concerto 7000 upgrade kit, which can be used to upgrade an existing Concerto 6000 array to the new system.

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