Astute Networks

ViSX VM Storage Appliances

 • Accelerate cloud computing, server and desktop virtualization
• Increase database, application, and desktop performance by up to 10X
• Reap the performance benefits of Networked Flash technology




IT Challenges

IT Managers are under constant pressure to ensure that end-users are satisfied with the performance of their applications and the virtual and physical infrastructure that underpins them. In addition, they are required to support the new business initiatives, such as virtualizing Tier 1 business-critical applications and cloud computing, while simultaneously managing tight budgets.

These challenges will require that IT Managers adopt new and innovative solutions to solve their virtual infrastructure performance problems. With users demanding consistent, predictable performance and executive management requiring lower costs per user, IT managers will need to evaluate new technologies, such as flash-based storage to meet these challenges.

ViSX Flash-based VM Storage Appliance – At A Glance

Astute Networks breaks the virtual machine performance barriers by resolving critical I/O bottlenecks with the ViSX family of high-performance flash-based VM Storage Appliances.

Based on its patented 10GbE DataPump™ Engine and Networked Flash™ architecture, ViSX gives virtualization managers a simple to deploy virtual machine optimized storage appliance that boosts Tier 1 application and VDI performance by up to 10X.

As a result, companies improve user productivity, customer satisfaction and revenue generation while eliminating the over-provisioning of storage, servers, and network resources. The Astute ViSX VM storage appliance non-disruptively delivers unprecedented performance in a cost effective, simple to deploy solution that complements existing IT infrastructure. Dramatic application performance gains for your most demanding databases and VDI environments can now be experienced in a matter of minutes.

Astute ViSX Architectural Advantage

ViSX Flash-based Virtual Machine (VM) Storage Appliances are specifically architected to deliver unprecedented random IOPS performance & unprecedented IOPS per $, helping you unleash the full potential of your virtualized datacenter whether you are deploying a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure or virtualizing your business critical applications.

The Networked Flash™ architecture of the ViSX appliance combines ultra reliable eMLC Flash solid state storage modules with a custom high-performance, 1/10GbE DataPump Engine™ network protocol processor that dramatically accelerates network (TCP) & storage (iSCSI) protocol processing.

Together, they eliminate all of the critical I/O bottlenecks that can affect your virtualized applications. ViSX appliances also come with integrated in-line de-duplication to significantly increase the overall effective capacity. Unlike other traditional and flash storage systems, the ViSX de-duplication technology has no impact on performance.

Unprecedented Performance

Today, nearly all flash-based and hybrid storage systems on the market are designed using off the shelf X86’s CPU’s as their storage services and network processor, layering custom built software on top of the system to deliver the feature and functionality of a storage system. In systems architected in this manner, all TCP, iSCSI & sometimes RAID processing is done by the CPU, which dramatically limits performance.

The ViSX architecture is purpose-built for virtualized environments & the applications that have high performance requirements. In contrast to conventional architectures, the ViSX Networked Flash architecture combines Solid State Drives (SSD’s) with our DataPump Engine, a patented ASIC chip that enables offloading & acceleration of the TCP, iSCSI and RAID processing, thus putting minimal demands on the CPU. This unique design eliminates storage and network I/O bottlenecks and maximizes the IOPS performance that Flash can sustain. Because of its unique design, VISX can deliver 5 to 10X the performance over conventional flash and hybrid storage systems when deployed in Ethernet networks.

Astute’s ViSX G4 appliances also support an advanced algorithm for primary deduplication that offers very high rates of compression to dramatically increase storage capacity and, unlike nearly all other storage solutions, either flash, hybrid, or disk-based, has zero impact on performance. ViSX appliances support all common RAID levels, with flash optimized firmware enhancements, as well as on chip error detection and correction. Unique to ViSX is the approach used in overprovisioning each of its hot swappable Flash modules to both increase overall reliability and improve write performance. All ViSX appliances are managed by a VMware vCenter plug-in for vSphere environments, or by its FlashWRX™ GUI for other hypervisor platforms such as Hyper-V, Xen, and RHEV.

A Scalable Architecture for Performance and Capacity

The ViSX high performance VM storage appliances are designed to accommodate highly random I/O workloads as well as provide the ability for a company to scale out and up with ease as performance and capacity requirements increase by simply adding additional SSD modules to the chassis or by adding additional 2 EIA Rack unit G4 appliances. Each ViSX can scale to 140,000 sustained random IOPS and can be clustered together to scale in excess of 1 million sustained random IOPS configured either as one large datastore or multiple independent datastores.


ViSX VM Storage Appliances are the only high performance storage appliance in the market that have been designed to deliver 4 levels of data protection;

  • On chip Flash ECC- Each Flash chip has its own error detection and correction capabilities
  • eMLC- Enterprise-grade multi-level cell flash devices combine extra reliability with high performance to extend the life of flash-based modules to 10 years or more.
  • SSD RAID Levels – ViSX supports multiple RAID levels including 0,1,10, 5 & 6
  • SSD Over- Provisioning- Each ViSX SSD has been over-provisioned to support chip error correction and detection. This one of a kind design increases both overall reliability and improves write performance by reserving a quantity of pre-erased blocks that accelerate garbage collection.

Ease of Deployment

ViSX was purpose-built to be a high performance storage appliance for virtualized environments and the business critical applications that run upon them. It is designed to be a complementary solutiion to your existing SAN or NAS environment, not a rip and replace storage solution. Virtual machines see ViSX as an iSCSI target on the network, which is easily provisioned and managed via the VMware vCenter Plug-in or through the ViSX FlashWRX™ GUI.

last modified: September 24th, 2012 by Bharzog

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