Storage Networking

Storage Networking focuses upon virtualizing the storage and the SAN while collapsing and simplifying the management and performance of storage. This includes the role of storage virtualization in the Software Defined Data Center, and the comparison of pooled local storage options with traditional network attached storage (NAS) and fiber channel attached storage. Covered vendors include VMware, EMC, IBM, Dell, HP, Cisco, Tintri, and Nutanix.

News: VMware VSAN GA Release Ships with vSphere 5.5 Update 1

VMware100x30After months of beta testing boasting 12,000+ beta testers, VMware has finally thrown its hat into the hyperconverged virtualization space with the GA release of VMware vSphere 5.5 Update 1. Among numerous bug fixes to vSphere, this release contains the GA code for VMware VSAN. VSAN is a shared-nothing clustered storage technology embedded in the vSphere hypervisor, ESXi, that uses collections of local, direct-attached host storage to provide reliable and high-performing storage to a vSphere cluster. It relies on both traditional rotating disk media and modern flash and solid-state drive (SSD) storage, forming clusters of up to 32 ESXi hosts over 1 Gbps or, preferably, 10 Gbps network connections.

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VDI, a Beauty & a Beast: A Nutanix Story

DesktopVirtualizationRecently, I wrote an article about what Citrix has done around virtualizing GPUs and GPU sharing, based on a podcast with Derek Thorslund, director of product management for HDX at Citrix. When the story hit the social media sphere, I got clobbered with hits about Nutanix and its partnership with Citrix and NVIDIA, along with a handful of requests to lead a podcast and write about its involvement with the GRID vGPU tech in its virtual desktop infrastructure  (VDI) business. So, just for the folks who reached out, here is my response.  Continue reading VDI, a Beauty & a Beast: A Nutanix Story

Dell Fluid Cache for SAN

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Back in mid-2011, Dell acquired RNA Networks, a small startup out of Portland, Oregon. At the time Dell purchased it, RNA had a product, MVX, that employed three different ways to pool memory across multiple servers in order to accelerate workloads. One was a way to pool memory as a storage cache in order to speed disk accesses using system RAM. In the spring of 2013, we saw some of these features emerge again as Dell’s Fluid Cache for DAS (direct-attach storage) morphed to use the incredible speed of PCIe-based SSDs instead of RAM. Now, in late 2013 at Dell World, we finally get what many of us have been waiting for: the announcement of the expected availability of Dell Fluid Cache for SAN.

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Replacing Franken-Monitors and Frameworks with the Splunk Ecosystem

Franken-MonitorsmallIn Beware of the Franken-Monitor, we explained how many enterprises ended up with Franken-Monitors and the dangers associated with assuming that the present state of management tools can make the transition into the software-defined data center (SDDC) and the cloud. In Getting Rid of Your Franken-Monitor, we explained how to use green-field islands to put in place new ecosystem-based management stacks with the intent of eventually retiring your legacy management stacks. In this post, we detail how one could deploy one example of such an ecosystem of tools based upon Splunk and the vendors that comprise its ecosystem. Continue reading Replacing Franken-Monitors and Frameworks with the Splunk Ecosystem