Violin punts flash-mem array with '10X performance advantage'

Cheaper per gigabyte too


Violin Memory is introducing a flash memory array product with integrated flash RAID and a "sustainable ten-fold performance advantage over leading competitors".

The 3200 Flash Memory Array has hot-swappable flash drives and is claimed to have a much lower cost per useable gigabyte as well as a performance advantage. It is a modular array in a 3U enclosure that scales from 500GB to 10TB of single-level cell (SLC) NAND flash. There is hardware-based flash RAID across the hot-swappable memory modules. Data latency is said to be less than 100 microseconds, with Violin saying this is spike-free latency.

It claims there are multi-millisecond spikes seen in today’s solid state drive (SSD) and PCIe card solutions, presumably such as ones from Fusion-io.

The 3200 delivers over 220,000 sustained random Write IOPS (4K block), claimed to be more than twenty times greater than Fibre Channel or PCIe based SSDs - seemingly an allusion to STEC's ZeusIOPS SSDs and Fusion-io's ioDrive PCIe SSD.

The working life of a 3200 is put at ten years plus. It has "wear levelling across the whole array and is guaranteed to sustain continuous writes over its projected 10-year life, double the industry standard. Unlike SSDs, all workloads are supported without wear being a concern to the end-user."

The 3200 is the first in the Violin 3000 series of Memory Arrays that scale to more than 140TB in a rack with a performance over two million IOPS. Violin reckons it has the industry’s best price/performance attributes, stating that the total cost of enterprise-grade Flash storage is lowered by more than 50 per cent.

Violin says the 3200 can be used as primary storage for any application on any file and operating system. Host access can be provided via PCIe, 4or 8Gbit/s Fibre Channel or 10Gbit/s Ethernet. Example applications are database, data warehousing and supporting VMware. Violin makes the point that the 3200 has RAID protection unlike Oracle's Exadata product.

Anthony Juliano, the Chief Technology Officer for Landmark Ventures, with whom Violin has a strategic partnership, said: "The recent proliferation of NAND flash in consumer devices like iPods and the recent strategic partnership with Toshiba has enabled Violin to offer the cost-metrics needed to lead the solid state revolution the storage market.

"Violin is the first company to aggregate flash as an enterprise storage solution, beyond just a cache strategy – and it’s been proven by their incredible economics and performance metrics that blow away all HDD/SSD systems to date."

Fine words, but he would talk it up; Landmark is an investment banking house as well as an advisory company.

Recently The Reg has covered news about all-flash arrays from Nimbus Data, WhipTail and UNAS. Now Violin is joining the all-flash array party. The challenge to HDD array vendors who currently see flash as just a tier-0 data container and not a container for all primary data is getting stronger and stronger on an almost daily basis.

Jim Handy, an SSD analyst at Objective Analysis, said:  "Today flash is being added incrementally through SSDs. Violin's strategy to provide a flash Memory Array to compete with high-speed HDD arrays at an equivalent price and capacity point is a novel approach that can radically change the economics of the data center."

Pricing for the 3200 starts from $20/GB, making a 10TB 3200 $200,000. This provides, Violin says, "cost parity with performance HDD (hard disk drive) storage arrays". ®


Other stories you might like

  • Zuckerberg sued for alleged role in Cambridge Analytica data-slurp scandal
    I can prove CEO was 'personally involved in Facebook’s failure to protect privacy', DC AG insists

    Cambridge Analytica is back to haunt Mark Zuckerberg: Washington DC's Attorney General filed a lawsuit today directly accusing the Meta CEO of personal involvement in the abuses that led to the data-slurping scandal. 

    DC AG Karl Racine filed [PDF] the civil suit on Monday morning, saying his office's investigations found ample evidence Zuck could be held responsible for that 2018 cluster-fsck. For those who've put it out of mind, UK-based Cambridge Analytica harvested tens of millions of people's info via a third-party Facebook app, revealing a – at best – somewhat slipshod handling of netizens' privacy by the US tech giant.

    That year, Racine sued Facebook, claiming the social network was well aware of the analytics firm's antics yet failed to do anything meaningful until the data harvesting was covered by mainstream media. Facebook repeatedly stymied document production attempts, Racine claimed, and the paperwork it eventually handed over painted a trail he said led directly to Zuck. 

    Continue reading
  • Florida's content-moderation law kept on ice, likely unconstitutional, court says
    So cool you're into free speech because that includes taking down misinformation

    While the US Supreme Court considers an emergency petition to reinstate a preliminary injunction against Texas' social media law HB 20, the US Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday partially upheld a similar injunction against Florida's social media law, SB 7072.

    Both Florida and Texas last year passed laws that impose content moderation restrictions, editorial disclosure obligations, and user-data access requirements on large online social networks. The Republican governors of both states justified the laws by claiming that social media sites have been trying to censor conservative voices, an allegation that has not been supported by evidence.

    Multiple studies addressing this issue say right-wing folk aren't being censored. They have found that social media sites try to take down or block misinformation, which researchers say is more common from right-leaning sources.

    Continue reading
  • US-APAC trade deal leaves out Taiwan, military defense not ruled out
    All fun and games until the chip factories are in the crosshairs

    US President Joe Biden has heralded an Indo-Pacific trade deal signed by several nations that do not include Taiwan. At the same time, Biden warned China that America would help defend Taiwan from attack; it is home to a critical slice of the global chip industry, after all. 

    The agreement, known as the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF), is still in its infancy, with today's announcement enabling the United States and the other 12 participating countries to begin negotiating "rules of the road that ensure [US businesses] can compete in the Indo-Pacific," the White House said. 

    Along with America, other IPEF signatories are Australia, Brunei, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Combined, the White House said, the 13 countries participating in the IPEF make up 40 percent of the global economy. 

    Continue reading
  • 381,000-plus Kubernetes API servers 'exposed to internet'
    Firewall isn't a made-up word from the Hackers movie, people

    A large number of servers running the Kubernetes API have been left exposed to the internet, which is not great: they're potentially vulnerable to abuse.

    Nonprofit security organization The Shadowserver Foundation recently scanned 454,729 systems hosting the popular open-source platform for managing and orchestrating containers, finding that more than 381,645 – or about 84 percent – are accessible via the internet to varying degrees thus providing a cracked door into a corporate network.

    "While this does not mean that these instances are fully open or vulnerable to an attack, it is likely that this level of access was not intended and these instances are an unnecessarily exposed attack surface," Shadowserver's team stressed in a write-up. "They also allow for information leakage on version and build."

    Continue reading
  • A peek into Gigabyte's GPU Arm for AI, HPC shops
    High-performance platform choices are going beyond the ubiquitous x86 standard

    Arm-based servers continue to gain momentum with Gigabyte Technology introducing a system based on Ampere's Altra processors paired with Nvidia A100 GPUs, aimed at demanding workloads such as AI training and high-performance compute (HPC) applications.

    The G492-PD0 runs either an Ampere Altra or Altra Max processor, the latter delivering 128 64-bit cores that are compatible with the Armv8.2 architecture.

    It supports 16 DDR4 DIMM slots, which would be enough space for up to 4TB of memory if all slots were filled with 256GB memory modules. The chassis also has space for no fewer than eight Nvidia A100 GPUs, which would make for a costly but very powerful system for those workloads that benefit from GPU acceleration.

    Continue reading
  • GitLab version 15 goes big on visibility and observability
    GitOps fans can take a spin on the free tier for pull-based deployment

    One-stop DevOps shop GitLab has announced version 15 of its platform, hot on the heels of pull-based GitOps turning up on the platform's free tier.

    Version 15.0 marks the arrival of GitLab's next major iteration and attention this time around has turned to visibility and observability – hardly surprising considering the acquisition of OpsTrace as 2021 drew to a close, as well as workflow automation, security and compliance.

    GitLab puts out monthly releases –  hitting 15.1 on June 22 –  and we spoke to the company's senior director of Product, Kenny Johnston, at the recent Kubecon EU event, about what will be added to version 15 as time goes by. During a chat with the company's senior director of Product, Kenny Johnston, at the recent Kubecon EU event, The Register was told that this was more where dollars were being invested into the product.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022