Greetings. Since accepting the role of CEO many folks have asked why I decided to join the Violin Systems team. Over my long career, I have held a wide variety of roles within the storage and enterprise software industries (it feels as though I’ve been in the storage industry for eons!). When choosing any new role, opportunity or company I look for one important common denominator. It’s not a particular job function or size of the organization; I must have a passion for and belief in the company’s mission.
There is tremendous excitement about the innovation we're seeing in our customer base for enterprise flash storage.
Like all storage, Flash must be formatted before it’s usable. The format of flash is built around maintaining consistent performance and resiliency. When an all-flash array fills up, it will reuse space to write new data. Erase operations happen in big blocks (megabytes) of space, while writes happen in small chunks (kilobytes). Flash requires you to erase before you can reclaim space to write. The process of reclaiming space by moving existing data to another block is known as garbage collection and when performed as a background activity has no impact on production activity. When it becomes a foreground operation, it significantly reduces production activity.
IDC's Eric Burgener discusses the four key feature sets needed to most effectively enable mixed workload consolidation in enterprise storage.
A few months ago, I was visiting a customer, who also happens to be a very large, global retailer. I sat down with their storage architect to get a sense of their environment, their application and technology dependencies, and ultimately, their storage decision criteria. They had been running EMC hybrid arrays for a while.
Inarguably, it has never been a better time to be a storage user deciding on a next-generation all-flash array. The last 18 months have been a phenomenal time for the storage industry, with a flurry of all-flash array product announcements, each claiming unique approaches to solving the challenges of getting rid of disk and going all-flash.