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Items Tagged: VSA

Profiles/Reports

Storage for the Integrated Virtual Infrastructure: HP P4000 SAN Solutions

This paper examines the features and capabilities of the HP P4000 product family, and shows how these SAN solutions help businesses to overcome the storage-related growing pains they typically encounter as they deploy and scale out a virtual infrastructure.

Publish date: 06/14/11
Profiles/Reports

HP StoreVirtual Virtual Storage Appliance - The VSA for scalable VM density (TVS)

Virtual Storage Appliances (VSAs) have been around for a while – just over 5 years ago, the earliest vendors started to sample market interest in this technology.  In theory, the market was interested, but perhaps more so on paper than in actual adoption during those early days.  Regardless, that interest drove more vendors to release VSAs and today there are dozens of Virtual Storage Appliances on the market.  Many of these are focused on capabilities such as backup, but at least a handful can serve as primary storage beneath the virtual infrastructure.

The primary storage VSAs on the market came about as product or marketing experiments; perhaps to let customers experience a storage system without making a full investment, allow customers to ingest rogue virtual infrastructure storage back into their existing storage infrastructure, or enable consistent storage management as customers deployed workloads with remote service providers.

For certain, many of these primary storage VSAs have never found their footing, and still languish as a neglected technology in a dusty corner of a vendor’s product portfolio.  But there have been exceptions.  One is HP StoreVirtual.  HP has been quite serious about delivering StoreVirtual as a real storage solution with hefty capabilities.  StoreVirtual is one of HP’s several converged storage technologies that is blurring the boundaries between storage and compute, and helping customer infrastructures to scale and adapt while maintaining maximum efficiency.  The popular StoreVirtual product line comes in a variety of physical formats, from entry-level 1U 4 drive systems to extremely dense BladeSystem SANs.  Approximately 5 years ago, the StoreVirtual software foundation was also released in Virtual Storage Appliance form.  This StoreVirtual VSA is a full storage system that looks, acts, and functions just like its physical StoreVirtual brethren.  The intent behind HP’s StoreVirtual VSA is increased ease of use, increased storage functionality in the virtual infrastructure, and greater adaptability, within a dense footprint that can make use of any available storage resources (direct attached server storage or networked storage).  HP claims that StoreVirtual VSA leads the market in ease of use, performance, efficiency, and storage capabilities – all of which makes it ideally positioned to service primary workloads in the data center.

In this Technology Validation, we set out to examine StoreVirtual VSA, and through comparison to another leading virtual storage appliance (VMware’s vSphere Storage Appliance – VMware VSA) evaluate the effectiveness of StoreVirtual VSA’s architecture in enabling superior, primary-workload-ready storage in the virtual infrastructure.  With an eye on ease of use, efficiency, and flexibility, we put StoreVirtual VSA and VMware vSphere Storage Appliance through a detailed examination that included both a review of functionality and a hands-on lab examination of performance, scalability, resiliency, and ease of use.

Publish date: 06/12/13
Profiles/Reports

HP StoreOnce Boldly Goes Where No Deduplication Has Gone Before

Deduplication is a foundational technology for efficient backup and recovery. Vendors may argue over product features – where to dedupe, how much capacity savings, how fast are its backup speeds -- but everyone knows how central dedupe is to backup success.

However, serious pressures are forcing changes to the backup infrastructure and dedupe technologies. Explosive data growth is changing the whole market landscape as IT struggles with bloated backup windows, higher storage expenses, and increased management overhead. These pain points are driving real progress: replacing backup silos with expanded data protection platforms. These comprehensive systems backup from multiple sources to distributed storage targets, with single console management for increased control.

Dedupe is a critical factor in this scenario, but not in its conventional form as a point solution. Traditional dedupe, or Dedupe 1.0 as it is sometimes referred to, is suited to backup silos. Moving deduped data outside the system requires rehydrating, which impacts performance and capacity between the data center, ROBO, DR sites and the cloud. Dedupe must expand its feature set in order to serve next generation backup platforms.

A few vendors have introduced new dedupe technologies but most of them are still tied to specific physical backup storage systems and appliances. Of course there is nothing wrong with leveraging hardware and software to increase sales, but storage system-specific dedupe means that data must rehydrate whenever it moves beyond the system. This leaves the business with all the performance and capacity disadvantages the infrastructure had before.

 Federating dedupe across systems goes a long way to solve that problem. HP StoreOnce extends consistent dedupe across the infrastructure. Only HP implements the same deduplication technology in four places: target appliance, backup/media server, application source and virtual machine. This enables data to move freely between physical and virtual platforms and source and target machines without the need to rehydrate.

 This paper will describe the challenges of data protection in the face of huge data growth, why dedupe is critical to meeting the challenges, how HP is achieving its vision of federated dedupe with StoreOnce –- and what HP’s StoreOnce VSA announcement and achievement means to backup service providers, enterprise ROBO, and SMB customers. 
 

Publish date: 06/20/13
news / Blog

Defining Software-defined…Storage

We've been doing quite a bit of work lately with software solutions in the virtual infrastructure.  VMware and some others have started an industry-wide shift in thinking toward the idea of software defined infrastructure services, including networking and storage - services that have traditionally been entirely dependent upon specialized hardware and control/operating systems.

news

HP Helps Software-Defined Storage Customers Maximize Server Investments With Data Tiering

HP today announced new HP Converged Storage innovations that enable customers to maximize the return on investment (ROI) of their virtual infrastructure by lowering costs while increasing agility and capacity utilization.

  • Premiered: 08/13/13
  • Author: Taneja Group
  • Published: The Wall Street Journal
Topic(s): TBA HP TBA StoreVirtual TBA VSA
news

HP adds auto-tiering for SSDs to StoreVirtual VSA

Hewlett-Packard Co. today unveiled an upgraded StoreVirtual Virtual Storage Appliance, adding auto-tiering and larger-capacity licenses to make the virtual SAN software better suited to larger companies.

  • Premiered: 08/14/13
  • Author: Taneja Group
  • Published: Tech Target: Search Virtual Storage
Topic(s): TBA HP TBA StoreVirtual TBA VSA TBA Virtualization TBA SSD TBA Flash
news

Software-defined storage might not be so radical after all

While software-defined storage is receiving lots of buzz, it isn't as new an idea as it may seem; storage virtualization vendors have been working toward it for years.

  • Premiered: 09/12/13
  • Author: Taneja Group
  • Published: Tech Target: Search Virtual Storage
Topic(s): TBA SDDC TBA Software Defined Data Center TBA Storage TBA SDS TBA Virtualization TBA Virtual Infrastructure TBA Storage Virtualization TBA software-centric architecture TBA VSA
news

HP StoreOnce VSA Software-Defined Storage Solution

Spending on cloud-based backup-as-a-service offerings is expected to grow more than 14% worldwide through 2017 for SMB customers.(1) At the same time, the two most commonly cited business initiatives impacting IT spending were cost reduction and risk management.(2) This presents an opportunity for service providers and enterprises to fundamentally change how they address the cost of data protection at small sites and in virtualized environments.

  • Premiered: 06/11/13
  • Author: Taneja Group
  • Published: Storage Newsletter
Topic(s): TBA HP TBA Storage TBA StoreOnce TBA VSA TBA Virtualization TBA converged
news

Emerging Trends in Software Defined Storage

“Software defined pretty-much-anything” is getting a lot of attention in the IT trade press. It seems new and different and promises to solve everyone’s problems around prioritizing applications, sharing storage across massive distributed environments and optimizing computing resources around business data needs.

  • Premiered: 10/23/13
  • Author: Taneja Group
  • Published: InfoStor
Topic(s): TBA software-defined TBA SDS TBA IO Optimization TBA Virtual storage TBA Virtualization TBA Storage TBA scale-out TBA VSA TBA EMC TBA ViPR TBA IBM SVC TBA DataCore TBA StoreVirtual TBA HP TBA VMWare TBA VSAN TBA scalability TBA Mobility
news

How the future of data storage will stack up

The future of data storage will have storage shedding the role of a passive technology player as it integrates more closely with applications and workloads.

  • Premiered: 10/31/13
  • Author: Mike Matchett
  • Published: Tech Target: Search Storage
Topic(s): TBA Storage TBA Virtualization TBA VM TBA Virtual Machine TBA Block Storage TBA File Storage TBA object storage TBA SAN TBA Automation TBA Oracle TBA ZFS TBA Tintri TBA Atlantis Computing TBA ILIO TBA Actifio TBA Maginatics TBA MagFS TBA Virtual storage TBA VSA TBA converged storage TBA Unified Storage TBA software-defined TBA software-defined storage TBA SDS TBA EMC TBA ViPR TBA Virtualized Big Data TBA Big Data
news

Goodbye LUN technology, you served us well

The era of LUNs and volumes, as we have known them for decades in the data storage industry, is quietly coming to an end. And if you ask me, it's for all the right reasons, even if storage administrators may feel threatened by the change.

  • Premiered: 10/25/13
  • Author: Arun Taneja
  • Published: Tech Target: Search Storage
Topic(s): TBA LUN TBA Storage TBA Volumes TBA server TBA replication TBA Compression TBA VM TBA Virtualization TBA VMWare TBA Hyper-V TBA Gridstore TBA Nimble Storage TBA Nutanix TBA Scale Computing TBA SimpliVity TBA Tintri TBA HP TBA StoreVirtual VSA TBA Virtual storage TBA VSA TBA Virsto TBA QoS
news

Storage infrastructure management is still elusive

We've been on a multi-decade crusade to address performance and basic storage management tasks to handle things such as protecting data in place, and scaling and expanding our data storage systems to meet new requirements. But today, when performance and scaling and expansion issues are addressed, it will be revealed that the last major challenge in the data center is storage management.

  • Premiered: 12/17/13
  • Author: Taneja Group
  • Published: Tech Target: Search Storage
Topic(s): TBA Jeff Boles TBA scalability TBA Storage TBA storage infrastructure TBA VM TBA Virtualization TBA Virtual Infrastructure TBA Virtual Infrastructure Management TBA converged storage TBA Converged Infrastructure TBA hyper-converged TBA HP TBA Hitachi TBA IBM TBA Nutanix TBA SimpliVity TBA VSA TBA FalconStor TBA Nexenta TBA StorMagic TBA VMWare TBA VSAN TBA Gridstore TBA Tintri TBA Virtual Machine TBA SDS TBA software defined
news / Blog

The Convergence-ware Battle

I recently wrapped up a market landscape on Virtual Storage Appliances for primary storage in the virtual infrastructure (you'll see it floating around soon enough, or email me for your copy).

  • Premiered: 12/23/13
  • Author: Taneja Group
Topic(s): VSA Virtualization Storage TGLabs SSD Flash HP StoreVirtual StoreVirtual VSA
Profiles/Reports

Software Storage Solutions for Virtualization

Storage has long been a major source of operational and architectural challenges for IT practitioners, but today these challenges are most felt in the virtual infrastructure. The challenges are sprung from the physicality of storage – while the virtual infrastructure has made IT entirely more agile and adaptable than ever before, storage still depends upon digital bits that are permanently stored on a physical device somewhere within the data center.

For practitioners who have experienced the pain caused by this – configuration hurdles, painful data migrations, and even disasters – the idea of software-defined storage likely sounds somewhat ludicrous. But the term also holds tremendous potential to change the way IT is done by tackling this one last vestige of the traditional, inflexible IT infrastructure.

The reality is that software-defined storage isn’t that far away. In the virtual infrastructure, a number of vendors have long offered Virtual Storage Appliances (VSAs) that can make storage remarkably close to software-defined. These solutions allow administrators to easily and rapidly deploy storage controllers within the virtual infrastructure, and equip either networked storage pools or the direct-attached storage within a server with enterprise-class storage features that are consistent and easily managed by the virtual administrator, irrespective of where the virtual infrastructure is (in the cloud, or on premise). Such solutions can make comprehensive storage functionality available in places where it could never be had before, allow for higher utilization of stranded pools of storage (such as local disk in the server), and enable a homogeneous management approach even across many distributed locations.

The 2012-2013 calendar years have brought an increasing amount of attention and energy in the VSA marketplace. While the longest established, major vendor VSA solution in the marketplace has been HP’s StoreVirtual VSA, in 2013 an equally major vendor – VMware – introduced a similar, software-based, scale-out storage solution for the virtual infrastructure – VSAN. While VMware’s VSAN does not directly carry a VSA moniker, and in fact stands separate from VMware’s own vSphere Storage Appliance, VSAN has an architecture very similar to the latest generation of HP’s own StoreVirtual VSA. Both of these products are scale-out storage software solutions that are deployed in the virtual infrastructure and contain solid-state caching/tiering capabilities that enhance performance and make them enterprise-ready for production workloads. VMware’s 2013 announcement finally meant HP is no longer the sole major vendor (Fortune 500) with a primary storage VSA approach. This only adds validation to other vendors who have long offered VSA-based solutions, vendors like FalconStor, Nexenta, and StorMagic.

We’ve turned to a high level assessment of five market leaders who are today offering VSA or software storage in the virtual infrastructure. We’ve assessed these solutions here with an eye toward how they fit as primary storage for the virtual infrastructure. In this landscape, we’ve profiled the key characteristics and capabilities critical to storage systems fulfilling this role. At the end of our assessment, clearly each solution has a place in the market, but not all VSA solutions are ready for primary storage. Those that are, may stand to reinvent the practice of storage in customer data centers. 

Publish date: 01/03/14
news / Blog

How Do you Software-Define Storage? Explaining the "real meat" behind SDS

"What is Software-defined Storage?" This is by no means an easy question to answer, and there are a lot of people pushing different visions and definitions. For our part in this conversation, I try to remain attentive to a longer term ideal vision (where the market should go) while staying attentive to reality today, and where practitioners can actually get tangible benefit from solutions that may be early or partial incarnations of that long term ideal, but still offer significant benefit today.

  • Premiered: 04/09/14
  • Author: Taneja Group
Topic(s): software-defined Storage SDS IBM Storwize V5000 Tintri VMstore VSA
Profiles/Reports

HP ConvergedSystem: Altering Business Efficiency and Agility with Integrated Systems

The era of IT infrastructure convergence is upon us. Over the past few years Integrated Computing systems – the integration of compute, networking, and storage - have burst onto the scene and have been readily adopted by large enterprise users. The success of these systems has been built by taking well-known IT workloads and combining it with purpose built integrated computing systems optimized for that particular workload. Example workloads today that are being integrated to create these systems are Cloud, Big Data, Virtualization, Database, VDI or even combinations of two or more.

In the past putting these workload solutions together meant having or hiring technology experts with multiple domain knowledge expertise. Integration and validation could take months of on-premise work. Fortunately, technology vendors have matured along with their Integrated Computing systems approach, and now practically every vendor seems to be touting one integrated system or another focused on solving a particular workload problem. The promised set of business benefits delivered by these new systems fall into these key areas:

·         Implementation efficiency that accelerates time to realizing value from integrated systems

·         Operational efficiency through optimized workload density and an ideally right sized set of infrastructure

·         Management efficiency enabled by an integrated management umbrella that ties all of the components of a solution together

·         Scale and agility efficiency unlocked through a repeatedly deployable building block approach

·         Support efficiency that comes with deeply integrated, pre-configured technologies, overarching support tools, and a single vendor support approach for an entire-set of infrastructure

In late 2013, HP introduced a new portfolio oSDDCffering called HP ConvergedSystem – a family of systems that includes a specifically designed virtualization offering. ConvergedSystem marked a new offering, designed to tackle key customer pain points around infrastructure and software solution deployment, while leveraging HP’s expertise in large scale build-and-integration processes to herald an entirely new level of agility around speed of ordering and implementation. In this profile, we’ll examine how integrated computing systems marks a serious departure from the inefficiencies of traditional order-build-deploy customer processes, and also evaluate HP’s latest advancement of these types of systems.

Publish date: 09/02/14
news

5 Tips For Working With HP's StoreVirtual VSA

Having had the chance to spend some serious time with the latest StoreVirtual VSA (11.5) in Taneja Group's validation lab, I thought I'd share five tips that made my life a little easier, and may make your experience with it more productive.

  • Premiered: 09/10/14
  • Author: Taneja Group
  • Published: Virtualization Review
Topic(s): TBA HP TBA StoreVirtual TBA StoreVirtual VSA TBA VSA TBA LeftHand Networks TBA DAS TBA Storage TBA RAID TBA ESX Server TBA ESX TBA Data Center TBA Hyper-V TBA KVM TBA vSphere TBA iSCSI TBA LUN TBA SSD TBA Flash TBA Adaptive Optimization TBA AO TBA VM TBA Virtual Machine TBA SRM
news

Siloing stifles data center growth

It's time to knock down those silos, one by one. IT is transforming from a siloed set of reactive cost centers into a service provider with a focus on helping the business compete.

  • Premiered: 09/16/14
  • Author: Mike Matchett
  • Published: Tech Target: Search Data Center
Topic(s): TBA Data Center TBA tech target TBA Mike Matchett TBA Virtualization TBA HP TBA StoreVirtual TBA StoreVirtual VSA TBA VSA TBA IT infrastructure TBA VMWare TBA VSAN TBA Virtual SAN TBA convergence TBA Hypervisor TBA VCE TBA Dell TBA IBM TBA hyper convergence TBA software defined infrastructure TBA Maxta TBA Hybrid
Profiles/Reports

Scale Computing HC3 And VMware Virtual SAN Hyperconverged Solutions - Head to Head

Scale Computing was an early proponent of hyperconverged appliances and is one of the innovators in this marketplace. Since the release of Scale Computing’s first hyperconverged appliance, many others have come to embrace the elegance of having storage and compute functionality combined on a single server. Even the virtualization juggernaut VMware has seen the benefits of abstracting, pooling, and running storage and compute on shared commodity hardware. VMware’s current hyperconverged storage initiative, VMware Virtual SAN, seems to be gaining traction in the marketplace. We thought it would be an interesting exercise to compare and contrast Scale Computing’s hyperconverged appliance to a hyperconverged solution built around VMware Virtual SAN. Before we delve into this exercise, however, let’s go over a little background history on the topic.

Taneja Group defines hyperconvergence as the integration of multiple previously separate IT domains into one system in order to serve up an entire IT infrastructure from a single device or system. This means that hyperconverged systems contain all IT infrastructure—networking, compute and storage—while promising to preserve the adaptability of the best traditional IT approaches. Such capability implies an architecture built for seamless and easy scaling over time, in a "grow as needed” fashion.

Scale Computing got its start with scale-out storage appliances and has since morphed these into a hyperconverged appliance—HC3. HC3 was the natural evolution of its well-regarded line of scale-out storage appliances, which includes both a hypervisor and a virtual infrastructure manager. HC3’s strong suit is its ease of use and affordability. The product has seen tremendous growth and now has over 900 deployments.

VMware got its start with compute virtualization software and is by far the largest virtualization company in the world. VMware has always been a software company, and takes pride in its hardware agnosticism. VMware’s first attempt to combine shared direct-attached storage (DAS) storage and compute on the same server resulted in a product called “VMware vSphere Storage Appliance” (VSA), which was released in June of 2011. VSA had many limitations and didn’t seem to gain traction in the marketplace and reached its end of availability (EOA) in June of 2014. VMware’s second attempt, VMware Virtual SAN (VSAN), which was announced at VMworld in 2013, shows a lot of promise and seems to be gaining acceptance, with over 300 paying customers using the product. We will be comparing VMware Virtual SAN to Scale Computing’s hyperconverged appliance, HC3, in this paper.

Here we have two companies: Scale Computing, which has transformed from an early innovator in scale-out storage to a company that provides a hyperconverged appliance; and VMware, which was an early innovator in compute virtualization and since has transformed into a company that provides the software needed to create build-your-own hyperconverged systems. We looked deeply into both systems (HC3 and VSAN) and walked both through a series of exercises to see how they compare. We aimed this review at what we consider a sweet spot for these products: small to medium-sized enterprises with limited dedicated IT staff and a limited budget. After spending time with these two solutions, and probing various facets of them, we came up with some strong conclusions about their ability to provide an affordable, easy to use, scalable solution for this market.

The observations we have made for both products are based on hands-on testing both in our lab and on-site at Scale Computing’s facility in Indianapolis, Indiana. Although we talk about performance in general terms, we do not, and you should not, construe this to be a benchmarking test. We have, in good faith, verified all conclusions made around any timing issues. Moreover, the numbers that we are using are generalities that we believe are widely known and accepted in the virtualization community.

Publish date: 10/01/14
Profiles/Reports

HP ConvergedSystem: Altering Business Efficiency and Agility with Integrated Systems

The era of IT infrastructure convergence is upon us. Over the past few years Integrated Computing systems – the integration of compute, networking, and storage - have burst onto the scene and have been readily adopted by large enterprise users. The success of these systems has been built by taking well-known IT workloads and combining it with purpose built integrated computing systems optimized for that particular workload. Example workloads today that are being integrated to create these systems are Cloud, Big Data, Virtualization, Database, VDI or even combinations of two or more.

In the past putting these workload solutions together meant having or hiring technology experts with multiple domain knowledge expertise. Integration and validation could take months of on-premise work. Fortunately, technology vendors have matured along with their Integrated Computing systems approach, and now practically every vendor seems to be touting one integrated system or another focused on solving a particular workload problem. The promised set of business benefits delivered by these new systems fall into these key areas:

·         Implementation efficiency that accelerates time to realizing value from integrated systems

·         Operational efficiency through optimized workload density and an ideally right sized set of infrastructure

·         Management efficiency enabled by an integrated management umbrella that ties all of the components of a solution together

·         Scale and agility efficiency unlocked through a repeatedly deployable building block approach

·         Support efficiency that comes with deeply integrated, pre-configured technologies, overarching support tools, and a single vendor support approach for an entire-set of infrastructure

In late 2013, HP introduced a new portfolio offering called HP ConvergedSystem – a family of systems that includes a specifically designed virtualization offering. ConvergedSystem marked a new offering, designed to tackle key customer pain points around infrastructure and software solution deployment, while leveraging HP’s expertise in large scale build-and-integration processes to herald an entirely new level of agility around speed of ordering and implementation. In this profile, we’ll examine how integrated computing systems marks a serious departure from the inefficiencies of traditional order-build-deploy customer processes, and also evaluate HP’s latest advancement of these types of systems.

Publish date: 10/16/14