Check out additional Server StorageIO Tips & Articles here along with commentary in the news here

Server StorageIO January 2016 Update Newsletter

January 31, 2016 – 10:38 pm

Volume 16, Issue I – beginning of Year (BoY) Edition

Hello and welcome to the January 2016 Server StorageIO update newsletter.

Is it just me, or did January disappear in a flash like data stored in non-persistent volatile DRAM memory when the power is turned off? It seems like just the other day that it was the first day of the new year and now we are about to welcome in February. Needless to say, like many of you I have been busy with various projects, many of which are behind the scenes, some of which will start appearing publicly sooner while others later.

In terms of what have I been working on, it includes the usual of performance, availability, capacity and economics (e.g. PACE) related to servers, storage, I/O networks, hardware, software, cloud, virtual and containers. This includes NVM as well as NVMe based SSD’s, HDD’s, cache and tiering technologies, as well as data protection among other things with Hyper-V, VMware as well as various cloud services.

Enjoy this edition of the Server StorageIO update newsletter and watch for new tips, articles, StorageIO lab report reviews, blog posts, videos and podcast’s along with in the news commentary appearing soon.

Cheers GS

In This Issue

  • Feature Topic
  • Industry Trends News
  • Commentary in the news
  • Tips and Articles
  • StorageIOblog posts
  • Videos and Podcasts
  • Events and Webinars
  • Recommended Reading List
  • Industry Activity Trends
  • Server StorageIO Lab reports
  • New and Old Vendor Update
  • Resources and Links
  • Feature Topic – Microsoft Nano, Server 2016 TP4 and VMware

    This months feature topic is virtual servers and software defined storage including those from VMware and Microsoft. Back in November I mentioned the 2016 Technical Preview 4 (e.g. TP4) along with Storage Spaces Direct and Nano. As a reminder you can download your free trial copy of Windows Server 2016 TP4 from this Microsoft site here.

    Three good Microsoft Blog posts about storage spaces to check out include:

    • Storage Spaces Direct in Technical Preview 4 (here)
    • Hardware options for evaluating Storage Spaces Direct in Technical Preview 4 (here)
    • Storage Spaces Direct – Under the hood with the Software Storage Bus (here)

    As for Microsoft Nano, for those not familiar, it’s not a new tablet or mobile device, instead, it is a very light weight streamlined version of the Windows Server 2016 server. How streamlined? Much more so then the earlier Windows Server versions that simply disabled the GUI and desktop interfaces. Nano is smaller from a memory and disk storage space perspective meaning it uses less RAM, boots faster, has fewer moving parts (e.g. software modules) to break (or need patching).

    Specifically Nano removes 32 bit support and anything related to the desktop and GUI interfaces as well as removing the console interface. That’s right, no console or virtual console to log into, Wow is gone, access is via Powershell or Windows Management Interface tools from remote systems. How small is it? I have a Nano instance built on a VHDX that is under a GB in size, granted, its only for testing. The goal of Nano is to have a very light weight streamlined version of Windows Server that can run hundreds (or more) VMs in a small memory footprint, not to mention supports lots of containers. Nano is part of WIndows TP4, learn more about Nano here in this Microsoft post including how to get started using it.

    Speaking of VMware, if you have not received an invite yet to their Digital Enterprise February 6, 2016 announcement event, click here to register.

    StorageIOblog Posts

    Recent and popular Server StorageIOblog posts include:

    View other recent as well as past blog posts here

    Server Storage I/O Industry Activity Trends (Cloud, Virtual, Physical)

    StorageIO news (image licensed for use from Shutterstock by StorageIO)

    Some new Products Technology Services Announcements (PTSA) include:

    • EMC announced Elastic Cloud Storage (ECS) V2.2. A main theme of V2.2 is that besides being the 3rd generation of EMC object storage (dating back to Centera, then Atmos), is that ECS is also where the functionality of Centera, Atmos and other functionality converge. ECS provides object storage access along with HDFS (Hadoop and Hortonworks certified) and traditional NFS file access.

      Object storage access includes Amazon S3, OpenStack Swift, ATMOS and CAS (Centera). In addition to the access, added Centera functionality for regulatory compliance has been folded into the ECS software stack. For example, ECS is now compatible with SEC 17 a-4(f) and CFTC 1.3(b)-(c) regulations protecting data from being overwritten or erased for a specified retention period. Other enhancements besides scalability, resiliency and ease of use include meta data and search capabilities. You can download and try ECS for non-production workloads with no capacity or functionality limitations from EMC here.

    View other recent news and industry trends here

    StorageIO Commentary in the news

    StorageIO news (image licensed for use from Shutterstock by StorageIO)
    Recent Server StorageIO commentary and industry trends perspectives about news, activities tips, and announcements. In case you missed them from last month:

    View more Server, Storage and I/O hardware as well as software trends comments here

    Vendors you may not have heard of

    Various vendors (and service providers) you may not know or heard about recently.

    • Datrium – DVX and NetShelf server software defined flash storage and converged infrastructure
    • DataDynamics – StorageX is the software solution for enabling intelligent data migration, including from NetApp OnTap 7 to Clustered OnTap, as well as to and from EMC among other NAS file serving solutions.
    • Paxata – Little and Big Data management solutions

    Check out more vendors you may know, have heard of, or that are perhaps new on the Server StorageIO Industry Links page here (over 1,000 entries and growing).

    StorageIO Tips and Articles

    Recent Server StorageIO articles appearing in different venues include:

    And in case you missed them from last month

    Check out these resources and links technology, techniques, trends as well as tools. View more tips and articles here

    StorageIO Videos and Podcasts

    StorageIO podcasts are also available via Gregs StorageIO Podcast on Apple iTunes and at StorageIO.tv

    StorageIO Webinars and Industry Events

    EMCworld (Las Vegas) May 2-4, 2016

    Interop (Las Vegas) May 4-6 2016

    NAB (Las Vegas) April 19-20, 2016

    TBA – March 31, 2016

    Redmond Magazine Gridstore (How to Migrate from VMware to Hyper-V) February 25, 2016 Webinar (11AM PT)

    TBA – February 23, 2016

    Redmond Magazine and Dell Foglight – Manage and Solve Virtualization Performance Issues Like a Pro (Webinar 9AM PT) – January 19, 2016

    See more webinars and other activities on the Server StorageIO Events page here.

    From StorageIO Labs

    Research, Reviews and Reports

    Quick Look: What’s the Best Enterprise HDD for a Content Server?
    Which enterprise HDD for content servers

    Insight for Effective Server Storage I/O decision-making
    This StorageIO® Industry Trends Perspectives Solution Brief and Lab Review (compliments of Seagate and Servers Direct) looks at the Servers Direct (www.serversdirect.com) converged Content Solution platforms with Seagate (www.seagate.com) Enterprise Hard Disk Drive (HDDs).

    I was given the opportunity to do some hands-on testing running different application workloads with a 2U content solution platform along with various Seagate Enterprise 2.5” HDDs handle different application workloads. This includes Seagate’s Enterprise Performance HDDs with the enhanced caching feature.

    Read more in this Server StorageIO industry Trends Perspective white paper and lab review.

    Looking for NVM including SSD information? Visit the Server StorageIO www.thessdplace.com and www.thenvmeplace.com micro sites. View other StorageIO lab review and test drive reports here.

    Server StorageIO Recommended Reading List

    The following are various recommended reading including books, blogs and videos. If you have not done so recently, also check out the Intel Recommended Reading List (here) where you will also find a couple of mine as well as books from others. For this months recommended reading, it’s a blog site. If you have not visited Duncan Eppings (@DuncanYB) Yellow-Bricks site, you should, particular if you are interested in virtualization, high availability and related topical themes.

    Seven Databases in Seven Weeks guide to no SQL via Amazon.com

    Granted Duncan being a member of the VMware CTO office covers a lot of VMware related themes, however being the author of several books, he also covers non VMware related topics. Duncan recently did a really good and simple post about rebuilding a failed disk in a VMware VSAN vs. in a legacy RAID or erasure code based storage solution.

    One of the things that struck me as being important with what Duncan wrote about is avoiding apples to oranges comparisons. What I mean by this is that it is easy to compare traditional parity based or mirror type solutions that chunk or shard data on KByte basis spread over disks, vs. data that is chunk or sharded on GByte (or larger) basis over multiple servers and their disks. Anyway, check out Duncan’s site and recent post by clicking here.

    Server StorageIO Industry Resources and Links

    Check out these useful links and pages:

    storageio.com/links
    objectstoragecenter.com
    dataprotectiondiaries.com
    storageperformance.us
    thenvmeplace
    thessdplace.com
    storageio.com/performance.com
    storageio.com/raid
    storageio.com/ssd

    Ok, nuff said

    Cheers
    Gs

    Greg Schulz – Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press) and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier)
    twitter @storageio

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