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Fast cloud storage that keeps pace with demanding workloads and budgets



Feeling the need for speed?

 Most organizations today depend on data as a driving force behind many of their key business processes and workloads.  Keeping up with data storage growth and delivery at the speed that today’s demanding workloads require, is stretching IT budgets and staff to the breaking point. And with unstructured data playing an ever increasing role in workloads, 80-90% of all data in an organization according to some research, finding new fast and cost-efficient cloud storage options is essential.  Workloads such as cloud applications that can scale by rapidly spinning up VMs to meet demand. These applications require cloud object storage and cloud block storage solutions that scale to deliver needed virtual machine storage and image storage, with the same speed and cost efficiency as the VMs. Dedicated traditional storage arrays can offer the speed for many applications but comes at a high cost and when put into a shared cloud environment. Performance can suffer as competing applications are all eating up I/O and increasing storage latency for all. Imagine hundreds of thousands of external customers trying to do searches across a large private cloud database serving up information that directly drives a company’s revenue. These customers expect lightning fast response to their queries. Applications that need to access and analyze vast arrays of unstructured social media data, for fast insights and actions, need new levels of performance that cloud storage solutions need to respond to.


Leverage new cloud storage technologies to meet demands

Things have changed. All-flash solid-state drive (SSD) storage technology has been quickly evolving and has become a very viable option for Tier-1 cloud storage. All-flash cloud storage delivers performance that traditional hard disk drives (HDD) can’t come close to for cloud applications. While traditional HDD solutions deliver hundreds of I/O’s per second (IOPS), SSDs can deliver thousands of IOPS with significantly reduced latency which is critical for interactive on-line systems. Beyond the obvious performance difference, SSD all-flash cloud storage offers unparalleled reliability when compared to HDD storage because there are no moving parts. Further, all-flash private cloud storage arrays consume significantly less power and do not require as much cooling as HDDs. This allows datacenters to cut the cost to power their storage arrays as well as costs to cool the datacenter. Also, less datacenter floor space is needed because of the higher storage density of all-flash SSD.


The all-flash SSD cloud storage arrays available today have all of the enterprise Tier-1 features and management capabilities that are needed for cloud storage systems and they can be provisioned in a fraction of the time of traditional HDD arrays—a real plus for on-demand cloud storage. Provisioning speed is very important for managing and delivering any type of cloud storage resource, both block storage, such as OpenStack® Cinder and block/object storage such as OpenStack with Ceph. However, for databases and real-time on-line transaction processing (OLTP) workloads, which require block storage, SSD all-flash storage arrays under OpenStack with Ceph enable the use of cloud storage for all new cloud applications and workloads that would have previously required dedicated assets. These workloads take significant advantage of the high IOPS speeds and sub-millisecond latency of all-flash SSD cloud storage.


The Price and protection is Right

The biggest limitation to implementing all-flash SSD cloud storage in the past has been the price difference per gigabyte with HDD systems. Things have changed. 3D NAND technology has taken SSD to a price point that is now on par with HDD storage. By combining all-flash SSD with OpenStack Cinder and Ceph, enterprise IT can create huge persistent and ephemeral VM cloud storage pools that can scale quickly to handle the most demanding cloud block storage database and OLTP applications, as well as cloud object storage needs. Building cloud block storage using OpenStack and Ceph also prevents vendor lock-in by building on open source standards, which keeps your costs down and increases future agility.


Major enterprises are now seeing the cost and performance benefits of all-flash SSD cloud storage over HDD alternatives. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil headquartered Ecad is responsible for centralizing the collection, distribution, and protection of music performing copyrights in Brazil. Over the last five years, the company experienced an overwhelming revenue growth rate of 182 percent, and a 70 percent increase in database volume. In six months alone, Ecad generated approximately 25 terabytes of big data—and it continues to grow at an accelerated rate. In order to keep pace with a staggering amount of data growth without having to add further overhead, they implemented a private cloud based on HPE Helion CloudSystem Enterprise and HPE 3PAR StoreServ. Their use of HPE Helion OpenStack in their private cloud for easy integration and flexibility along with all-flash SSD storage allowed them to quickly deliver high-speed applications, as well as enhance quality of service to their customers. Ecad can now deliver servers and storage faster, with more reliable IT services and critical processes to its base of more than 1,200 clients.


Cloud storage for the speed of business

HPE 3PAR StoreServ storage is a Tier-1 all-flash data storage array that can scale from midsized businesses up to the largest enterprises and service providers, for instant application provisioning and high levels of service—at a fraction of the price of what SSD technology used to cost. Its remarkable speed—3M+ IOPS and 0.2 to 0.8ms latency—and proven system architecture has been extended to transform mainstream midrange and enterprise deployments. With solutions from just a few terabytes, up to more than 20 petabytes in scale, along with 99.9999% data availability, it’s perfect for handling mission-critical workloads with instant response times.


The HPE 3PAR StoreServ family of flash-optimized data storage systems modernizes your data center and delivers affordable speed for any cloud application workload demand. It offers rapid and automated provisioning, multi-tenant design, hardware-accelerated deduplication and sub-1ms latency—all within a single Tier-1 storage architecture that can fit 563TB into 1U of rack space. HPE 3PAR StorServ is integrated with HPE Helion OpenStack® ensuring a storage solution that is open and one that can grow in capability as the OpenStack® open source standard evolves.


HPE 3PAR StoreServ cloud storage delivers faster performance for workloads, faster provisioning time, lower power and cooling, greater reliability and availability than HDD alternatives. Now that all-flash SSD data storage costs the same as HDDs— while offering unparalleled performance, scalability, simplicity and adaptability—it only makes sense to start evolving your private cloud to storage that’s all-flash and no limits.


Recommended Resources:

Take a few minutes to watch the video on HPE 3PAR StorServ portfolio chalktalk that discusses the system advantages of a converged storage strategy that scales from midrange to enterprise using all-flash across unified cloud object storage and cloud block storage workloads.  


For more information and resources on how to deliver cost-efficient fast cloud storage that scales to meet performance demanding OLTP, mission-critical and analytics applications, see the Storage in the Cloud use case site as well as how partners like SUSE are enabling customers to create single, unified, software-defined storage clusters that provides applications with object, block, and file4 system storage based on Ceph.

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About the Author


Deborah Martin is a cloud enthusiast with over 7 years in creating cloud solutions for multiple industries and business needs. She is part of the HPE Helion team that works to promote and educate on solutions for key business use cases for cloud computing

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