As we wrapped up at the Gartner Data Center Conference last month, we reflected on the highlights of the event for SanDisk®. We felt that many of the analyst sessions validated some of the key points we’ve been hearing from our customers: the storage industry is evolving, and flash is a key driver for increased performance and efficiency in the data center. In particular, the increased attention on the role that software plays in the evolution of enterprise storage is a theme that resonated with us.
For the FlashSoft team, the highlight of the event was our panel discussion on the morning of Wednesday, December 11, posted here if you missed it. Joined by more than one hundred conference attendees, we hosted four IT professionals in a panel discussion about the use of flash in servers to improve application performance and storage efficiency. Each of the panelists had deployed FlashSoft software to improve performance of a specific application in their data center operations, and each spoke about the benefits of server-side flash from their perspective.
Some panelists had deployed FlashSoft as a read-write cache, using write-back caching to accelerate both write operations as well as reads. One panelist commented that using FlashSoft as a read cache had removed so much overhead from the underlying storage, that write operations were sufficiently improved. In other use cases, the workloads were considerably read-intensive, so the IT managers found deploying FlashSoft as a read cache most appropriate to their requirements.
The diversity of the panel was evident in the variety of use cases – from real-time analysis of mobile data, to eDiscovery for legal teams, retrieval of electronic medical records, and increased acceleration of line-of-business manufacturing applications. Some deployments were large, others were smaller. Some environments were virtualized, others were built on bare-metal Linux and Windows servers.
Despite the diversity of business use cases and technical environments that the panelists represented, in the words of one panelist, “we all have one thing in common: we are being asked to increase the performance of an application that we aren’t allowed to touch, and the fundamental problem is the latency of a storage system that we can’t upgrade, at least not in the timeframe our users expect.”
There’s no better way to sum up the panel’s discussion. Feedback from the audience was very strong, and the Q&A between the audience members and the panelists was exceptionally good. If you didn’t attend the Gartner Data Center Conference, or if you did attend but missed our session, please contact us and we would be happy to share additional insight from the panel discussion with you.