I recently attended Storage Field Day 7 and spent some time talking about the concept of data virtualization.  Data virtualization seeks to add a layer of        abstraction between the storage type and the client. Data virtualization, similar to what server virtualization did for compute resource, seeks to free the data from the underlying physical resources. Primary Data seeks to make data virtualization the cornerstone of software-defined storage. In November of last year Primary Data came out of stealth to address the problem of data mobility using data virtualization.  Today data is locked up in storage arrays, public cloud providers, and local server storage.  Each of these types of data repositories had different data service offerings ranging from rich to extremely limited. The metadata and data are locked away of the silo of the repository. A few solutions exist in the market today for data virtualization, but they rely on the data capabilities of theRead More →

A few years ago while attending EMC World, I had the chance to meet with Chuck Hollis and several other VMware employees to talk about an idea they had. They wanted to make use of untapped local storage resources inside an ESX host. Rather than simply holding the ESX boot image, they wanted to make the resource usable for virtual machines inside the entire ESX cluster. We talked over what seemed like a clustered file system that could protect data across ESX hosts. I pointed out that spinning disks are slow and they talked about using SSD drives to accelerate I/O operations. It was an interesting idea and I was curious if anything would ever come of it. As you might have guessed something did come of it: Virtual SAN. With the initial release of VSAN I was interested but, admittedly, a bit underwhelmed. Here we are, a year after general availability, and VSAN has taken aRead More →