Pure Storage Goes Big With Flash Object Storage, New AI Engine

Storage provider unveils new software that enables its FlashBlade customers to manage up to a whopping 75 blades as a single system. This was unheard of previously.

It seems that IT products never stay the same size—they either get way smaller or bigger all the time.

For example, IBM recently announced super-minuscule transistors that pave the way for a soon-to-come 5-nanometer processor, and IoT sensors have been shrunk down to the size of pinheads. On the other side, companies are now providing ultra-fast 40Gb and 100Gb networking pipes, super-fast high-performance servers and unlimited cloud data storage, things never before made available.

In flash storage, Pure Storage is among those providers that continue to go big. The Mountain View, Calif.-based flash storage maker announced at its Accelerate conference June 13 that it has new software that enables its FlashBlade customers to manage up to a whopping 75 blades as a single system. This was unheard of previously.

Pure also unveiled a new artificial intelligence engine and an ultra-fast, all-flash S3 object store specifically for use cases in rich media, health care and advanced analytics. Additionally, Pure introduced a 17TB blade to complement existing 8TB and 52TB configurations.

These are all what can be described as big-time enterprise flash storage features.

With the latest Purity software update for FlashBlade, users can scale from seven to 75 blades for a total maximum capacity of 4PB. With a proprietary networking module that allows up to five chassis to be managed as one cohesive system, organizations can deploy larger-scale, higher-performance systems that process more data at higher speeds, Pure said.

Object Storage Now Becoming Fast Storage

Historically, object storage has been like an offensive tackle in football: big and slow. Slow, however is not acceptable anymore in modern IT. As AWS S3 and other public cloud object storage protocols continue to spur the growth of object storage both on-premises and in the cloud, the pressure is on for storage providers to provide ultra-fast all-flash systems with an increased emphasis on performance.

Following is a breakdown on the main news Pure Storage brought to the table this week:

  • Tier 1 storage, re-defined: New software and hardware for the FlashArray product line now redefine tier 1 storage for production workloads. Purity/Active Cluster provides business continuity and zero recovery time objective via newly introduced sync replication delivered with effortless, one-click set-up, the company said. Current customers can upgrade to Purity/ActiveCluster free of charge and non-disruptively. Evergreen is inclusive of all new software updates and hardware innovations, such as the DirectFlash Shelf, which extends the scale capacity of FlashArray//X beyond the base chassis while preserving NVMe (non-volatile memory) performance.
  • FlashBlade updates turn big data into intelligent data: A series of updates to its FlashBlade product line allow users to find more value in data with five-fold improvements in both capacity and performance, the company said. This includes the new software in which FlashBlade customers can manage up to 75 blades as a single system.
  • The company demonstrated its 17TB blade to complement existing 8TB and 52TB configurations, as well as an ultra-fast, all-flash S3 object store to unlock additional use cases in rich media, healthcare and advanced analytics.
  • Introducing META: META, Pure’s new AI engine, uses advanced AI/ML techniques to change the storage ownership experience, and deliver a new level of reliability through predictive maintenance and support.

With Pure1 META, Pure Storage advances its self-learning storage management controls. Pure set up the foundation for self-learning storage with array-level automation delivered by Purity, which eliminates manual management and tuning operations.

Building a global sensor network with thousands of connected arrays allowed Pure to deliver cloud-based management and predictive support that has prevented more than 500 Severity 1 issues to date. Now, with Pure1 META, users can obtain answers to performance-forecasting questions, instead of workarounds that resulted in wasted expenses from over-provisioning or downtime from under-provisioning.

The company also announced the results of Evolution, an independent global research survey that explores the way businesses are balancing infrastructure and applications today and beyond.

Despite strong overall indicators of public cloud growth, a significant number of companies that ran workloads in public cloud environments have actually moved some or all of those workloads back on-premises (43 percent of businesses in North America have done so, according to the survey). In EMEA, 65 percent say they have reduced use of public cloud in the last 12 months because of security concerns.

For more information on Pure Storage, go here.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris Preimesberger

Chris Preimesberger is Editor of Features & Analysis at eWEEK, responsible in large part for the publication's coverage areas. In his 12 years and more than 3,900 stories at eWEEK, he has...