No Flash in the Pan: Flash Memory in 2015 Hotter Than Ever

NEWS ANALYSIS: Solid-state NAND Flash storage has come a long, long way into general use after 10 years in the enterprise spotlight.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- When Tom Coughlin's Flash Media Summit debuted at the well-worn Wyndham Hotel in San Jose 10 years ago, about 300 storage folks came to hear about how important solid-state storage was going to become in the future.

Now the future is here. Data center systems are loaded with NAND flash, and IT managers are planning to buy more. Six thousand people attended this year's annual conference at the Santa Clara Convention Center, and interest in the sector has never been higher. Why? Because NAND flash is able to absorb a lot of content, it has no moving mechanicals to break, and it has constantly improved its return on investment. Storage networking software moves data from Point Wherever into flash storage faster than any other media.

Make no mistake about it: IT in 2015 is all about speed and usability. Security, sure. Reliability, certainly. Availability, you bet. But, as many athletic coaches like to say: You can't coach speed; either you have it, or you don't.

NAND flash has speed. The name fits.

The Flash Memory Summit at the Santa Clara Convention Center ended its three-day run on Aug. 13. Go here to download a collection of the proceedings (email registration required).

For a basic technical introduction and primer on flash storage by noted Flash expert Scott Lowe, go here.

Storage at the Heart of a Digital Business

Faced with that continuing deluge of data and new applications and devices to manage, CIOs are under pressure to deliver improved levels of IT performance, better and faster business insights, and improved customer and business user experiences. Resolving these challenges is complex, but some of them can be addressed by simply speeding up the data storage process, and much of this can be done by migrating to next-generation storage systems optimized for flash memory. Companies are doing this in large numbers.

Speedy storage processing not only reduces complexity and accelerates IT infrastructure, but it also improves business continuity and productivity. In a data-driven, mobile-first world, fast storage often can be the difference between higher yield and lower margins, customer engagement and abandonment, productivity and downtime, Pure Storage CEO Scott Dietzen told eWEEK.

While the data center is the lifeblood of every digital business, the heart of every new-gen data center is servers and data storage. This is foundational for a successful IT strategy, supporting myriad needs of the performance-intensive, next-generation system required to modernize and propel digital businesses and gain a competitive edge.

All-Flash is the Answer for Some Workloads

From virtual desktops to increased database processing and faster time to insight, to accelerated enterprise applications, all-flash storage can provide the performance and efficiencies required to keep operations moving and functioning optimally.

Forward-thinking businesses are always looking for ways to reduce IT waste and shrink their carbon footprints in the process. Moving to an all-flash storage system can significantly cut IT energy requirements, resulting in reduced power and cooling costs and lowered storage total cost of ownership and operating expenses.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...