Flash as a storage media is a game changer!
Flash and All-Flash Arrays have become synonymous with performance. However, they are also regarded as expensive and lacking the full set of enterprise features, and are to be used as a solution for a specific pain point or a single application.
Flash prices have gone down considerably over the last few years and Flash as a storage media has gained maturity, yet the adoption and deployment gap between HDD-based storage and Flash-based storage is still prevalent in spite of the obvious shortcomings of HDD storage arrays.
Scalable Performance and Resilience Architecture (SPEAR)
SPEAR is the secret sauce that binds best-of-breed enterprise hardware components to an All-Flash Array. SPEAR is software-defined, meaning it is agnostic to any hardware or technology. SPEAR can easily and economically adapt to any advancements made in CPU power, networking and Flash media. Scalability combined with non-disruptive upgrades guarantees continuity and progress of both hardware and software within the array.
The K-Block is the building block of the K2 All-Flash Array, and encapsulates the following hardware components:
- Two K-Nodes, each a 1U storage controller
- Each K-Node provides full redundancy for its components:
- Two 8Gbps FC ports and two 10GbE iSCSI ports for external host connectivity
- Two 40Gbps InfiniBand ports for K-Node backend interconnectivity
- Two 6Gbps SAS ports for internal connectivity with the K-Block’s SSD shelves
- Two hot-swappable PSUs
- Two hot-swappable Battery Back Units (BBU)
- Base SSD shelf, 2U in size
- 24 hot-swappable SSDs; Enterprise grade SSD with MLC Flash
- Two hot-swappable controllers
- Two hot-swappable PSUs
- Expansion SSD shelf, 2U in size
- Same as the base SSD shelf
Scaling up means adding more capacity by adding Expansion Shelves without adding K-Blocks.
- The expansion increases the capacity density and reduces the cost per GB
- The Expansion Shelf is connected redundantly using SAS connectivity
- The expansion is done online with no downtime or decrease in performance
- The new configuration has the same performance as before
- Existing volumes are automatically redistributed between all the SSDs in the array
- No need to change any host connections or definitions
Scaling out means to increase the number of K-Blocks, thus adding more capacity and compute power.
- The expansion linearly increases the capacity, IOPS and throughput. The latency is kept consistently low and is indifferent to the expansion.
- Two InfiniBand switches are required to support the interconnect between all the K-Nodes in the array. Scaling beyond two K-Blocks will not require any additional networking hardware.
- The expansion is performed online with no downtime or decrease in performance
- Existing volumes are automatically redistributed between all the SSDs in the array and can be accessed from every K-Node in the array.
- New hosts can be connected to the new K-Block, and the new and existing hosts can access all new and existing volumes.
Scale-Up and Scale-Out
There is no particular order in which the K2 scales. The K2 can first scale up, then scale out and vice versa. This flexibility removes any compromises of using a storage array that is not tailored to the customer’s needs and datacenter requirements.
For example, scaling-up in a dual K-Block array with two Expansion Shelves is shown below:
For more information about increasing the performance of your VDI, SQL and Oracle environments with Kaminario Flash storage, contact Cornerstone today!