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5/16/2012
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Pure Storage Rolls Out Next-Gen Storage Array

FlashArray 300 Series features high availability, data integrity, and VAAI support.

Startup Pure Storage on Wednesday launched its second all-flash array with enhancements for high-availability, encryption, and FlashCare I/O management.

The FlashArray 300 Series, which contains the 2.0 release of the Purity operating system, is now available in an active/active configuration for high availability and failover. It incorporates Pure Storage's FlashCare technology, which improves the longevity and reliability of the MLC flash memory Pure Storage uses in its array. FlashCare enables an optimized data layout, wear leveling, geometry-aligned writes, I/O micro-scheduling with QoS monitoring, and non-blocking reads and writes of data.

In addition, the FlashArray 300 Series is able to encrypt 100% of data with no encryption keys and includes support for the VMware vStorage API for array integration, which enables write-same/block zeroing, ATS, UNMAP, and thin provisioning. The FlashArray also deploys a Data Integrity Fabric, which checksums data to detect data integrity errors automatically.

[ Read about Quantum's new metadata appliance. See Quantum Unveils Appliance For Big Data. ]

One of the most important new features of the FlashArray is its support for active/active clustering. In this configuration, storage controllers connected by 40Gbps InfiniBand are placed in an active/active configuration, which allows customers to experience non-disruptive operations if a node in the cluster fails. To further bolster the high availability, controllers, flash drives, and NVRAM are all hot-swappable.

The FlashArray has 12 dedicated processor cores per controller and performs at 200,000 IOPS sustained and 100,000 write IOPS. It accommodates 5.5TB of drives per shelf, which are connected via redundant 6Gb SAS links, and connects to the network via 10Gb Ethernet and to the storage area network via 8Gb Fibre Channel.

Finally, the FlashArray now has an improved Web-based management console and command-line interface. With the new GUI, customers are able to provision storage, report on historical performance analytics, set tiering policies, carve out LUNs, and do performance troubleshooting.

Pure Storage says it has shipped 100 FlashArrays to customers who have validated and tested its all-flash arrays. Customer tests, according to Pure Storage, showed an average data reduction of 5.8 to 1, an average of under 1-microsecond latency, an average installation time of under 30 minutes and a cost of $4-$8 for each gigabyte of flash memory used. Most of Pure Storage's customers are in the database and analytics, virtual server, or virtual desktop space.

Pure Storage was founded in 2009 by CTO John 'Coz' Colgrove, a founder of Veritas, and chief architect John Hayes, formerly of Yahoo. The company is funded for $55 million from Greylock Partners, Redpoint Ventures, Sutter Hill Ventures, Samsung Ventures, Dianne Greene and Mendel Rosenblum, formerly founders of VMware, and Frank Slootman, formerly of Data Domain.

Deni Connor is founding analyst for Storage Strategies NOW, an industry analyst firm that focuses on storage, virtualization, and servers.

From thin provisioning to replication to federation, virtualization options let you reclaim idle disks, speed recovery, and avoid lock-in. Get the new, all-digital Storage Virtualization Guide issue of Network Computing. (Free registration required.)

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