Pure Storage Introduces FlashBlade: The Cloud-Scale All-Flash Data Platform

Built for innovators, FlashBlade addresses today’s rapidly expanding data requirements, powers tomorrow’s discoveries, insights and creations – one blade at a time

SAN FRANCISCO, March 14, 2016 -- Pure Storage (NYSE: PSTG), the market's leading independent all-flash array vendor, today announced Pure Storage FlashBlade, an all-flash storage platform designed to store the biggest, fastest data of today and tomorrow. FlashBlade is an elastic scale-out system that delivers all-flash performance to multi-petabyte-scale data sets at economics of less than $1/GB usable. Together, Pure Storage FlashBlade and the Pure Storage FlashArray form a complete platform for organizations to build their all-flash cloud.

All-flash storage solutions have already transformed the structured data powering databases, applications and VMs. But unstructured data, both larger and growing faster, is poised for a similar transformation. While the “big data” revolution has shown organizations the potential value dormant in their large pools of unstructured data, traditional unstructured data solutions – legacy NAS filers and scale-out NAS – have remained slow at scale.

These legacy systems are challenged in several dimensions by demands for data to be both big and fast. First and foremost, they were architected for disk – a fundamentally slow media. Second, they have limited metadata scale, which constrains performance even when retrofitted with flash. Finally, their scaling approach typically involves partitioning data to nodes, leading to data silos that cause performance bottlenecks and management frustration. FlashBlade addresses these shortcomings with a three-fold value proposition – big, fast and simple.

While big data increases exponentially, the approach to analytics is growing richer with more complex and highly iterative queries. As a result, scientists, engineers and developers are seeking a new type of storage platform that can deliver fast performance across a massive expanse of data and connecting clients simply and easily, without the expense and complexity of exotic, high performance legacy systems. Target workloads for FlashBlade include:

  • Born-Digital Science & Engineering.  Whether designing the next-generation chip, simulating airflow over an airplane wing, analyzing weather patterns or teaching a car how to drive itself – organizations are doing it digitally. Today’s scientists and engineers increasingly have limitless compute cores at their disposal – but those compute cores are limited by the ability to connect to and process massive data sets. Bigger, faster data enables richer simulations, smarter models and faster discovery.
  • Analytics of Everything.  Whether harnessing data from an increasingly-digital business, detecting and responding to threats from a security perimeter or collecting data from billions of IoT sensors spread around the world – competitiveness and security in tomorrow’s economy runs on data. That data is growing exponentially – and the tools to analyze it are getting richer and more transactional, capable of complex queries across massive data sets. The future of analytics requires a big and fast data platform that doesn’t constrain the questions or insights that are possible.
  • Cloud-Native Applications. We’re seeing a sea-change in how webscale cloud applications are being built. VMs are giving way to containers and micro-services, feeding the DevOps approach to building and running applications. These new applications are built to be infinitely and instantly scalable, and power a new set of customer experiences that run on data. Webscale applications need a big, fast and infinitely scalable data platform.

 

FlashBlade is built on an innovative elastic scale-out architecture, which combines commodity hardware components with unique software and ultra-dense packaging to achieve extreme performance, scale, density and efficiency, while delivering a truly affordable price-point for all-flash storage. All FlashBlade hardware and software is engineered from scratch by Pure Storage, and consists of three core elements:

  • Blade: The core scale-out element of FlashBlade, each blade contains compute power for data and metadata processing, raw NAND flash for storage and NV-RAM capacity for power-safe protection of writes in flight. Blades are engineered to be ultra-dense and low-power, in 8TB and 52TB capacities.
  • Elasticity Scale-Out Software: Running in a distributed fashion across all blades, Elasticity is the software heart of FlashBlade. Elasticity implements a common object store in the system, storage services such as data reduction, encryption and N+2 erasure coding, scale-out protocol services such as NFS (file) and S3 (object), as well as low-level flash management and LDPC error correction. Because Elasticity is one code base across flash management, protocols, volume and storage services, all layers share a common extensible metadata engine and garbage collection for higher global system efficiency.
  • Elastic Fabric: FlashBlade includes a built-in, software-defined, low-latency 40 Gb/s Ethernet network. The Elastic Fabric combines blade-to-blade, chassis interconnect and client connectivity into one network, with software-defined QoS to ensure proper traffic prioritization. Both the Elastic Fabric and Elasticity leverage proprietary protocols on top of the commodity Ethernet network for the highest performance low-latency communication.

FlashBlade enables organizations of any size to use data more powerfully, bringing previously-unavailable performance, scale and simplicity to a wide range of use cases. FlashBlade makes all-flash storage affordable for even the largest file and object environments, at a cost of less than $1 per usable GB. FlashBlade enables innovators to focus on innovation, not storage.

 

Big:

  • Elastic Scale-out: FlashBlade grows capacity, IO and metadata performance, bandwidth, and client connectivity linearly as 8TB or 52TB blades are added non-disruptively to the system;
  • Petabyte scale in 4U: FlashBlade starts at <100 TBs, and can grow to store up to 1.6PBs of effective capacity in a 4U chassis, and multiple chassis can be interconnected to build larger systems.

 

Fast:

  • All-flash performance and efficiency: FlashBlade delivers up to 15 GB/s of bandwidth per 4U chassis and consistent all-flash low-latency to accelerate any workload, as well as dramatically higher efficiency, replacing racks of storage with its 4U form-factor;
  •  Metadata scale: FlashBlade is engineered with speed at scale in mind. The future-proof architecture of the Elasticity OS supports creating over 100 million unique objects/files every second for 20 years. In true Evergreen style, any upgrades to support a larger address space are non-disruptive by design.

 

Simple:

  • Dramatic simplicity: One system, one true, gigantic scale-out namespace. Multi-protocol access. A simple web-based GUI and REST API, and cloud-based management and support from Pure1. Anyone can manage FlashBlade – at any scale.
  • File and Object: FlashBlade is built on a common scale-out object store that can be accessed via both file and object protocols, and can adapt to new future protocols easily;

 

The combination of FlashBlade and Pure Storage’s flagship FlashArray deliver a complete all-flash platform to address any workload of any size for any organization. The simplicity and agility of Pure Storage alleviate the constraints of retrofit flash-based alternatives and the complexity of traditional storage portfolios. For additional information on the latest from Pure Storage, please visit our blog.

 

Availability

FlashBlade is now available in an Early Access Program for select customers, with a Directed Availability release for production workloads planned for the second half of calendar 2016. If you are interested in participating in the Early Access Program, please contact a Pure Storage reseller: http://info.purestorage.com/contactsales.html.

Quotes:

“IDC believes that the all-flash data center for primary storage is quickly becoming a reality, but newer storage architectures designed to deliver better cost efficiency at scale are needed for flash to be more broadly used in secondary storage environments,” said Eric Burgener, Research Director Storage, IDC. “With the FlashBlade announcement, Pure now has an integrated portfolio of all-flash offerings that support block, file and/or object access and cost-effectively cover both primary and secondary storage environments.”

“The value that can be gained from efficiently storing and analyzing unstructured data has a transformative affect on business,” said John Hayes, Co-founder and Chief Architect, Pure Storage. “FlashBlade unlocks new capabilities and use cases that are simply not possible with today’s existing solutions by delivering real-time analytics at massive scale and blazing speeds to enable the future of innovation.”

Pure//Accelerate

Pure//Accelerate 2016, will be live-streaming keynotes to the world on Monday, March 14 from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. PDT and Tuesday, March 15 from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. PDT.

Watch live as Blair Dore of Google, Raghu Raghuram of VMWare, Keith Bruce of Superbowl 50, Bill Schlough of the San Francisco Giants and Shark Tank’s very own Robert Herjavec share the keynote main stage with the next generation of enterprise storage technology. You’ll also hear from innovative Pure Storage customers like Intuit, Mercedes, Shutterfly, ServiceNow, Secure-24, The Boston Globe, Airware, Red Hawk, Casino and NY Presbyterian Hospital.

About Pure Storage

Pure Storage (NYSE: PSTG) accelerates possible, transforming businesses in ways previously unimagined. The company's disruptive, software-driven storage technology combined with a customer-friendly business model drives business and IT transformation for customers through dramatic increases in performance and efficiency at lower costs. Pure Storage FlashArray//m is simpler, faster and more elegant than any other technology in the datacenter. FlashArray //m is ideal for the move toward big data and for performance-intensive workloads such as cloud computing, database systems, desktop virtualization, real-time analytics and server virtualization. With Pure's industry leading Satmetrix-certified NPS score of 79, Pure customers are some of the happiest in the world, and include large and mid-size organizations across a range of industries: cloud-based software and service providers, consumer web, education, energy, financial services, governments, healthcare, manufacturing, media, retail and telecommunications. With Pure Storage, companies push the boundaries of what's possible to become faster, smarter and more innovative.

 

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Pure Storage, Pure 1, Evergreen, FlashBlade, Elasticity and the “P” logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Pure Storage, Inc. All other trademarks or names referenced in this document are the property of their respective owners.

Forward-Looking Statements

This release contains forward-looking statements including, among other things, statements regarding the expected performance and benefits of Pure Storage's product offerings. The words "believe," "may," "will," "plan," "expect," and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties, and assumptions. If the risks materialize or assumptions prove incorrect, actual results could differ materially from the results implied by these forward-looking statements. Risks include, but are not limited to, risks described in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), including future reports that we may file with the SEC from time to time, which could cause actual results to vary from expectations. Pure Storage assumes no obligation to, and does not currently intend to, update any such forward-looking statements after the date of this release.

Any unreleased products, features, or functions referenced in this release, our website or other press releases or public statements that are not currently available are subject to change at Pure Storage's discretion and may not be delivered as planned or at all. Customers who purchase Pure Storage's product offerings should make their purchase decisions based upon products, features and functions that are currently available.

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Press Contact

Joseph Beare

Pure Storage

jbeare@purestorage.com

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