Pure Storage – “Architecture Matters”

I received my Xtremio Upgrade Survival Kit from Pure Storage last week and wanted to just provide a little of commentary on it. I know it’s “old news” now, but it’s been on my mind for a while and the gift pack prompted me to burst into print.


Firstly, it was interesting to see the blogosphere light up when news broke that the upgrade from 2.4 to 3 was destructive. You can read a few of the posts from Nigel here, Chris here and Enrico here. Chad tried to defend the position with a typically insightful (and when you’re a VP with the vendor you hope it’s insightful) post that defended a number of decisions that got them to that point and was basically a mea culpa combined with a broader discussion around architecture. The vendors didn’t miss their chance either, with Vaughn having his say here and an interesting post by Calvin that you can read here.

But the post that I think put everything in perspective was Stephen’s. Yes, it’s all technically a bit of a mess. But we’ve been conditioned for so long to read between the lines of vendor glossies and not believe that anything is ever really non-disruptive. Every NDU carries a risk that something will go pear-shaped, and we prepare for it. Most people have had an upgrade go wrong before, particularly if your job has been enterprise storage field upgrades for the last 5 – 10 years. It’s never pretty, it’s never fun, but nowadays we’re generally prepared for it.

While I enjoy the generally ballsy marketing from Pure Storage for calling out EMC on this problem, I think that ultimately we (partners, customers) are probably all not that fussed about it really. Not that I think it’s good that we’re still having these problems. Architecture does matter. But sometimes things get stuffed up.

As an aside though, how good would it be if you worked in an environment where all you needed to do was fill out a paper slip to do a change?