That’s one of the wordier titles I’ve used for a blog post in recent times, but I think it captures the essence of Pure Storage‘s recent announcements. Firstly, I’m notoriously poor at covering product announcements, so if you want a really good insight into what is going on, check out Dave Henry’s post here. There were three key announcements made today:
- Evergreen Storage; and
- Pure1 Cloud-Based Management and Support.
Besides having some slightly weird spelling, the FlashArray//m (mini because it fits in 3RU and modular because, well, you can swap modules in it) is Pure’s next-generation storage appliance. Here’s a picture.
There are three models, the //m20, //m50, and //m70. Each of these has various capabilities. I’ve included an overview from the datasheet, but note that this is subject to change before GA of the tin.
The key takeaway for me is that, after some time using other people’s designs, this is Pure’s crack at using their own hardware design, and it will be interesting to see how this plays out over the expected life of the gear.
In the olden days, when I was a storage customer, I would have been pretty excited about a program like Evergreen Storage. Far too often I found myself purchasing storage only to have the latest version released a month later, sometimes before the previous generation had hit the loading dock. I was rarely given a heads up from the vendor that something new was coming, and often had the feeling I was just using up their old stock. Pure don’t want you to have that feeling with them. Instead, for as long as the array is under maintenance, Pure will help customers upgrade the controllers, storage, and software in a non-disruptive fashion. The impression I got was that these arrays would keep on keeping on for around 7 – 10 years, with the modular design enabling easy upgrades of key technologies as well as capacity.
Pure1 Cloud-Based Management and Support
I’ve never been a Pure Storage customer, so I can’t comment as to how easy or difficult it currently is to get support. Nonetheless, I imagine the Pure1 announcement might be a bit exciting for the average punter slogging through storage ops. Basically, Pure1 gets you in touch with improved analytics and management of your storage infrastructure, all of which can be performed via a web browser. And, if you’re so inclined, you can turn on a call home feature and have Pure collect info from your arrays every 30 seconds. This provides both the customer and Pure with a wealth of information to make decisions about performance, resilience and upgrades. You can get the datasheet here.
I like Pure Storage. I was lucky enough to visit them during Storage Field Day 6 and was impressed by their clarity of vision and different approach to flash storage architecture. I like the look of the new hardware, although the proof will be in field performance. The Evergreen Storage announcement is fantastic from the customer’s perspective, although I’ll be interested to see just how long they can keep something like that going.