Storage Visions Enable Storage Solutions

At the 2018 Storage Visions Conference in Santa Clara, CA several sessions and keynotes addressed the conference theme of thriving in the Data Apocalypse. With new data generation by IoT, autonomous vehicles, AI and many other applications enabled by 5G networking and new processing approaches, digital storage and memory will play increasing roles in enabling mission critical data analysis and long-term data retention.

Radoslav Danilak, CEO of Tachyum spoke about how it’s new hyperscale AI processing technology can enable QLC flash memory to be a practical data storage option for the data center. This is enabled by various ways to reduce cell wear (said to be a 100X increase), including compression, in-line deduplication, reduced writes for a storage array and no overhead snapshots and clones. By enabling single copy storage arrays greater storage efficiency and further wear reduction is possible. The Prodigy Universal Processor/AI chip is said to outperform CPUs, GPUs and TPUs and enable QLC flash for the data center.

Andy Steinbach, Founder and CEO of start-up, Paradigm Shift AI, spoke about how machine learning worked with several applications and ultimately the requirements for DRAM, SSDs and HDDs to support the vast amount of training data required for these applications.

Adam Roberts, Engineering Fellow at WD and representing the RISC-V Foundation discussed how compute and storage innovations combine to Provide a Pathway to Composable Architecture. With data increasingly shared and pooled by multiple applications, old approaches that kept data captive to a single application won’t work. The answer in this talk is a shared pool of disaggregated compute and storage resources that can be composed and made available upon demand. The increasing storage demands will drive bandwidth requirements in enclosures as well as computing devices designed for particular applications. He discussed a common advanced fabric that can serve SSDs and HDDs.

RISC-V One Storage Fabric for All Storage Tom Coughlin from Storage Visions Conference

Jim Pappas of Intel and Chair of the SNIA SSSI gave a talk on Persistent Memories. He showed the SNIA activities on PM, from software (programming) to NVDIMMs to remote persistent memory. Regarding the latter, RPM is the basis for a relationship between the Open Fabric Alliance (OFA) and SNIA. The PM programming work at SNIA will lead us from traditional storage, to storage based upon PM middleware, then to PM libraries that enable direct PM access from the library and with languages and software build around PM applications to either file system or direct access to persistent memory, as shown below.

SNIA SSSI Persistent Memory Approaches Tom Coughlin from Storage Visions Conference

Karim Kaddeche, from L2 Drive, spoke about using HDDs under vacuum and with new actuators to actively control flying height without an air bearing, as the answer to continuing HDD areal density (and thus storage capacity) growth. According to Karim, using a vacuum rather than He in a hermetically sealed HDD will further reduce flutter, gas borne contamination and allow reducing or elminatating the carbon overcoats on the heads and disk and the lubricant on the disk, providing lower magnetic spacing between the recording/writing head and the disk media. 50 TB drives or higher would be enabled by this technology.

Manish Muthal, VP at Xilinx and Pankaj Mehra, VP at Samsung Electronics gave a talk on computational storage platforms. Performance bottlenecks and power implications of moving data back and forth from a compute node are driving the need for new approaches that bring compute to the data. They explored various ways that this can be done with various sizes of data being acted upon. One idea that stood out was an adaptive storage endpoint that included its own processing capability. This is what led to Samsung’s recently announced SmartSSD with a Xilinx FPGA with an ARM core.

Moving Compute to Storage, Xilinx and Samsung Tom Coughlin from Storage Visions Conference

Michelle Munson from Eluv.io discussed a new, less complex, model for content delivery, using what Eluv.io called a content fabric. This concept applies content networking as a software overlay via a new decentralized, distributed and programable content platform in a single stack and using blockchain technology to establish trust in an untrustworthy network and using just-in-time rendering of content to all end formats from the source, without any duplication.

Eluv.io's Content Fabric Tom Coughlin from Storage Visions Conference

Aparavi was discussing the need to provide multi-cloud data management with a software appliance providing storage and cloud mobility, no cloud or software lock-in, with intelligent management and no up-front costs.

Aparavi's Multicloud Solution Tom Coughlin from Storage Visions Conference

FileShadow was showing a high-performance access to on-line data and local data using software that collects users most important files into a single cloud vault and examines files to add additional searchable metadata as well as extract human generated metadata and also journal all revisions as they occur to protect, rather than replace the last version. Furthermore all of this metadata is searchable using a text search engine to find files in seconds and download them in seconds as well. Note that FileShadow has current cloud relationships with IBM Cloud and Wasabi as well as NAS devices from Drobo.

FileShadow's Metadata Acceleration Tom Coughlin from Storage Visions Conference

Robert Thibadeau, head of the Drive Trust Alliance spoke about security and privacy. He referenced his recent book on “How to Get Your Privacy Back.” He pointed out that using self-encrypting drives (whether SSDs or HDDs) for every application, provides the best security for data at rest.

Use of Self-Encrypting SSDs and HDDs Tom Coughlin from Storage

The 2018 Storage Visions Conference gave insights on storage solutions that can effectively deal with the potential Data Apocalypse that new applications that AI, IoT, 5G and professional video are creating. If you are interested to find out more about what was discussed check out www.storagevisions.com.