2015: The year storage was rocked to its foundations

Everything is changing and we don’t store the same 3d XPoint – the media technology of the year Storage year in review, part 1 The storage market in 2015 went through strategic foundation-shaking turmoil as the external shared disk array storage playbook was torn to shreds. It was a bewildering year, with rampaging and revolutionary activity at all levels of the industry. It’s best looked at from the ground up, starting with the technology vision, moving on to raw media, and then systems (arrays), applications such as Big Data, and finally suppliers. We look at technology visions and galloping media development here. Part two of this review of storage events in 2015 will cover systems, applications and suppliers. Technology visions There were six technology visions that exercised the industry’s mental sinews in 2015. First, the all-flash data centre idea has definitely taken off as a vision that could be achieved. Pioneered by troubled Violin Memory it has been expanded on by Kaminario and HDS, and is related to the flash and trash concept. Primary data is stored in flash with the rest being held in cheap and deep storage. When that cheap and deep is in the cloud you have an all-flash, on-premises data centre. When some/all of it is held in less-expensive flash, think 3D QLC (4 bits/cell or quad level cell), with the rest in the cloud, then you have an all-flash data centre too. A second technology theme of the year has been a strengthening conviction that storage should be located as close to servers as possible. This is an assault on network data access latency, paralleling the flash-based assault on disk drive data access latency due to head seek time, etc. The server-storage closeness concept has given rise to virtual SANs, hyper-converged industry appliances (HCIAs) […]