September 30, 2014

A Fairy Tale of Two Storage Protocols

This is a tale of two great kingdoms in Seattle...

It’s clear how this fairy tale ends. So many companies are using “S3 plus” as their standard interface, and even inside their solutions, that it’s safe to say it’s won the cloud storage API battle. But S3 isn’t a finalized spec – the industry will extend and improve it over the coming years. Soon we’ll have a cloud storage standard based on S3, just like we have a LAN file services standard based on CIFS.

The Rack Endgame: Converged Infrastructure and Disaggregation

Cisco's new UCS M-Series puts two CPU/memory "complexes" on a cartridge, with all I/O disaggregated and supported on the back end over PCIe

As I’ve written about what I’m calling the “Rack Endgame”, the specter of converged infrastructure hasn’t been far from my thoughts. As others have pointed out, disaggregation of servers, networks, and storage doesn’t require a rack-sized stack; it can exist in a rack-mountable chassis and is already on sale!

Selling Fashion: My Thoughts on the Apple Watch, Part 4

Clearly Apple has already learned many lessons from fashion boutiques, and their Stores are legendary in the retail industry

This is the fourth in my series on the Apple Watch. Read the rest: Transformative Success – My Thoughts on the Apple Watch Hodgepodge: My Thoughts on the Apple Watch, Part 2 The Fashion Function: My Thoughts on the Apple Watch, Part 3 The Apple Watch we saw this week is not a transformative product. [...]

The Rack Endgame: Open Compute Project

SAfa

On reading my thoughts about the evolution of enterprise storage, many pointed out that this looks an awful lot like the Facebook-led Open Compute Project (OCP). This is entirely intentional. But OCP is simply one expression of this new architecture, and perhaps not the best one for the enterprise.

The Fashion Function: My Thoughts on the Apple Watch, Part 3

The physical design of the Apple Watch is disappointing. It's a bland blob relying on straps for "life".

Apple previewed their 2015 Apple Watch this week, and I’m not entirely convinced that they have a hit on their hands. Rather than a transformative punch, Apple showed an unfocused product that can’t figure out just what it’s supposed to be. The software side can improve dramatically before launch, but what about the physical design?

Cisco’s Trojan Horse

Cisco's UCS C3160 is a "storage server" for the all-Cisco rack

Industry watchers like me have long wondered when Cisco will transform itself into a full-line IT infrastructure vendor. This strategy was tipped in 2009 as Cisco barged into the server market with UCS. But one leg of the stool is still missing: Storage remains the province of Cisco partners like EMC and NetApp.

Hodgepodge: My Thoughts on the Apple Watch, Part 2

Just look at this home screen! What exactly is the Apple Watch designed to do? Everything?!?

The current Apple Watch doesn’t look that great. Apple previewed an unfocused product that needs quite a bit more development to be “insanely great.” Perhaps the software situation will improve by launch time, with Apple figuring out just what this thing is supposed to be and focusing on that. But it’s doubtful that the physical design will be altered much.

Transformative Success – My Thoughts on the Apple Watch, Part 1

iPads are everywhere, transforming life for ordinary people

Although it won’t be available for purchase for months, Apple just announced the new standard in smart watches and wearable computers. It’s as far ahead of the status quo as the iPhone was from the “smart” phone pack on its introduction back in 2007. But as it stands, the Apple Watch doesn’t transform the market: Although it will undoubtedly capture most of the smart watch market, this isn’t yet a transformative product for modern society like the iPhone or iPad.

Networking Field Day 8

I can't really explain this photo. Networking Field Day just gets crazy sometimes...

If you’re interested in networking, I highly recommend tuning in to the video stream live this week for Networking Field Day 8! You’ll see 9 different networking companies present their technology, products, and people to an international Tech Field Day delegate panel, and you can participate online through Twitter.

The Rack Endgame: A New Storage Architecture For the Data Center

Top of rack flash, bottom of rack capacity, and software gluing everything together!

Top-of-rack flash and bottom-of-rack disk makes a ton of sense in a world of virtualized, distributed storage. It fits with enterprise paradigms yet delivers real architectural change that could “move the needle” in a way that no centralized shared storage system ever will. SAN and NAS aren’t going away immediately, but this new storage architecture will be an attractive next-generation direction!