UASP has a lot of promise, bringing SCSI performance and features to the ever-expanding world of USB storage devices. But support has been haphazard, especially for Mac OS X and Linux, and this limits its impact. It would be nice if storage vendors could work with operating system developers to better support this storage protocol.
This old-fashioned, predictable storage I/O path was deterministic and decipherable: The server, the switch, and the array all had enough information to do their jobs effectively and efficiently.
Storage protocols continue to mimic direct attached storage, with the concepts of block and file at its core. No amount of virtualization, and no new protocol, will fix this – we need a storage revolution.
If WRITE_SAME can be a semaphore for thin un-provisioning, what about TRIM? It sounds like a perfect fit, and has wider implementation to boot! Let’s take a deeper look.
One of the sticky wickets that holds back thin provisioning is the need to communicate when capacity is no longer needed. Enterprise storage arrays can reclaim zeroed pages, but writing all those zeros can really fill up an I/O queue. This is where WRITE_SAME comes into the picture.
Why does network-attached storage (NAS) have such a poor reputation? This isn’t what the vendors want to be talking about, but some recent product announcements and discussions led to this thought. IT folks as a whole don’t trust NAS for real work, and 20 years of effort from big names like Sun, Microsoft, NetApp, IBM, and the rest hasn’t changed that.
Although it’s rare in the PC world, multipath I/O is not new in enterprise IT. I’ve been juggling paths to storage and networks as long as I’ve been a systems administrator, and that’s a bit longer than I care to admit. But the proliferation of technologies has made it difficult to understand path management. What’s the difference between “dual active” and “active/active”? Is “active/passive” really that bad?
Like clockwork, VMware has cranked out another update to their flagship enterprise product, ESX 3.5. The last update came out in early November, 2008, and included some major new functionality. What’s in store this time to intrigue storage folks? Not much. For more information on earlier updates, see my articles: Storage Fixes in VMware ESX […]
Update: Check out the latest multi-vendor iSCSI post! I usually don’t write about other peoples’ articles on this blog, preferring to stick to my own independent work. But this time I’m making an exception. If you use or are interested in VMware ESX 3.x and iSCSI, you simply must go read Chad Sakac’s post on the […]
Looking around at the enterprise storage landscape, it is plain that certain archetypes rule: Monolithic enterprise arrays, dual-controller modular arrays, standard-sized hard disk units, NAS servers, tape libraries. Are these really the optimal designs for storage in our modern open systems world? On the contrary, I suggest that the enterprise storage world we know was […]