With the rise of cloud computing and the advent of virtualization, the pressure on storage systems has never been greater. Throw in a healthy mix of Big Data applications in 2013, and it quickly becomes apparent that most existing storage systems will soon not be up to the task.
For that reason, the folks at Hewlett-Packard are making the case that when it comes to building next-generation cloud computing platforms, the conversation should start with building modern shared storage systems.
According to David Scott, senior vice president and general manager for HP Storage, as the amount of data that needs to be managed continues to explode, IT organizations will be what HP refers to as “polymorphic storage systems” capable of supporting diverse file, block and object data types. Without that capability, the cost of storage in the age of multitenant application workloads will simply be cost-prohibitive both from an acquisition and cost of management perspective, says Scott.
The good news is that Flash memory and solid-state disk drives (SSDs) will meet the performance requirements of these workloads. But Scott warns that not all storage systems that have incorporated Flash memory are created equal. Scott says HP in contrast to other storage vendors uses SSD drives that do not require long rebuild times or have write-back caches that could potentially lose data.
Scott says most storage systems are based on designs that are over 25 years old that largely attached dedicated storage resources to specific applications. Cloud computing creates a critical need for a more modern approach to storage management to deal with the now unpredictable nature of application workloads, which means that as far as storage goes in the age of the cloud, IT organizations are going to need to expect the unexpected.