The best way to think of X2 as the 2nd generation of XtremIO – it takes the great foundation of the strengths of XtremIO and builds on them.
The core architecture of keeping all the metadata in memory, all the time, and architecting that as a distributed system that is tightly coupled scale-out cluster (see Understanding Storage architectures). That has been, and continues to be the essence of what customers love about XtremIO – fantastic consistent performance, and data services that are global, and always on.
What hasn’t changed = the core strengths of XtremIO.
- XtremIO continues to be the platform and stack to beat when it comes to inline data reduction and incredible copy services – because of the distributed in-memory
- XtremIO continues to be one of the simplest external storage array platforms to design and manage, because it’s scaling model is simple, it’s behaviors so linear, so constant.
What has improved are the points of where XtremIO could get better:
- Scale up, and out = multi-dimensional scaling model. This gives customers a fundamentally better economic model than we were able to do before.
- Improved data services – a 25% improvement in data reduction rates – and a peek at some fascinating things coming around remote replication.
- Simplifying the hardware stack. People that know XtremIO know that the battery backup unit in each appliance and relatively complex cabling was an unnecessary complication.
- Simpler management in general.
As I’m here at VMworld 2017, and talk to a lot of customers – it’s worth making a “step back and see the forest for the trees” comment.
The Dell Technologies position (therefore the shared position of Dell EMC and VMware) on what is happening in the storage world is that the majority of x86 workloads are ready to run on SDS like ScaleIO and vSAN, and their HCI system instantiations (VxRail, VxRack).
At the same time, there are workloads that will remain on external storage arrays for the foreseeable future: ones that have very specific data services needs, ones that have very specific capacity density needs that outstrip industry-standard x86 hardware designs, ones that have performance latency jitter requirements that exceed what you can get with loosely coupled distributed systems. These are important, but exceptional cases.
- XtremIO has EXCEPTIONAL copy data services and data reduction services, and now an amazing new remote replication capability.
- XtremIO has EXCEPTIONAL of the most linear low-latency behaviors with it’s tightly coupled architecture and shared memory model.
- XtremIO now has EXCEPTIONAL multi-dimensional scaling behavior – both in performance and capacity densities.
These are amongst the sustained sweet spots for the External Storage array market – and why we’re really excited about this new release!
One other element of food for thought. Of the 350,000 vSphere customers, about 20,000 or so of them are using SDS and HCI in some form – if you look across the HCI/SDS ecosystems (and where vSAN DIY and VxRail lead the way).
Now expand your perspective to contemplate the whole universe of things that are not vSphere.
While there’s no question that there is huge growth in SDS/HCI – it’s simply no a zero-sum game. The place for external storage systems are cases where either specific data services, or extreme capacity/performance density that exceeds industry standard hardware, or the very tight latency jitter characteristics of tightly coupled systems. External Storage arrays are here for the long term, and XtremIO X2 is a great update to a key player in that universe!
Congrats to the whole XtremIO team!
Now – for more details – please check out Itzik Reich (XtremIO CTO and blogger extraordinare) here, and if you want more of my thoughts, read on past the break!