Kaminario today announced DataProtect™ which adds enterprise high-availability and data protection capabilities to our K2 line of all-solid-state SAN storage. The details are published on our Website including a highlight video, but I wanted to take a moment to share my thoughts about why the news is significant.
An architecture purpose-built for SSDs From its earliest days, Kaminario has believed that to get the most from solid-state media, you need a storage architecture purpose-built for SSDs. This notion applies to data reliability capabilities such as high availability (HA) and data protection as well as performance. When your applications are screamingly fast, your HA and data protection operations, including snapshots and replication, need to be able to keep up. The ideal SSD architecture should also be fully automated and support non-disruptive operations, so when there is a failure, your data is safe and accessible.
Performance is not enough While many organizations purchase SSDs for performance, more and more are saying that performance is not enough. You’ve got to be fast, but you have to be safe. Speed is absolutely important, but there is no question customers are making data reliability capabilities a growing purchase-decision factor. Concurrently, innovation around data reliability is accelerating faster than innovation around SSD performance, in my opinion. It continues today with DataProtect. Kaminario is raising the data reliability bar within all solid-state storage and now offers customers the most comprehensive HA and data protection software stack available.
Today’s announcement is an indication as to what you will see from us moving forward. The intelligence built into SPEAR allows us to continue to expand HA and data protection benefits to make our storage fast, safe, easy, and cost effective. It may not happen this year or next, but eventually all solid-state media will be the standard for primary storage in enterprise data centers. So that is where our compass is pointed.
Leading the data reliability charge There is a lot of noise about HA and data protection in the market. The problem is that HA and data protection features lose some of their cachet if they slow down performance (or if they do not exist). When Kaminario talks about HA, we’re talking about N+1 hardware redundancy. During a failure, the K2 system automatically reconfigures itself and activates a spare node, then it resumes full operation nearly instantaneously (SPEAR also “phones home” to let an administrator know a failure has occurred). Then, while the system is running, the administrator can replace the failed node. Check out this cool video we made showing this process when we intentionally tried to take down a K2. The uniqueness of SPEAR design is that it maintains performances as it is going through the failover process. The system’s active components take over the data processing workload immediately. Other HA approaches have a delay in allocating the workload within the system while they are waiting for the redundant components to take over and can cut the performance in half. DataProtect also maintains performance during data protection operations as well. Those features include the following:
- RAID 10HD (hybrid distributed): Our RAID implementation allows data to be automatically striped and mirrored across multiple data nodes in Flash and DRAM in primary storage and Flash in backup storage.
- High-volume snapshots: Takes snapshots in milliseconds with no impact on production performance. You could take a snapshot every second if you wanted to — up to 8,000 of them in a single system. Watch our video on Snapshot performance for more details.
- Fast, asynchronous replication: Kaminario supports both host-based and array-based replication that delivers a recovery point objective of less than 15 seconds.
The Kaminario K2 with its unique SPEAR design and DataProtect software layer ensures that production performance is maintained during failures and data protection processes such as snapshots and replication. No other system on the market today has focused on enterprises’ need for high performance data reliability for SSD storage systems. The K2 is simply faster and safer.
External reaction industry-analyst reaction about DataProtect so far has been, encouraging. We made a concerted effort to prove that data reliability does not come at the expense of performance by showing real scenarios of the K2 in action.
According to Benjamin Woo, Program Vice President, Worldwide Storage Systems, IDC, “Kaminario has built an SSD SAN storage system with high availability and data protection specifically designed for the high speeds and volumes of SSD-based storage. Additionally, they offer the cost-effective flexibility to mix Flash and DRAM in a single system, allowing companies to realize the best price/performance for their mission-critical application environments.”
ESG Senior Analyst, Mark Peters states, “Kaminario K2 proven its high availability capabilities in ESG’s Lab Validation tests (despite induced failures, application workloads continued without interruption), but also the company has now announced DataProtect and taken its data reliability to an even higher level.”
Storage Switzerland published a review titled “Enterprise Solid State Can’t Go Down.” George Crump previewed DataProtect. “This is a significant upgrade for Kaminario. The high availability, the uniqueness of RAID 10HD and the addition of data protection services like snapshots and replication clearly move the Kaminario solution out of the niche performance market and into the primary storage market. The solution is now just as viable for accelerating a virtualized server infrastructure as it is for accelerating a high end Oracle or Oracle RAC databases.”
Takeaways We are at a point where SSD performance conversations must include high-end HA and data protection. Expect the industry, following Kaminario’s lead, to pivot and elevate data reliability in discussions like it has been for a long time in HDDs. Speed is headed toward being a commodity that all the good SSD vendors can provide. The question is at what risk to data reliability. Differentation is going to come from performance + HA and data protection across multiple SSD media types.
Let’s Tweet Hopefully, today’s DataProtect announcement spurs more discussion about data reliability and SSDs. I am looking forward to hearing more announcement reaction and its industry implications. I invite you to share your feedback either as a comment here or Tweet me @GarethTaube.