As much as I wish I could, I’m not going to go into detail on how flash is implemented in HC3 because, frankly, the I/O heat mapping we use to move data between flash SDD and spinning HDD tiers is highly intelligent and probably more complex than what I can fit in a reasonable blog post. However, I will tell you why the way we implement flash is the right way and how we are able to offer it in an affordable way.
(Don’t worry, you can read about how our flash is implemented in detail in our Theory of Operations by clicking here.)
First, we are implementing flash into the simplicity of our cluster-wide storage pool so that the tasks of deploying a cluster, a cluster node, or creating a VM are just as simple as always. The real difference you will notice will be the performance improvement. You will see the benefits of our flash storage even if you didn’t know it was there. Our storage architecture already provided the benefit of direct block access to physical storage from each VM without inefficient protocol and our flash implementation uses this same architecture.
Second, we are not implementing flash storage as a cache like other solutions. Many solutions required flash as a storage cache to make up for the deficiencies of their inefficient storage architectures and I/O pathing. With HC3, flash is implemented as a storage tier within the storage pool and adds to the overall storage capacity. We created our own enhanced, automated tiering technology to manage the data across both SSD and HDD tiers to retain the simplicity of the storage pool with the high performance of flash for the hottest blocks.
Finally, we are implementing flash with the most affordable high performing SSD hardware we can find in our already affordable HC3 cluster nodes. Our focus on the SMB market makes us hypersensitive to the budget needs of small and midsize datacenters and it is our commitment to provide the best products possible for your budgets. This focus on SMB is why we are not just slapping together solutions from multiple vendors into a chassis and calling it hyperconvergence but instead we have developed our own operating system, our own storage system, and our own management interface because small datacenters deserve solutions designed specifically for their needs.
Hopefully, I have helped you understand just how we are able to announce our HC1150 cluster starting at $24,500* for 3 nodes, delivering world class hyperconvergence with the simplicity of single server management and the high performance of hybrid flash storage. It wasn’t easy but we believe in doing it the right way for SMB.
Click here for the official press release.
*After discounts from qualified partners.