Storage Field Day 10 Preview: Pure Storage

Storage Field Day 10 Preview: Pure Storage

Chris EvansAll-Flash Storage, Pure Storage, Tech Field Day

This is one of a series of posts discussing the presenters at Storage Field Day 10, occurring 25th-27th May 2016 in Silicon Valley, at which I am an attending delegate.  See links at the end of this post to other presenting vendors.  Details of the event can be found on the Storage Field Day 10 page at and on the dedicated events page on this site at Storage Field Day 10.

Pure Storage has been at the forefront of the rise of the all-flash array, having raised a huge $470m over six rounds of funding and floating on the New York Stock Exchange in October 2015.  The company has two main product lines; FlashArray, a dual-controller architecture for block-based workloads and FlashBlade, a scale-out file and object storage platform based on a custom controller and NAND-flash design.  Putting the products aside for a moment, Pure has been an interesting company as they have built both a set of products and a culture/ethos around the use of flash rather than spinning media as the future of persistent storage.  The Pure brand forms a huge part of the success of the company, beating the likes of EMC at their own game with strong and consistent messaging rather than over the top hyperbole.

Let’s look at the products; FlashArray//m now comes in four models (//m10, //m20, //m50 and //m70) ranging from 25+TB to 400+TB and 100,000 to 300,000 IOPS (32K).  The FlashArray systems include data services (compression/dedupe/thin provisioning) as well as data protection (RAID-3D and replication).  FlashBlade isn’t currently available, however a single 4U chassis can accommodate up to 15 scale-out blades, each with either 8TB or 52TB of capacity, with initial support for NFS and S3 protocols.

Customer Value

It’s probably fair to say that Pure’s flash products aren’t the most radical available.  There are faster flash arrays; there are arrays with larger capacities and there are scale-out rather than scale-up block-based options available elsewhere.  However, the success of enterprise storage comes from much more than product specifications alone.  In that respect, Pure has implemented features like Pure1 (SaaS management) and Evergreen Storage (improved buying and replacement process) that offer end users real opportunities to reduce their TCO.

It’s all About the Tech

OK, so taking into consideration all of the above, we have to remember that Storage Field Day is part of the Tech Field Day series and the word “tech” is important here.  As a result, we should be expecting to see a presentation about the newly announced FlashBlade.  I was lucky to be invited to Pure//Accelerate earlier this year and spend time with other bloggers/influencers and the development team talking about some of the underlying philosophies for the development of FlashBlade.  From the information provided to us, the session at SFD10 promises to be very interesting indeed.  Of course I have no prior knowledge, so Pure could choose to present something totally different, however as a returning presenter, FlashBlade is the new product, so it makes the most sense to be front and centre next week.

Disclaimer:  I was personally invited to attend Storage Field Day 10, with the event teams covering my travel and accommodation costs.  However I was not compensated for my time.  I am not required to blog on any content; blog posts are not edited or reviewed by the presenters or the respective companies prior to publication.  

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