Flash Memory has transformed the data center industry and it will continue to do so. 2013 saw an entire change of scenery in the information technology arena with previously unheard words such as Hadoop, Big Data, Twitter, ExaBytes and PetaBytes becoming common vocabulary. Did you know that 72 hours of video gets added to YouTube every minute and Facebook sees 30 billion pieces of data each month? The pressure on increasing data center capacity and scale is increasing enormously with leading players like Microsoft declaring that they have 1 million servers today.
SSD's (Solid State Drives) are the smart way to go and have been widely adopted for implementation of storage architectures where the magnitude of scale is a primary concern. A proof of concept done by a leading company to demonstrate the benefits of using SSD resulted in the following statistics:
- A standard server at 100% CPU when scaled to having 8 drives, the performance output for running 10 concurrent searches for 40 byte records was consistent regardless of the number of drives added. In contrast, using a Scale In server at 1%CPU resulted in 2X performance as the number of drives reached 8 and the power utilization was 39% less than the previous case.
Even today, SSD architectures are widely used in many data centers, especially with the growing popularity of the cloud. Storage performance at the right price is what the market is hungry for and all-flash storage arrays seems to fit the niche nicely. What with prices dropping significantly so as to bring the price performance ratio to a desirable one, the use of flash storage for hosting seems to be the option that many data center experts are recommending.
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