Tuesday, 05 May 2020 14:01

Dell EMC PowerStore minimises storage admin workload


Dell EMC has unveiled PowerStore, its new midrange storage platform.

Dell EMC PowerStore is the first all-new storage product to come from the company since Dell Technologies was formed by the 2016 merger of Dell and EMC.

It brings the capabilities of the enterprise-oriented PowerMax family – and more – to the midrange, Dell Technologies APJ senior regional director, modern data centre Glenn McPherson told iTWire.

There are currently two major issues affecting storage, he said. Data is being "generated all over the place" and especially at the edge, which currently accounts for around 10% if data but this is expected to grow to 75% by 2023. This data needs to be harnessed, especially for purposes such as digital engagement.

Secondly, storage needs to be simple, automated and intelligent.

This new architecture addresses both of these issues, said Dell Technologies ANZ senior director of technology Adrian Iannessa.

Suitable for business-critical workloads, it handles block, file, container and other types of storage for customers from small businesses to large enterprises.

It uses the latest technologies such as end-to-end NVMe and storage class memory as persistent storage to deliver up to seven times the IOPS of comparable products with one third the latency.

Always-on deduplication and compression gives guaranteed 4:1 data reduction.

Built-in machine learning takes care of normally labour-intensive processes such as volume placement, load balancing and issue resolution, while application development and deployment times are slashed thanks to VMware integration and support for management and orchestration frameworks including Kubernetes, Ansible and VMware vRealize Orchestrator.

PowerStore can be scaled out to a maximum of eight nodes, and scaled up to as much as 3PB of storage per node. Storage and performance upgrades are independent of each other. These "anytime upgrades" can be chosen without penalty, and "it's designed for the future," according to McPherson.

Furthermore, PowerStore includes built-in tools for migrating data from other Dell EMC platforms, while VMware's vMotion can be used for migration from other vendors' storage.

PowerStore can be directly connected to major public clouds including AWS, Azure and Google Cloud via Dell EMC Cloud Storage Services.

"As organisations modernise their IT infrastructure, they must embrace technology that streamlines operations, eliminates complexity and can scale in the face of exponential data growth," said IDC infrastructure systems, platforms and technologies group research vice president Eric Burgener.

"By developing Dell EMC PowerStore through an infrastructure-centric lens, the company has created a platform that can tackle today’s IT challenges while being flexible and scalable enough to meet future IT needs."

The arrays run the new container-based PowerStore OS, which will allow Dell EMC to add features quickly and easily, Iannessa said.

The AppsOn feature incorporates VMware ESXi Hypervisor 8, allowing VMware virtualised workloads and applications to run directly on the array. This ability is especially important for edge deployments, McPherson said, for example to allow analytics or security applications to run at the point of collection.

"AppsOn is an absolute differentiator," he said.

PowerStore is offered under three types of commercial arrangement.

"Pay as you grow" is the traditional upfront purchase model, optionally supported by Dell Financial Services.

Dell Technologies On Demand is a "pay as you use" model, allowing customers to commit to and pay for a certain amount of storage, but the arrays are delivered with additional capacity which Dell only charges for when it is used.

Finally, there's the now-familiar storage as a service model.

"Customers tell us a main obstacle keeping them from achieving their digital transformation initiatives is the constant tug-of-war between supporting the ever-increasing number of workloads – from traditional IT applications to data analytics – and the reality of cost constraints, limitations and complexity of their existing IT infrastructure." said Dell Technologies president and general manager for storage Dan Inbar.

"Dell EMC PowerStore blends automation, next generation technology, and a novel software architecture to deliver infrastructure that helps organisations address these needs."

Dell PowerStore is available immediately, and the company has already taken orders from selected customers.

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Stephen Withers

Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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