SSD Firm Takes New Approach to Tackling I/O Bottlenecks - EnterpriseStorageForum.com
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SSD Firm Takes New Approach to Tackling I/O Bottlenecks

When many enterprises think of storage, it's all too often an obstacle. What does Kaminario have to offer?

For starters, the young SSD firm touts a robust balance between performance and availability.

"There have been enormous advances in the speed of thinks like networks, memory and CPUs, but with mechanical drives, applications cannot retrieve data as fast as they can process it," said Gareth Taube, Kaminario's vice president of marketing. "To change the dynamics of application performance requires a new storage architecture based around solid state components and not rotating mechanical disks."

Kaminario's signature product is the K2, a storage appliance rooted in the Kaminario SPEAR Storage Operating System, which the firm told Enterprise Storage Forum is geared toward time-sensitive and I/O-intensive critical business applications that standard storage solutions cannot support.

In response, Kaminario is reinventing the architecture of enterprise storage to highlight the role of solid-state components ahead of mechanical parts, a switch the firm said should ease the burden of use.

"There is still a lot of confusion with customers about the differences among various SSD technologies (e.g., Flash or DRAM) and their benefits," Taube said. "Over time, we have seen a great deal of traction in the market as people learn more about the benefits of various SSD storage technologies and demand more enterprise capabilities (e.g., high availability, scalability, ease of use and higher ROI) from those solutions."

Kaminario's signature K2 DRAM storage appliance promises zippy retrieval and low latency as well as fewer bottlenecks with its distributed "Scale-Out Performance Architecture" (SPEAR) technology that balances the data load across a grid of blade controllers.

"SPEAR takes off-the-shelf blade servers and turns them into an automated block-level storage device that has built-in high availability, is highly automated, and easy to install," Taube said.

Kaminario was formed in 2008 by veterans from EMC who envisioned a better way to tackle the challenges of storage access and application availability by converting off-the-shelf servers into block-level storage.

"Lengthy risk and trading analysis, long billing cycles, slow e-commerce websites, inefficient customer service queries, and IT's inability to meet SLAs are common scenarios which challenge businesses today," according to the company. "In over 80 percent of the cases, these performance challenges are the result of storage I/O bottlenecks."

By the specs, the firm's high-end offering boasts 1.6 million IOPS and a transfer rate up to 16 Gbps. Kaminario touts its K2 product as the "first enterprise-grade ultra high performance data appliance to deliver millions of IOPS and boost crucial applications without compromising on high availability."

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