Welcome!

Containers Expo Blog Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Derek Weeks, Automic Blog, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo

Containers Expo Blog: Article

New Changes in Persistent Memory | @CloudExpo #Cloud #Storage

How Persistent Memory technologies will revolutionize compute as we know it

Incumbent storage vendors such as EMC, Netapp, and Nutanix have built their rich code base on the block layer. This means that the only viable option to use Persistent Memory as a storage tier is to wrap it up with an abstraction layer that will present it as a block device.

As a veteran researcher, I'm always interested in brand-new approaches for doing things. One great example is the new NVM programming model (NPM) proposed by SNIA. The new NPM approach took a big step forward this week, as version 1.0 of the associated NVM library (NVML) was released.

For the few people who understood this previous paragraph - congratulations on the major milestone. If you haven't really understood it, however, don't go away. I'll start from the beginning...

Hardware Background
New families of storage media and device types have been introduced and announced recently. These persistent memory (PM) technologies have amazing hardware properties, and there seems to be a growing consensus that they are going to revolutionize compute as we know it.

The billion-dollar question then is which software approach to choose in order to leverage this unique PM hardware.

Software Approach Survey
There are three main software approaches for using PM. This is not a matter of right or wrong, as there are tradeoffs. For the sake of clarity, I numbered these approaches I, II and III. This should help us stay at the technical, not the marketing, level.

Figure 1 illustrates that the key parameter for classifying software approaches is the amount of re-used versus re-written software. Approach I is tuned for highest software reuse. Approach II rewrites system software, but leaves the application untouched. Approach III rewrites all layers and moves the application to a new programming model.

Figure 1: The different software approaches for leveraging PM

Approaches I and II have the benefit of supporting applications "out of the box" with no modification. But Approach II requires additional development work from the system software vendor - work that has to be justified by extra performance. Figure 2 shows that the commonly adopted FIO benchmark was able to achieve 2-3 orders of magnitude better throughput and latency just by switching the software approach. Moving from Approach I (ZFS or XFS on NVDIMMs) to Approach II (Plexistor SDM) has brought tremendous value.

Further comparing the three approaches, performance, software reuse, and other technical properties are summarized in Figure 3. Most properties are self-explanatory, but two are worth elaborating on: "Data services model" and "$/GB". IT administrators use data services to comply with organizational requirements (e.g., use the storage array snapshot to create a backup). Approaches I and II follow the same model, while Approach III moves a lot of that responsibility to the application developer.

The second property "$/GB" is mainly a function of supporting multiple tiers and being able to automatically move data between them according to usage patterns. This is important because PM cost per capacity unit ($/GB) is high. PM cost is expected to drop with volume and time, but it will not catch up with SSD and HDD for many years. Auto-tiering is a vendor dependent feature. Sticking to the examples used in Figure 2: ZFS supports it, XFS and XFS-DAX do not, and Plexistor SDM does.

Now that we've established a clean technical background, let's apply it back to the market.

Mapping Industry Efforts
The next figure maps the theoretical software approaches mentioned above to actual implementations and players. It is not meant as a comprehensive industry-wide survey of all software solutions, just the leading ones. Also, with PM being a hot topic, I'm sure many other solutions will join down the road.

Incumbent storage vendors such as EMC, Netapp, and Nutanix have built their rich code base on the block layer. This means that their only viable option to use PM as a storage tier is to wrap it up with an abstraction layer that will present it as a block device (i.e. Approach I).

In contrast, SDM or file system vendors that have deeply believed in PM for the past couple of years, such as Microsoft and Plexistor, have built file-level solutions that use PM as a storage tier. Both companies added support for DAX, which enables zero copy of memory mapped files (MMF), and can support approaches II and III.

As a side note, it will be interesting to compare the performance and features provided by Microsoft ReFS and Plexistor SDM. But, we will have to wait until Windows Server 2016 is released. Also, as interesting as the comparison may be for us techies, I doubt if many Windows users will move to Linux because of it. People do not switch religions overnight.

The DAX support in Microsoft ReFS and Plexistor SDM, as well as the ones being built for EXT4-DAX and XFS-DAX are the foundation for approach III. Intel and HPE have been leading the standardization of this approach through the SNIA NVM Programming Model documents and the complementary NVML library and tests - the same library that just reached its major milestone, the stable 1.0 release.

We at Plexistor are continuously running the 1,779 NVML tests on our SDM software. We've been doing that for a year now, because we believe that customers should be able to run traditional and NVM-aware applications side by side. Customers should be able to transparently share data between these applications and enforce the same policies on that data, regardless of how it was created.

More Stories By Amit Golander

Dr. Amit Golander is the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and R&D Manager for Plexistor. His responsibilities are to develop the product and work with CEO, Sharon Azulai, on the vision for the technology and products.

Golander brings a rich research, development, and leadership background to Plexistor where he has distinguished himself in both the corporate, startup and higher educational realms.In addition to his work in the business and academic sectors, Golander holds over 50 patents and has published a number of technology articles in prestigious engineering journals.

Prior to Plexistor, Golander was VP of Systems and Product for Primary Data where he was responsible for strategic partnerships, alliances and beta customers as well as worked closely with the R&D teams on the day-to-day product management.Golander also worked for IBM for over twelve years on data center and cloud infrastructure.

Golander has also mentored M.Sc. students and taught computer architecture and quantitative analysis at Tel Aviv University.

Golander received his B.Sc. in C.S.and EE and his Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University in the field of computer architecture. His thesis won the Intel Research Award. Prior to his academic studies, Golander served as an intelligence officer in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF).

@ThingsExpo Stories
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, will examine the regulations and provide insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence a...
In the enterprise today, connected IoT devices are everywhere – both inside and outside corporate environments. The need to identify, manage, control and secure a quickly growing web of connections and outside devices is making the already challenging task of security even more important, and onerous. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Rich Boyer, CISO and Chief Architect for Security at NTT i3, discussed new ways of thinking and the approaches needed to address the emerging challenges of security i...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Datera, that offers a radically new data management architecture, has been named "Exhibitor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Datera is transforming the traditional datacenter model through modern cloud simplicity. The technology industry is at another major inflection point. The rise of mobile, the Internet of Things, data storage and Big...
An increasing number of companies are creating products that combine data with analytical capabilities. Running interactive queries on Big Data requires complex architectures to store and query data effectively, typically involving data streams, an choosing efficient file format/database and multiple independent systems that are tied together through custom-engineered pipelines. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Tomer Levi, a senior software engineer at Intel’s Advanced Analytics ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Datera will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Datera offers a radically new approach to data management, where innovative software makes data infrastructure invisible, elastic and able to perform at the highest level. It eliminates hardware lock-in and gives IT organizations the choice to source x86 server nodes, with business model option...
With 10 simultaneous tracks, keynotes, general sessions and targeted breakout classes, Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo are two of the most important technology events of the year. Since its launch over eight years ago, Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo have presented a rock star faculty as well as showcased hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors! In this blog post, I provide 7 tips on how, as part of our world-class faculty, you can deliver one of the most popular sessions at our events. But before reading the...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CA Technologies has been named "Platinum Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CA Technologies helps customers succeed in a future where every business - from apparel to energy - is being rewritten by software. From planning to development to management to security, CA creates software that fuels transformation for companies in the applic...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devic...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Carl J. Levine, Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1, will objectively discuss how DNS is used to solve Digital Transformation challenges in large SaaS applications, CDNs, AdTech platforms, and other demanding use cases. Carl J. Levine is the Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1. A veteran of the Internet Infrastructure space, he has over a decade of experience with startups, networking protocols and Internet infrastructure, combined with the unique ability to it...
SYS-CON Events announced today that GrapeUp, the leading provider of rapid product development at the speed of business, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market acr...
From 2013, NTT Communications has been providing cPaaS service, SkyWay. Its customer’s expectations for leveraging WebRTC technology are not only typical real-time communication use cases such as Web conference, remote education, but also IoT use cases such as remote camera monitoring, smart-glass, and robotic. Because of this, NTT Communications has numerous IoT business use-cases that its customers are developing on top of PaaS. WebRTC will lead IoT businesses to be more innovative and address...
Recently, IoT seems emerging as a solution vehicle for data analytics on real-world scenarios from setting a room temperature setting to predicting a component failure of an aircraft. Compared with developing an application or deploying a cloud service, is an IoT solution unique? If so, how? How does a typical IoT solution architecture consist? And what are the essential components and how are they relevant to each other? How does the security play out? What are the best practices in formulating...
In his opening keynote at 20th Cloud Expo, Michael Maximilien, Research Scientist, Architect, and Engineer at IBM, discussed the full potential of the cloud and social data requires artificial intelligence. By mixing Cloud Foundry and the rich set of Watson services, IBM's Bluemix is the best cloud operating system for enterprises today, providing rapid development and deployment of applications that can take advantage of the rich catalog of Watson services to help drive insights from the vast t...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Elastifile will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Elastifile Cloud File System (ECFS) is software-defined data infrastructure designed for seamless and efficient management of dynamic workloads across heterogeneous environments. Elastifile provides the architecture needed to optimize your hybrid cloud environment, by facilitating efficient...
WebRTC is great technology to build your own communication tools. It will be even more exciting experience it with advanced devices, such as a 360 Camera, 360 microphone, and a depth sensor camera. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Masashi Ganeko, a manager at INFOCOM Corporation, will introduce two experimental projects from his team and what they learned from them. "Shotoku Tamago" uses the robot audition software HARK to track speakers in 360 video of a remote party. "Virtual Teleport" uses a...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Arvind Radhakrishnen discussed how IoT offers new business models in banking and financial services organizations with the capability to revolutionize products, payments, channels, business processes and asset management built on strong architectural foundation. The following topics were covered: How IoT stands to impact various business parameters including customer experience, cost and risk management within BFS organizations.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Golden Gate University will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Since 1901, non-profit Golden Gate University (GGU) has been helping adults achieve their professional goals by providing high quality, practice-based undergraduate and graduate educational programs in law, taxation, business and related professions. Many of its courses are taug...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DXWorldExpo has been named “Global Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation is the key issue driving the global enterprise IT business. Digital Transformation is most prominent among Global 2000 enterprises and government institutions.
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Me...