PCD / Converge blog

6 Advantages of All-Flash Storage Arrays and SSDs

A common trend in recent years has been to modernize systems by adopting flash technologies, solid state drives (SSDs) and all-flash systems. These solutions offer numerous advantages for businesses seeking to enhance their storage performance, which often becomes a roadblock compared to other infrastructure components.


Evolution in storage systems and technologies seems to suggest that all-flash systems will bring about a radical transformation across the industry and subsequent generations of products. Predictions already suggest that disk drive-based systems will gradually be eliminated over the next 3 to 5 years and replaced with all-flash storage solution arrays—a trend that is expected to increase with the massive investments that manufacturers are making in this technology.

The Evolution and Maturity of Flash Technologies

Nowadays, flash technology is reaping the rewards of advances and lessons gleaned from several earlier generations. It has finally surpassed the maturity and reliability thresholds required for manufacturers to integrate the technology into their business system product lines. Various options have emerged over the last few years, allowing SSD drives to be added to existing SAN environments (e.g., IBM Storwize v3700/5000/7000 product line). Specialized flash storage appliances (e.g., IBM FlashSystem) can also be incorporated to create ultra-fast tiered storage. Next-generation systems are now “completely designed and built” to harness the power of all-flash units. From a technical standpoint, this has helped raise the performance, speed and processing capability of the conventional business SAN to a whole new level.

IBM’s latest solutions, including the FlashSystem V840 and V940 and the new V9000 series announced last week, allow corporations to take full advantage of business application environments such as Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle CRM, SAP and MS Dynamics software suites. They are also used in VMware architecture environments and considerably bolster “real-time” data operating and analysis capacity to help employees and managers with their day-to-day decisions. In addition, with the help of data compression functions, IBM’s V9000 solutions offer flash technology performance at a cost that is even lower than disk-based technology.

Some of the features of the Flash IBM V9000 lineup include:

• IBM FlashCore® – Speeds up critical applications
• Storage virtualization
• Real-time compression: Improves efficiency and monitors flash storage costs by increasing storage capacity up to 5 times.
• IBM EasyTier: Automatically moves data between various established storage tiers.
• Thin provisioning: Optimizes the allocation of storage resources according to the company’s needs.
• High availability and data protection – Includes a complete set of snapshot backup, clone and data replication tools.

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Ready for Flash Technology?

In short, we believe that market conditions and forces have merged to help businesses change the way they manage their storage and the services offered in their business lines. We also encourage companies to seriously consider these options, along with the potential advantages and benefits that flash technologies can provide.
It is important to note that proof-of-concept equipment can be loaned out to businesses interested in trying flash generation arrays, particularly to assess how these systems impact performance in their environment.