[Software Defined Storage (SDS)] is getting a lot of attention lately by press, analysts and technology providers such as IBM, causing organizations large and small to take notice. SDS describes a set of storage access and data management services that can deliver what IT administrators are most interested in these days:
- Lower storage costs
- Less reliance on specific storage systems
- Simplified data and storage management
- Improved utilization of existing resources
International Data Corporation (IDC) published a [taxonomy for Software Defined Storage] which defines software-based storage as a storage software stack running on commodity, off-the-shelf computing hardware. SDS should offer a full suite of storage services and federation of the underlying storage to enable data mobility, according to IDC.
The interesting thing is, while the name Software Defined Storage is relatively new, IBM has been delivering technology and client solutions that match the SDS definition for over a decade.
Matching IDC’s definition, [IBM SAN Volume Controller], introduced in 2003, is an x86-based appliance running Linux code, providing federated storage virtualization across heterogeneous storage platforms and enabling advanced storage services. SAN Volume Controller has been proven to scale to multiple petabytes. This core technology is also included in IBM’s midrange Storwize storage systems. To date, over 55,000 SAN Volume Controller and Storwize systems have been shipped worldwide, making IBM one of the most popular business class storage virtualization solutions.
Sitting on top of the storage virtualization platform, [IBM Virtual Storage Center] offers industry leading end-to-end storage management with analytics driven data management and policy-based automation to enable self-tuning, self-optimizing storage. According to recent research by International Technology Group, IBM’s approach can reduce storage Total Cost of Ownership by [up to 72% compared to EMC solutions in large enterprises], and [up to 35% compared to VMware storage management solutions in mid-size environments].
At the top of IBM’s storage software stack are interfaces that simplify storage, including:
- [OpenStack integration], for automated storage provisioning by cloud applications
- VMware vSphere integration, which provides VMware administrators with a familiar interface for simplified storage provisioning and management.
- IBM advanced graphical interface that dramatically simplifies end-to-end troubleshooting and performance management, provisioning, and other time consuming storage administration tasks
- [IBM Cloud Storage Access] user self-service portal, sold separately
While other vendors scramble to build new offerings for SDS, IBM is extending proven technology that can address your needs today and help you migrate to new era workloads whenever you’re ready.
See [IBM Software Defined Storage at the IBM Edge conference] next week in Las Vegas. Software Defined Storage sessions will be presented at Exec Edge and Tech Edge, and we’ll have live demos in the Solution Center.
If you can’t attend Edge, look for video interviews with Brian Jeffery, Managing Director of International Technology Group, and Steve Wojtowecz, VP of Storage and Network Management Software Development, on [TheCUBE, by Wikibon], live on Monday, May 19 and afterwards on demand.
Learn more about VSC and the rest of IBM’s storage software portfolio at: http://www.ibm.com/software/products/category/storage-software.
About the author:
Jason Davison is the Segment Manager for Storage Virtualization and Cloud Solutions in IBM’s Cloud and Smarter Infrastructure product management group. Views expressed are my own.