Tintri’s recent announcement includes nine new Tintri VMstore T5000 all flash models with capacity expansion capabilities, VM Scale-out software, Tintri Analytics for predictive capacity and performance planning, and two new Tintri Cloud offerings.
The simplicity of VAS enables organizations to scale from 17 TB to 10 PB with a common platform and less than one full time employee dedicated to storage management.
Tintri Scale-out Storage Platform: Built on a VAS foundation for modern storage scale-out with the following features:
Tintri VMstore T5000 All-Flash With Expansion Capabilities: New configuration options for customers:
Tintri first introduced the Tintri VMstore T5000 all-flash series in August 2015. Today, all three models, the T5040, T5060 and T5080, are updated with new capacity options ranging from 17 TB to 308 TB. These systems leverage the latest in 3D NAND technology and high density drives to offer organizations both higher capacity and lower $/GB. In the future, Tintri will also enable capacity upgrades with some of these models to allow customers to scale up their individual VMstores. Combined with VAS VM-level capabilities and VM Scale-out software, customers can scale with complete flexibility, growing from one Tintri T5040 all flash system to 32 fully populated T5080s.
Tintri has always offered real-time, VM-level analytics as part of its Tintri Operating System and Tintri Global Center management system. Today, this foundation expands to include a SaaS offering of predictive analytics that provides organizations the ability to model both capacity and performance requirements. Powered by big data engines such as Apache Spark and Elasticsearch, Tintri Analytics is capable of analyzing stats from 500,000 VMs over several years in one second. By mining the rich VM-level metadata, Tintri Analytics provides customers with information about their environment to help them make better decisions about applications’ behaviors and storage needs.
Tintri Cloud combines the power of the Tintri Scale-out platform and the performance of all-flash VMstores, with the simplicity of its extensive VAS software portfolio to enable organizations to build their own private cloud.
Customers can start with a single Tintri VMstore T5040 with 17 TB of effective capacity and scale out to the Tintri Foundation Cloud with 1.2 PB in as few as eight rack units. Or they can grow all the way to the Tintri Ultimate Cloud, which delivers a 10 PB cloud-ready storage infrastructure for up to 160,000 VMs, delivering over 6.4 million IOPS in 64 RU for less than $1/GB effective. And Tintri’s VM-aware storage is so easy to manage that organizations need less than one full time employee to manage their Tintri footprint as they scale from 17 TB to 10 PB.
Both the Foundation Cloud and Ultimate Cloud include Tintri’s complete set of software offerings for storage management, VM-level analytics, VM Scale-out, replication, QoS, and lifecycle management.
The Tintri VMstore T5000 All-Flash Series with new capacity options is available later this month through Tintri and authorized Tintri resellers. Tintri Analytics is available immediately to customers with current Tintri VMstore support contracts.
VM Scale-out will be available through Tintri Global Center Advanced (Tintri budgetary pricing and cost info is available here), which will be available in June 2016 as both a separate software license and a part of the Tintri Software Suite, which consists of Tintri Global Center Advanced, ReplicateVM, SecureVM and SyncVM. Existing Tintri Global Center Standard customers may also purchase upgrades to Tintri Global Center Advanced.
Tintri Foundation Cloud and Tintri Ultimate Cloud will be available for purchase in June 2016 through Tintri and authorized Tintri resellers.
The field of all-in-on hyper-converged platforms has certainly grown over the past 24 months. While some smaller startups (Nimboxx?) could not gain enough traction early, others have been delivering robust, time-tested gear for several years. Here’s a run-down of a few of the top names.
Scale Computing enters the best hyper converged solutions category by differentiating its HC3 and HC3x hyperconverged platforms with ease of use and simplicity. The company chose to standardize on KVM as a single hypervisor and built its own management layer, creating high functionality without the need for a virtual storage appliance, coupled with object-based storage with direct access to the hypervisor. Reliance on KVM also eliminates licensing fees for commercial hypervisors, making the product attractive to smaller organizations. Scale Computing recently added integrated disaster recovery capabilities into its HC3 platform.
Pivot3 is hardly a newbie, founded in 2002 with a focus on converging virtual servers, storage and networks. The company says it launched its best hyper converged appliance in 2008, when a casino asked for a secure and cost-effective way to store video streams (at the time, Pivot3 called it “serverless computing.”).”
Using Scalar Erasure Coding, Pivot3 developed vSTAC OS, which the company says “allows any program running on one appliance within the cluster to access resources across all the appliances in the cluster.” Pivot3 focuses on the video surveillance and virtual desktop markets and counts more than 1,300 customers worldwide. Recently, Pivot3 acquired NexGen Storage to flush out it’s all-flash offerings.
Hyperconvergence pioneer Nutanix launched its first product in 2011 and initially focused on a message of “ban the SAN.” Today, the company’s Virtual Computing Platform provides integrated compute and storage through servers running a standard hypervisor and the Nutanix OS. According to Gartner’s report on integrated systems, Nutanix’s technology is unique in that “the storage and compute elements are natively converged to create a much tighter level of integration”; a node-based approach that “enables theoretically limitless additions of new compute or storage bandwidth in very small increments.”
Nutanix, which released what it claims was the industry’s first all-flash hyperconverged array last year, has raised $317 million in funding, filed 43 patents, and touts an annualized sales run rate of $300 million. Last year, the company inked an OEM deal with Dell to offer converged appliances built with Nutanix software running on Dell PowerEdge servers.
Gridstore offers best hyper converged solution purpose-built for Microsoft Hyper-V. The startup’s hyperconverged appliances come in both all-flash and hybrid versions. Unlike other scale-out storage products, which use standard storage protocols such as SMB or iSCSI, Gridstore places much of the work of managing the scale-out cluster into the client as a virtual controller. Gridstore may have an advantage in the market if it can capitalize on its position as the first Hyper-V optimized storage system.
Dell’s Nutanix-Based XC Series
Dell’s first Nutanix based hyper converged solution is the XC730xd, which is based on Dell’s PowerEdge R730xd rack-mount server platform. The XC730xd, based on Intel Xeon E5 2600 v3 processors, fits up to 32 TB of storage capacity in a 2U enclosure, or about 60 percent more capacity than the previous model based on the PowerEdge R720xd servers. The second model, the XC630, is based on Dell’s 1U PowerEdge R630 platform, and can be configured with up to 9.6 TB of storage capacity.
EMC VSPEX BLUE
The EMC VSPEX BLUE best hyper-converged infrastructure appliance delivers compute, storage, networking and management through VMware EVO: RAIL and EMC software. EMC claims the solution goes from power on to provisioning virtual machines in less than 15 minutes.
Included with the appliance is VSPEX BLUE Manager, which provides access to electronic services and automated patch and software update notifications; VSPEX BLUE Market, which gives access to pre-validated solutions; and EMC Secure Remote Support for monitoring of the appliance.
Hewlett-Packard in December entered the best hyper-converged infrastructure market with its HP ConvergedSystem 200-HC StoreVirtual. Based on the company’s StoreVirtual virtualized storage solution, it provides advanced data services, disaster recovery, and heterogeneous interoperability across physical and virtual application domains. HP ConvergedSystem 200-HC StoreVirtual includes the converged management of HP OneView for VMware vCenter, as well as robust VMware vSphere integration. A version running the HP Helion cloud was released recently.
HP also recently unveiled its HP ConvergedSystem 200-HC EVO: RAIL, a new hyper-converge appliance based on the VMware EVO: RAIL platform. This combines HP ProLiant SL servers with the VMware suite including VMware vSphere, vCenter Server and VMware Virtual SAN.
The SteelFusion 4.0 from San Francisco-based Riverbed Technology targets the simplification of branch-office IT support by virtualizing and consolidating 100 percent of data and servers from remote sites into data centers to centralize data security and IT management. SteelFusion does this with a series of hyper-converged appliances that are deployed in a remote office to run applications over a WAN using data stored in a central data center.
New with SteelFusion is FusionSync, which provides seamless branch continuity by ensuring all branch data is accessible across private and hybrid cloud environments. This, according to Riverbed, gives remote offices the ability to withstand and recover from data center failures with zero downtime.
Another pioneer in the hyperconvergence space, SimpliVity came out of stealth mode in 2012. The startup’s OmniCube platform combines compute, hypervisor, storage services and network switching on x86 server hardware with centralized management. OmniCube goes further than other integrated systems by incorporating features such as built-in VM backup, in-line data deduplication, compression and optimization at the source, according to Gartner.
Tintri VMstore best hyper-converged appliance consists of a fully redundant box containing flash and spinning storage, designed to simplify the task of providing storage for VMs while adding performance.
Unlike traditional networked storage systems, even those that also integrate flash and spinning disks, there are no LUNs, volumes or tiers, which Tintri says present barriers to virtualization because they have no intrinsic meaning at the VM level. Instead, each I/O request maps to the particular virtual disk on which it occurs, the system accesses the vCenter Server API to monitor and control I/O performance at virtual disk level, and you manage in terms of virtual disks and VMs.
Nutanix vs. Tintri (pricing only comparison)
This is a brief excerpt from the original article at ZDNet.
“The race, therefore, is on to virtualise storage to make it a better fit for the software-defined datacentre as well as more affordable and easier to manage. All the big names are busy doing something — including virtualisation leader VMware, which recently released its own Virtual SAN technology (VSAN) built into the kernel of its ESX hypervisor. But there are other solutions, and for this feature we opted to examine two quite different approaches to the problem: one from Nutanix, the other from Tintri.”
From $74,250 (£43,963) for a 3-node appliance
From $74,000 (£44,246) for the VMstore T620
For a great article highlighting both solutions, check out Nutanix vs. Tintri at ZDNet.
VM auto-alignment and a reporting tool that identifies latency from the guest operating system through the storage.
The Tintri VM storage appliances only support storage with VMware, although Tintri executives say they expect to add support for other hypervisors. The appliances do not support physical servers.
The Tintri VMstore T540 uses a mix of solid-state drives (SSDs) and SATA disk, the same as the VMstore T445, which began shipping in April. The T540 is a 3U dual-controller box with 13.5 TB of usable disk capacity (26.5 TB total ) and 2.4 TB of multi-level cell (MLC) flash. Each box can handle more than 200 virtual machines, said Chris Bennett, Tintri’s vice president of marketing.
Tintri’s original T445 system is a 4U single-controller system with 8.5 TB of usable storage and 1.44 TB of flash. Bennett said the startup will continue to sell the T445 as an entry-level system. The VM storage appliances are NFS-attached today, but Bennett said an iSCSI version may follow. Tintri is also planning more mature storage management features such as replication on a VM basis for future releases.
VMstore nodes can be clustered as NFS shares through 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE).
Bennett said VMstore is designed to generate 99% of its I/O from flash. Tintri claims the system also uses inline deduplication for submillisecond latency.
What makes Tintri different from other SSD systems is its integration with VMware. VMstore communicates with the VMware vCenter Server API to determine which VMs are active on the array. Instead of using volumes, LUNs and RAID groups, VMstores map I/O requests directly to the virtual disk on which they occur. The tight VM integration lets VMstore monitor and control I/O performance for each virtual disk.
Tintri claims its system automatically aligns the storage layer to the guest file system, so administrators don’t have to manually realign them to avoid performance degradation over time. The VMstore management dashboard also identifies latency for each VM and virtual disk to help troubleshoot performance problems.
Pricing for the T540 starts at $90,000, including four 10 GbE ports. The T445 costs $64,000.
Ed Lee, Tintri’s architect, said most of the vendor’s early customers use VMstore for specific applications, such as performance-hungry databases.
“Maybe there’s an application they tried to virtualize and failed, so they try running those applications on us, and then they may migrate other apps,” he said.
Tintri’s challenge will be keeping any edge it has managing VMs as the large storage vendors work more closely with VMware Inc. to take advantage of VMware vStorage APIs for Array Integration (VAAI). At VMworld in August, VMware previewed next-generation VAAIs that enable administrators to provision storage without using LUNs, RAID groups and NAS mount points. EMC Corp., NetApp Inc., Dell Inc., IBM, Hewlett-Packard Co. and Hitachi Data Systems Corp. are working with VMware on these features. But no storage vendors have said they were working on features such as auto-alignment or I/O visibility from VM to storage.
Ray Lucchesi, Silverton Consulting president, said he hasn’t seen other vendors as tightly integrated with VMware as Tintri.
“Tintri is laser-focused on VMware, and tightly coupled to VMware APIs,” Lucchesi said. “I haven’t seen other vendors drill down to the virtual machine and produce the same statistics from the I/O level. I don’t know if other storage vendors are working on that level of integration with VMware. If they are, they’re not showing it yet.”