IBM Expands Flash Storage Solutions for the Cognitive Era

New All Flash Arrays Deliver Fast and Secure Data in the Cloud / IBM Helps Cloud Service Providers Easily Manage Growing Data Storage Challenges
Susan Sullivan / Photo Credit: Jared Lazarus/Feature Photo (PresseBox) (ARMONK, N.Y., ) IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced an expansion of its flash storage portfolio to accelerate adoption of cognitive solutions. IBM designed three new all-flash array products with cognitive capabilities, including self-optimizing technology and industry-leading minimum latency of 250μs (microsecond), to solve the challenge of managing the massive amounts of data associated with achieving high performance data transfer within cloud environments.


IBM’s new all flash arrays are cognitive in design and operation. Storage automation within IBM’s FlashSystem portfolio provides flexibility for data to move from flash to other storage media either within an array, to another IBM array, to more than 300 non-IBM arrays or from a non-IBM array to a different non-IBM array. Moving data from tier-to-tier either within an array or to another occurs through the storage system evaluating and learning usage patterns about how often data is accessed. Automated distribution of data helps to avoid “hot spots” making information available for cognition when and where it is needed.

The new FlashSystems were engineered in close partnership with the IBM Cloud team to meet the needs of Cloud Service Providers (CSP). Built into the solutions are features that prevent “noisy neighbor” problems such as quality-of-service that supports multi-tenancy and mixed workloads for enterprise users and CSPs to begin immediately taking advantage of advanced analytics and cognitive workloads.

“The drastic increase in volume, velocity and variety of information is requiring businesses to rethink their approach to addressing storage needs, and they need a solution that is as fast as it is easy if they want to be ready for the Cognitive Era,” explained Greg Lotko, general manager of IBM Storage and Software Defined Infrastructure. “IBM’s portfolio of flash solutions enable businesses on their cognitive journey to derive greater value from more data in more varieties, whether on premises or in the cloud.”

Flash Solutions for Diverse Client Needs

With today’s news, IBM is addressing the full spectrum of businesses with features specifically needed for cloud environments.

IBM FlashSystem™ A9000: Highly parallel all-flash storage for hyperscale and cloud data centers for the enterprise

FlashSystem™ A9000 all flash storage arrays feature a highly parallel grid architecture which substantially reduces the management tasks involved in typical storage array administration because the solution is self-tuned. Additionally, the FlashSystem A9000 includes a Hyper-Scale Manage feature which enables management of over one hundred units from a single user interface and with its Hyper-Scale Mobility feature enables non-disruptive migration of data between arrays. Leverages field-proven IBM FlashCore™ technology, grid architectures pioneered by IBM data reduction, including pattern removal, deduplication, and real-time compression with consistently low latency while being priced as low as $1.50 per gigabyte.

IBM FlashSystem™ A9000R: Grid-scale, all-flash storage driving business into the Cognitive Era for Cloud Service Providers (CSP)

FlashSystem™ A9000R is designed for the global business with data-at-scale challenges. This all-flash integrated rack system enables larger enterprises to implement cloud services with quality of service and secure multi-tenancy features native in a single system that can easily scale up to the petabyte plus range. Cognitive businesses gain competitive advantage by deriving as much value as possible from data assets. FlashSystem™ A9000R gives an edge to businesses with large-scale data challenges by offering all the advantages of FlashSystem™ A9000 in a rack configuration. Leverages field-proven IBM FlashCore™ technology, grid architectures pioneered by IBM data reduction, including pattern removal, deduplication, and real-time compression with consistently low latency while being priced as low as $1.50 per gigabyte.

IBM DS8888™, an all-flash, mainframe-optimized data system for large enterprises using IBM's enterprise-class servers, z Systems and Power Systems

IBM DS8888 is a high performance, all-flash mainframe optimized storage solution for mission critical databases and applications that analyze data. Providing users with 24x7x365 access to data and applications of transaction processing workloads, it enables faster decision making and unmatched customer reliability, availability, and serviceability.

Clients around the world are adopting IBM Flash Storage. For example, in AZ, the Arizona State Land Department was seeking a solution that could speed access to data, on a path to cognitive.

"The workloads our department manages include CAD files for land mapping, geographic information system (GIS) applications and satellite imagery for the over 9.2 million acres of State Trust lands we’re responsible to oversee. The data we manage is tied directly to our goal to make this information available and to increase its analytical capabilities,” said William Reed, Chief Technology Officer at the Arizona State Land Department. "After exhaustive, comparative proof of concept testing we chose IBM's FlashSystem, which has helped to increase our client productivity by 7x while reducing our virtual machine boot times by over 85 percent."

"American Postal Workers Union Health Plan continues to experience tremendous amounts of data growth within our medical claims department,” said Rich Myers, Senior Network Director, American Postal Workers Union Health Plan. “We need a storage solution that easily scales, simplifies management and reporting, and lowers our costs per terabyte. IBM FlashSystem solves all these problems, and at the same time, increases the speed of our batch processing by 7 to 8 times from our previous solution removing all latency from the system.”

Representing more than 380 patents, IBM’s flash portfolio includes many breakthroughs in performance and ease of use. In addition to cloud-enabled features, IBM flash solutions are also addressing the complexity of data management facing CSPs. IBM’s new Hyper-Scale Manager is a simplified user interface that streamlines data movement. Developed in collaboration with clients and IBM Design Thinking for popular storage management tasks, it reduces mouse clicks by more than 50 percent and eliminates time wasted toggling between the user interface and corresponding files.

All flash solutions announced today complement IBM’s existing award-wining all flash portfolio including FlashSystem 900 and V9000. IBM’s midrange flash solutions are provided by the all flash versions of the industry acclaimed Storwize® family, which offers the performance needed for real-time insights from business data combined with advanced management functions. IBM’s Big Data all flash solution delivers a high density multi-petabyte scale, low cost flash option ideal for industries such as media, genomics, and life sciences.

Around the globe, customers can access IBM’s flash technologies at IBM Centers of Competency, which offer a wide variety of in-center and remote engagements including briefings, demos, proof of concepts, consulting workshops, benchmark testing and more. This includes access to deep IBM storage and flash experts as well as access to its newest solutions and technology.

For more information about IBM’s Flash Centers of Competency visit http://www-03.ibm.com/systems/services/competency/ .

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Hans-Jürgen Rehm
IBM Deutschland
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Nicole Biedermann
External Communications Trainee - IBM Systems

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