FDR wasn’t talking to storage architects when he famously said “We have nothing to fear but fear itself,” but with Oracle’s launch of powerful new SPARC servers, he could have been. Just think, the SPARC T5-8 server packs up to 1,024 threads and 4TB of memory into 8U of rack space – a capability that up until a couple of years ago was reserved for the world’s fastest supercomputers. As a result, storage architects are concerned that their legacy NAS and SAN systems won’t be able to keep up with these new computational powerhouses. Is their fear justified?
The answer is an unequivocal “Yes, “but they can do something about it.
Over the years I’ve seen lots of companies stick with existing storage when they move to new, more powerful servers. I understand the reasoning – they’re just running the same applications and databases, so they don’t need new storage. But their users won’t use the applications in the same way as before even if that was the plan. For example, business intelligence apps will run faster, so end-users want to analyze larger problems or run more predictive models, putting unforeseen pressure on the storage systems, which can easily lead to fear.
To assuage your fear, you need to ensure that your new SPARC T5 servers are complemented by equally powerful storage systems that can keep up with the I/O loads the servers generate and yet be agile enough to change when application requirements dictate. The good news is that Oracle has a storage solution that meets these needs.
Oracle’s Sun ZFS Storage Appliance are specifically engineered to support the new SPARC servers with more compute threads to serve more concurrent I/O requests, more memory and Flash caches to efficiently serve massive numbers of VMs, and more memory bandwidth to move data through the system as it is needed.
And, it doesn’t stop there.
Many of the SPARC T5 servers that we ship will run Oracle Database, and Oracle’s efforts to engineer hardware and software together extend beyond the database and the server to include the three-way optimization of Oracle software, Oracle servers, and Oracle storage.
It only makes sense that Oracle would be able to engineer the best storage for Oracle Database and SPARC T5 systems. There are many reasons why this is so, but three of the ones we highlight in our press release are:
1. Oracle Database benefits from high levels of parallelization in both SPARC T5 server and Sun ZFS Storage Appliances.
2. Sun ZFS Storage Appliances are the only NAS systems that support Oracle Solaris Cluster and work with SPARC T5 systems to deliver sub-second application failover for mission-critical applications that experience a server or software problem.
3. Sun ZFS Storage Appliances deliver multi-faceted I/O stack optimization for Oracle Database that that increase performance and simplify the creation and development of both production and test and development environments.
The bottom line is that you can update your compute infrastructure independently of your storage and risk the consequences, or you can incorporate Sun ZFS Storage Appliances and get the only storage specifically engineered to optimize SPARC T5 environments.