2016 Predictions for Supercomputing: Storage
By   |  February 17, 2016

Molly Rector is CEO, EVP Product Management and Worldwide Marketing at DDN Storage

In 2015, DDN achieved another successful year of storage innovation in the Enterprise, Big Data, Cloud and HPC markets, and we continue to see high demand from companies that want to accelerate their applications and performance. As we look ahead, the emergence of hyper-converged storage solutions and the explosion of flash storage, are paving the way for more advanced approaches to solving analytics, workflow and data access needs at large scale. Here are some of the storage trends we expect to see in 2016.

Hyper-Converged Storage Solutions Abound
The storage industry will take the lead on converging the newest components that drive speed and density into a “hyper-converged” infrastructure platform. This platform will take full advantage of advanced technologies to achieve the highest performance and lowest latency in a form factor that is extremely efficient, easy to maintain and will scale without bound. This hyper-converged infrastructure will be more about the performance gain you get providing faster time-to-results and a competitive edge, than just about simplicity and cost saving.

Optimized Storage Hardware Makes a Come Back
Flash is being used to increase performance for many enterprise workloads. A lot of end users are embracing flash-based solutions, while ignoring the cost-efficiency side of the equation. Maximizing efficiency and performance of flash requires the optimization of hardware as well as software. Organizations will increasingly recognize the importance and necessity of purpose-built architectures to encompass greater efficiency and exploit the full capabilities of their expensive flash investments.

HPC Moves Into the Enterprise
To meet the evolving requirements of performance and scale, storage, data management and application acceleration technologies from the high performance computing (HPC) industry are being tapped at an accelerated rate and will replace traditional IT infrastructures at an even a faster pace in 2016. Large-scale commercial enterprises are learning from the successes of early pioneers in the adoption of HPC technology into enterprise to solve a myriad of challenges: rapidly growing data sets, “Big Data” democratization, analytics initiatives, and data sharing across geographies. These enterprises will accelerate their adoption of storage solutions that historically have almost exclusively been deployed in supercomputing labs.

End-To-End, Consolidated Storage Systems Take Root
As storage buyers look to achieve performance, capacity and cost objectives, they increasingly do so by consolidating storage silos into much larger, shared data depots or data lakes. These will be automated, tiered systems that will handle data across a wide and increasingly varied set of applications, including the ability to ingest, process and archive data from multiple locations in a single, unified namespace. Environments where this preference will be particularly pronounced include Finance, Life Science, Manufacturing, Video Surveillance and Oil & Gas.

Flash Blurs the Line Between Caching and Storage
Flash will increasingly be placed outside of the storage array and closer to compute to further reduce latency and increase application performance by orders of magnitude. This move will continue to blur the line between caching and storage. The flash layer will naturally become more persistent as performance-intensive applications rely upon this ultra-fast tier to deliver results at speeds that outpace their competition.

Proliferation of Flash Media Types
Organizations are deploying flash to accelerate application and I/O performance. Storage vendors will have to look beyond applications and accelerate entire workflows—which means selecting very specific flash media, whether that be NVMe, PCIe and SSD, among others.
DDN is poised to be at the forefront of these trends. We remain focused on delivering the next generation of storage innovations that will help our customers solve their most complex data and analytics challenges faster and more efficiently than ever thought possible.
Here’s to a great 2016!

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