Media is Not Created Equal and NVMe is Just a Protocol

In this era of over-marketing and misinformation, it can be refreshing to clarify things for customers.

Allow me to be refreshing regarding NVMe 🙂

NVMe is simply a protocol. Just like SCSI is a protocol. NVMe is most assuredly not a media type. Yet, storage vendors keep talking about “NVMe drives” and customers often think those devices are equal as long as “NVMe” is mentioned.

Alas, that’s not how things work…

Strictly speaking, there’s no such thing as an NVMe drive. Or, at the very least, calling something an “NVMe drive” isn’t enough to describe what that media is, and it’s especially not enough to describe how fast it may be.

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When Terrified Vendors Attack: The Dell Edition

It recently came to my attention that Dell is now advertising some kind of benchmark that shows one of their platforms can be faster than Nimble in some very specific test of their own concoction.

While I don’t doubt that’s possible (indeed, we could do it the other way around), it may be worthwhile investigating what’s prompting the attack.

I also wanted to point out the various technically fishy points of the benchmark.

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Why it is Incorrect to use Average Block Size for Storage Performance Benchmarking

Just a quick post to address something many people either get wrong or just live with due to convenience.

In summary: Please, let’s stop using average I/O sizes to characterize storage system performance. It’s wrong and doesn’t describe how the real world works. Using an average number is as bad as using small block 100% read numbers shown in vanity benchmarks. Neither is representative of real life.

Using a single I/O size for benchmarking became a practice for a vanity benchmark and to provide a level playing field to compare multiple products.

But, ultimately, even though the goal of comparing different systems is desirable, using a single I/O size is fundamentally flawed.

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Nimble Cloud Volumes Removing Risk From Cloud Storage

As of February 27th 2017, Nimble Storage announced Nimble Cloud Volumes (NCV), marking Nimble’s entry into the cloud space.

For those short on time: Nimble Cloud Volumes is block storage as a service, works with compute from AWS & Azure, and avoids the significant block storage drawbacks of those two providers. In essence, it is enterprise storage as a service, at a competitive price, while retaining all the cloud conveniences.

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