Pure Storage: Data delivered at scale anywhere, everywhere
Pure Storage has over a decade of experience meeting the challenges of data and storage through better software design for your platform. A pre-eminent leader in redefining and creating a class of storage in all-flash media, Pure is future-proofing its capabilities of simplicity, performance and ease of use for the next generation of technology consumption in the cloud.
Jack Hogan, Pure’s Vice President of Technology Strategy, is focused on the company’s cloud go-to-market working with some of the largest software and managed service providers bringing access to cloud technologies on a global basis. “We’re partnering with our customers to drive the simplicity and disruption of access for storage,” pledges Hogan. “Underpinning everything we do is an all-flash technology layer that allows us to achieve sub-millisecond level response times to better manage ERP workloads down from hours to minutes.”
A Modern Data Experience
In today’s world, data is the new fuel, the growth engine. However, being able to effectively access and leverage insights from that data is one of the biggest challenges companies now face. “At Pure we’re focused on bringing all of that data together for what we call a modern data experience,” reveals Hogan. “With as much as 75% of a company’s data going unutilized, it’s vital to get a centralized view. We’re aiming to solve that problem with a suite of solutions and services extended to both the on-premise data center and all the way to the edge via the cloud, offering a centralized storage platform and storage plane.”
Pure & Simple
The Purity operating system operates across all of Pure’s platforms which are controlled via SaaS with Pure1. “Pure1 changes everything,” explains Hogan. “It offers workload and capacity planning, analytics, tech support and more. You get self-driving storage with full-stack, AI-powered data storage management and monitoring. Pure1 allows companies to see where their data is in all venues, whether that be in different tiers of storage in an individual data center, or across different data centers, or even across different clouds. A big part of what Pure is doing is creating that interconnected tissue of how those different data points can come together as one central data hub.”
Why Choose Pure?
- A Gartner’s Magic Quadrant Leader in Solid-State Arrays for six consecutive years and awarded Customers’ Choice 2020
- Offering full uptime capabilities, even during maintenance
- A top 1% B2B company with a Net Promoter Score of 82
- Full hybrid capability to consume storage on-premise and in the cloud
- A solutions stack covering Applications, Analytics & AI, Cloud, Data Protection and Pure as a Service (to buy storage as you consume it)
Discover more ways to purify your business processes at https://www.purestorage.com
3 ways crypto mining is impacting the data centre industry
Around the world - particularly in Russia, Eastern Europe and China - the global rise of crypto currency values has been driving an en masse industrialisation of the mining process. The trend has been bubbling away for several years, as the home mining rig has largely found itself edged out by hyperscale server farms comprising some of the largest data centres anywhere in the industry - all designed to mine crypto.
The demands placed on a facility built and run as a mining operation are somewhat different to those placed on a hyperscale cloud facility or enterprise data centre. Reliability isn’t so much of an issue; if a mine goes down for a few hours, money is lost, but your data centre won’t take half the websites in Western Europe down along with it.
On the flipside, density and cooling are much, much more important. To make a crypto mining operation profitable, you need to be harvesting more crypto currency (be it Ethereum, Dogecoin, or the perennial Bitcoin) than you’re paying for electricity by a significant margin. As a result, some of the most efficient cooling and hyper-dense rack architecture from the past few years - like two-stage liquid cooling - has originated as a crypto mining solution. Now, hyperscale cloud operators in particular are recognising the benefits of these innovations and applying them to other aspects of the data centre industry.
1. Liquid Cooling
Crypto data centres have always been as dense as possible, with their racks running at maximum capacity all day, all year round. By contrast, the average enterprise or cloud data centre isn’t necessarily running at peak capacity 24/7; workloads fluctuate with demand. However, as that demand has skyrocketed over the past year in particular, cloud and enterprise operators have looked to crypto’s preference for liquid cooling as a way to run data centres closer to the ragged edge of performance than ever before.
One example of this is LiquidStack. The Hong Kong startup makes a revolutionary two-phase liquid cooling solution for data centres, which was developed over a number of years inside Bitfury, one of the world’s leading crypto miners. “Bitfury is sharing our knowledge with the global data center community and we are excited that Microsoft and other internet giants can benefit from our years of experience and investment to best practice liquid cooling,” said Joe Capes, CEO of LiquidStack in an interview with Data Centre Magazine.
Now, LiquidStack is going mainstream, with substantiated rumours that Microsoft is looking to adopt their DataTank solutions across its ever-expanding portfolio of hyperscale cloud regions.
2. Denser HPC
One of the issues that liquid cooling solves is how to create ultra-dense server racks that can function at high temperatures. Crypto miners have been grappling with this problem for about a decade now, and the lessons they’ve learned are being happily adopted by the burgeoning data centre HPC market - which is swelling in response to greater AI adoption and increasingly-sizable data sets.
With the density that mining rigs can achieve, server architects are cramming hundreds of kilowatts into individual racks - although it should be noted that this is still relatively rare. A 2020 survey from the Uptime Institute still found that the average density of data centre racks was growing rapidly, however.
“We expect density to keep rising. Our research shows that the use of virtualization and software containers pushes IT utilization up, in turn requiring more power and cooling. With Moore’s law slowing down, improvements in IT can require more multi-core processors and, consequently, more power consumption per operation, especially if utilization is low. Even setting aside new workloads, increases in density can be regarded a long-term trend,” said the report.
In 2020, average rack densities of 20kW and higher became a reality for many data centre operator.
3. Sustainability Concerns
Now for the more worrying news. The industrial scale and massive power consumption inherent to the crypto mining business - and the negative attention that miners are now starting to receive from government - could point towards a concerning future for data centre operators in the wider industry.
Last week, the Chinese government announced that it would open an inquiry into the participation of Beijing’s largest data centre operators - which include the country’s three largest telecom firms - in crypto mining. At a time when the PRC government is attempting a significant reversal of its approach towards sustainability, the significant power draw of crypto mining activities may be one more hurdle than China cares to deal with.
The Indian government is mulling a blanket criminalisation of all crypto mining in the country and, in the US, the State of New York is also looking into tightening regulatory restrictions on the industry.
While crypto mining data centres are not the same as cloud or enterprise facilities, operators should be careful lest the ire of lawmakers be the latest trend to make its way from the crypto sector into the mainstream.