X-IO Technologies goes all flash with ISE 800

X-IO Technologies brings out its first system designed to have all solid state drives, the ISE 800, while keeping their five-year maintenance guarantee.

X-IO Technologies launched its first all-flash array this week, the ISE 800 series that includes three models aimed at online transaction processing (OLTP).

The all-flash series includes the ISE 820 that scales up to 6.4 TB of raw capacity, the 850 that holds up to 25.6 TB and the 860 that handles up to 51.2 TB. The capacity levels decrease when RAID 10 or 5 is used. The arrays use SanDisk enterprise-class multi-level cell (MLC) SSDs.

All the ISE 800 models support 8 Gbps Fibre Channel and a Gigabit Ethernet management port. X-IO claims the devices can achieve an I/O speed of 400,000 IOPs per second, with 260,000 IOPs for OLTP workloads.

"The primary place we think this really works is in OLTP," said Gavin McLaughlin, X-IO's vice president of marketing. "We'll be able to leverage our customer base that has Microsoft SQL Servers. We already have lots of proven installations there."

The ISE series are part of X-IO's G3 product generation that launched in January with a firmware upgrade. It includes thin provisioning, storage quality of service, active-active synchronous mirroring, and boosted VMware integration.

X-IO in January launched the ISE 780 systems, which can be loaded with all flash or used as hybrid arrays with flash and hard disk drives, but the ISE 800 is the vendor's first system designed specifically as an all-flash array. With the all-flash system, X-IO joins a crowded market. More than a dozen vendors are selling all-flash arrays, including major storage vendors EMC, IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, NetApp and Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) plus well-funded startups that sell only flash arrays.

"We may be late but we are coming in at the head of the table," McLaughlin said.

McLaughlin said one of the other key offerings with the new 800 series is a five-year guarantee that the systems won't need maintenance.

"There are no conditions," he said. "We don't cheat. Five years and do what you want."

Stu Miniman, principal research contributor for Wikibon, said X-IO is not necessarily coming in late to the game because high adoption of all-flash systems is just beginning. Five years ago, flash customers would go into a deal thinking they wanted an all-flash array but would conclude that a hybrid approach was a better deal.

"There is more adoption for all-flash arrays now," he said.

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