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SIOS iQ software troubleshoots VMware shared storage

SIOS iQ analytics software for VMware shared storage discovers interdependencies between applications, compute nodes, networking and storage.

SIOS Technology Inc. on Tuesday enhanced its SIOS iQ analytics software for VMware shared storage, adding prescriptive guidance to help boost the performance of vSphere virtual machine (VM) tools.

The vendor introduced SIOS iQ in July to support VMware's vSphere 6.0. SIOS iQ uses machine learning to analyze virtual infrastructure and pinpoint root causes of bottlenecks with VMware shared storage.  

SIOS iQ discovers the interdependencies between applications, compute nodes, networking and storage. Analytics measure virtual storage infrastructure on four dimensions: performance, efficiency, reliability and capacity.

Version 3.3 includes Resource Optimization to help identify and eliminate idle VMs and superfluous snapshots. The tool provides insights on network anomalies and undersized, recently migrated or newly provisioned VMs. SIOS iQ analyzes all blocks written to disk and recommends specific VM workloads to accelerate with server-side flash caching, as well as how much flash storage is needed.

"We see the virtual space as a big data-mining problem. Our machine learning reveals the patterns and associations among objects in a virtualized infrastructure," said James Shocrylas, SIOS Technology director of product management. "We are able to understand the interrelationships across hundreds of thousands of data points and drive very precise insights into performance issues."

Nik Rouda, an analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group, said SIOS's machine learning explains the cause-and-effect relationship between contending resources and subsequent performance issues.

"They aren't the first company to think about IT analytics, but the level of depth they go to is really useful," Rouda said. "The way they use machine learning to map and graph the relationships and pull out nuanced behavior patterns is going to come in very handy in virtualized environments."

The SIOS iQ software profiles virtual infrastructure for seven days before machine learning kicks in. It measures performance against a set of industry best practice and presents recommended actions to apply in vCenter. 

"We don't explicitly pull out whether a particular block requires indexing. We don't go as granular as [analyzing] the code, but we do identify which applications are misbehaving," SIOS CTO Sergey Razin said.

SIOS iQ 3.3 integrates support for VMware vRealize 6.0 for orchestrating virtual cloud storage. Version 3.4, scheduled for release in December, is expected to include topology impact analysis, host failure analysis for high availability VMware storage, and "semi-supervised learning" that lets domain experts input performance analytics to augment machine learning.

SIOS iQ so far focuses only on VMware-virtualized storage, but Shocrylas said support for Microsoft Hyper-V and open source KVM hypervisors is on the roadmap, perhaps as soon as the second quarter of 2016.

SIOS iQ software is sold separately from the vendor's flagship DataKeeper data replication and block-level clustering software for Windows and Linux, which runs on industry-standard, commodity-priced server hardware.  

Customers can purchase a SIOS iQ license for $150 per cluster per month, paid annually. The software is deployed once and licensed against the number of hosts in service. SIOS also makes available a free version with limited features.

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