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All-flash storage systems: 2015 Products of the Year finalists

The all-flash storage system finalists include upgrades from large storage vendors and all-flash pioneers, as well as a few vendors who launched their first all-flash arrays.

Finalists for all-flash storage systems show how the all-flash market is maturing. This list includes mainly familiar systems that have been upgraded, although a few vendors' first all-flash storage systems made the list as well.

Products eligible in the all-flash storage systems category include storage platforms that can only be purchased with all-flash storage and no hard disk drives, including Fibre Channel and iSCSI SAN, NAS, multi-protocol systems, converged and hyper-converged infrastructure products, DAS, solid-state storage drives, disk controllers, caching appliances, storage virtualization appliances and cloud-integrated storage.

EMC Corp. XtremIO

XtremIO is the sales market leader among all-flash arrays. The platform had a hardware and software upgrade in 2015. A new 40 TB X-Block doubled the density of the next largest node and 4.0 software improved performance and made storage provisioning easier.

Gridstore Inc. All-Flash HyperConverged Appliance (HCA)

Gridstore all-flash hyper-converged systems are built on Windows Server 2012 R2 and Hyper-V and integrate with Microsoft System Center and Windows Azure Pack. Other enhancements include three new CPU options, expansion of DRAM to 512 GB, and two higher density flash options that allow up to 92 TB of SSD storage in a 2U box.

HPE 3PAR StoreServ 20850

HP's latest all-flash array from its flagship 3PAR platform can scale to 6 PB of raw capacity. HP claims the 20850 can handle 3 million IOPS and comes in at a $1.50 per GB price. It uses 3PAR's Gen5 ASIC for hardware acceleration of features such as inline deduplication.

IBM FlashSystem V9000

The V9000 combines the company's high-end all-flash platform with its storage virtualization software. It can scale to 285 TB in one system, and virtualize 32 PB of external storage incorporating IBM's storage features. They include enhanced Real-Time Compression, Easy Tier storage analytics, FlashCopy Manager and VMware VASA, VAAI and VVOL integration.

Kaminario Inc. K2 v5.5

Kaminario's latest all-flash system uses 3D TLC NAND to lower the price to under $1/GB (based on a 3-to-1 data reduction ratio). The new systems scale to 360 TB per K-Block, and up to 1.44 PB in a four K-Block cluster. Kaminario also added native array-based asynchronous replication and encryption.

NetApp Inc. All-Flash FAS8000 (AFF 8000)

The latest all-flash version of NetApp's FAS platform lets customers move data from flash to disk to cloud. NetApp claims the system can produce up to four million IOPS. It includes NetApp's FlashEssentials consisting of a flash-optimized read data path, inline compression and zero-based inline deduplication.

Pure Storage Inc. FlashArray m series

For its fourth generation of all-flash arrays, Pure performed a hardware redesign. The m series scales from 5 TB to 50 TB in one rack, and can achieve 300,000 IOPS in a full-loaded 136 TB system with expansion shelves. With the m series, the vendor added Pure1 cloud-based management and monitoring.

SolidFire SF9605

This list includes mainly familiar systems that have been upgraded, although a few vendors' first all-flash storage systems made the list as well.

SolidFire's newest array scales to 9.6 TB of raw capacity with 50,000 predictable IOPS, and is built on the vendor's Element 8 Oxygen operating system. New capabilities include rollback to a second site via snapshot replication, simplified scheduling and automation of snapshots, and support for 256 isolated per-tenant storage networks on one platform.

Tintri VMstore T5000 All-Flash series

The VM-aware storage vendor's first all-flash system can hold up to 23 TB of raw capacity and handle 5,000 VMs in one box. The T5000 manages, replicates and automates storage at the VM-level.

Violin Memory Inc. 7300/7700 Flash Storage Platform

Violin's latest all-flash platform includes a new set of enterprise data services. They include all redundant components that are non-disruptively upgradeable, asynchronous replication with space-efficient snapshots, synchronous replication, continuous data protection and stretch clusters for failover between active-active metro sites.

X-IO ISE 800 Series G3 All Flash Array (ISE 800)

X-IO's first all-flash array scales to 51 TB of raw capacity. X-IO claims its all-flash arrays can achieve 400,000 IOPS and 260,000 IOPS for OLTP workloads. The ISE 800 also includes a five-year guarantee for all maintenance.

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