SolidFire, the Boulder, Colorado based manufacturer of all-flash storage systems has announced Q2 2014 availability of Carbon, Version 6 of its Element OS. Included in this upcoming release is a whole new set of enterprise class features such as real-time replication and integrated backup & restore.
SolidFire is providing this upgrade for free to existing customers including all the new enhancements. The new features included are:
- Native 16Gb Fibre Channel connectivity in an active/active scale-out configuration, which can be used simultaneously with existing 10Gbit iSCSI support
- Real-time remote replication for long distance data protection and disaster recovery, with integrated compression and deduplication
- Mixed-node cluster support, allowing customers to mix any current-generation SolidFire nodes in a single cluster, along with future systems, giving customers immediate access to the latest flash technologies and completely eliminating the forklift storage system upgrade
- Integrated backup and restore to secondary storage, including any object storage that supports the S3 or Swift APIs
These enhancements appear to be providing real value to their existing customer base. According to Matt Loschert, CTO of managed hosting provider ServInt,
"With mixed node support, SolidFire has eradicated the concept of 'generational' or 'forklift upgrades' common with traditional disk and other all-flash storage systems. As we scale our storage infrastructure we simply add the most current SolidFire platform without downtime or impact to our hosted customers - resources are instantly available."
Aside from ServInt, SolidFire products can be found in several other cloud data centers such as CloudSigma, Internap and SunGard. Most cloud data centers are built on 10GbE infrastructure which makes the addition of 16Gb FC connectivity of particular interest. Since fibre channel is predominantly found in large enterprises it appears that SolidFire is moving beyond just large cloud data centers and is now targeting the traditional enterprise market as well. Furthermore, by adding in the replication and backup services, SolidFire is positioning themselves to be much more than just a point solution.