Welcome!

Microservices Expo Authors: Madhavan Krishnan, VP, Cloud Solutions, Virtusa, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Stackify Blog, Don MacVittie

Related Topics: Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo

Microservices Expo: Blog Feed Post

SSDs, Velocity and the Rate of Change

The rate of change in a mathematical equation can vary immensely

The rate of change in a mathematical equation can vary immensely based upon the equation and the inputs to the equation. Certainly the rate of change for f(x) = x^2 is a far different picture than the rate of change for f(x)=2x, for example. The old adage “the only constant is change” is absolutely true in high tech. The definition of “high” in tech changes every time something becomes mainstream.

You’re working with tools and systems that even ten years ago were hardly imaginable. You’re carrying a phone that Alexander Graham Bell would not recognize – or know how to use. You have tablets with the power that was not so long ago only held by mainframes.

image But that change did not occur overnight. Apologies to iPhone fans, but all the bits Apple put together to produce the iPhone had existed before, Apple merely had the foresight to see how they could be put together in a way customers would love.

The changes happen over time, and we’re in the midst of them, sometimes that’s difficult to remember. Sometimes that’s really easy to remember, as our brand-new system or piece of architecture gives us headaches. Depends upon the day.

Image generated at Cool Math

So what is coming of age right now? Well, SSDs for one. They’re being deployed in the numbers that were expected long ago, largely because prices have come down far enough to make them affordable. We offer an SSD option for some of our systems these days, and since the stability of our products is of tantamount to our customers’ interests, we certainly aren’t out there on the cutting edge with this development. They’re stable enough for mission critical use, and the uptick in sales reflects that fact.

If you have a high-performance application that relies upon speedy database access, you might look into them. There are a lot of other valid places to deploy SSDs – Tier one for example – but a database is an easy win. If access times are impacting application performance, it is relatively easy to drop in an SSD drive and point the DB (cache or the whole DB) at them, speeding performance of every application that relies on that DBMS.

That’s an equation that is pretty simple to figure out, even if the precise numbers are elusive. Faster disk access = faster database response times = faster applications. That is the same type of equation that led us to offer SSDs for some of our products. They sit in the network between data and the applications that need the data. Faster is better, assuming reliability, which after years of tweaking and incremental development, SSDs offer.

Another place to consider SSDs is in your virtual environment. If you have twenty VMs on a server, and two of them have high disk access requirements, putting SSDs into place will lighten the load on the overall system simply by reducing the blocking time waiting for disk responses.

While there are some starting to call for SSDs everywhere, remember that there were some who said cloud computing meant no one should ever build out a datacenter again also. The price of HDs has gone down with the price of SSDs pushing them from the top, so there is still a significant cost differential, and frankly, a lot of applications just don’t need the level of performance that SSDs offer.

imageThe final place I’ll offer up for SSDs is if you are implementing storage tiering such as that available through our ARX product. If you have high-performance NAS needs, placing an SSD array as tier one behind a tiering device can significantly speed access to the files most frequently used. And that acceleration is global to the organization. All clients/apps that access the data receive the performance boost, making it another high-gain solution.

Will we eventually end up in a market where old-school HDDs are a thing of the past and we’re all using SSDs for everything? I honestly can’t say. We have plenty of examples in high-tech where as demand went down, the older technology started to cost more because margins plus volume equals profit. Tube monitors versus LCDs, a variety of memory types, and even big old HDDs – the 5.25 inch ones. But the key is whether SDDs can fulfill all the roles of HDDs, and whether you and I believe they can. That has yet to be seen, IMO. The arc of price reduction for both HDDs and SSDs plays in there also – if quality HDDs remain cheaper, they’ll remain heavily used. If they don’t, that market will get eaten by SSDs just because all other things being roughly equal, speed wins.

It’s an interesting time. I’m trying to come up with a plausible use for this puppy just so I can buy one and play with it. Suggestions are welcome, our websites don’t have enough volume to warrant it, and this monster for laptop backups would be extreme – though it would shorten my personal backup window ;-).

OCZ Technology 1 TB SSD.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Don MacVittie

Don MacVittie is founder of Ingrained Technology, A technical advocacy and software development consultancy. He has experience in application development, architecture, infrastructure, technical writing,DevOps, and IT management. MacVittie holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Northern Michigan University, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University.

@MicroservicesExpo Stories
The cloud revolution in enterprises has very clearly crossed the phase of proof-of-concepts into a truly mainstream adoption. One of most popular enterprise-wide initiatives currently going on are “cloud migration” programs of some kind or another. Finding business value for these programs is not hard to fathom – they include hyperelasticity in infrastructure consumption, subscription based models, and agility derived from rapid speed of deployment of applications. These factors will continue to...
While some developers care passionately about how data centers and clouds are architected, for most, it is only the end result that matters. To the majority of companies, technology exists to solve a business problem, and only delivers value when it is solving that problem. 2017 brings the mainstream adoption of containers for production workloads. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben McCormack, VP of Operations at Evernote, discussed how data centers of the future will be managed, how the p...
Let's do a visualization exercise. Imagine it's December 31, 2018, and you're ringing in the New Year with your friends and family. You think back on everything that you accomplished in the last year: your company's revenue is through the roof thanks to the success of your product, and you were promoted to Lead Developer. 2019 is poised to be an even bigger year for your company because you have the tools and insight to scale as quickly as demand requires. You're a happy human, and it's not just...
Enterprises are adopting Kubernetes to accelerate the development and the delivery of cloud-native applications. However, sharing a Kubernetes cluster between members of the same team can be challenging. And, sharing clusters across multiple teams is even harder. Kubernetes offers several constructs to help implement segmentation and isolation. However, these primitives can be complex to understand and apply. As a result, it’s becoming common for enterprises to end up with several clusters. Thi...
DevOps teams have more on their plate than ever. As infrastructure needs grow, so does the time required to ensure that everything's running smoothly. This makes automation crucial - especially in the server and network monitoring world. Server monitoring tools can save teams time by automating server management and providing real-time performance updates. As budgets reset for the New Year, there is no better time to implement a new server monitoring tool (or re-evaluate your current solution)....
We just came off of a review of a product that handles both containers and virtual machines in the same interface. Under the covers, implementation of containers defaults to LXC, though recently Docker support was added. When reading online, or searching for information, increasingly we see “Container Management” products listed as competitors to Docker, when in reality things like Rocket, LXC/LXD, and Virtualization are Dockers competitors. After doing some looking around, we have decided tha...
"Opsani helps the enterprise adopt containers, help them move their infrastructure into this modern world of DevOps, accelerate the delivery of new features into production, and really get them going on the container path," explained Ross Schibler, CEO of Opsani, and Peter Nickolov, CTO of Opsani, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The benefits of automation are well documented; it increases productivity, cuts cost and minimizes errors. It eliminates repetitive manual tasks, freeing us up to be more innovative. By that logic, surely, we should automate everything possible, right? So, is attempting to automate everything a sensible - even feasible - goal? In a word: no. Consider this your short guide as to what to automate and what not to automate.
identify the sources of event storms and performance anomalies will require automated, real-time root-cause analysis. I think Enterprise Management Associates said it well: “The data and metrics collected at instrumentation points across the application ecosystem are essential to performance monitoring and root cause analysis. However, analytics capable of transforming data and metrics into an application-focused report or dashboards are what separates actual application monitoring from relat...
Cavirin Systems has just announced C2, a SaaS offering designed to bring continuous security assessment and remediation to hybrid environments, containers, and data centers. Cavirin C2 is deployed within Amazon Web Services (AWS) and features a flexible licensing model for easy scalability and clear pay-as-you-go pricing. Although native to AWS, it also supports assessment and remediation of virtual or container instances within Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), or on-premise. By dr...
It’s “time to move on from DevOps and continuous delivery.” This was the provocative title of a recent article in ZDNet, in which Kelsey Hightower, staff developer advocate at Google Cloud Platform, suggested that “software shops should have put these concepts into action years ago.” Reading articles like this or listening to talks at most DevOps conferences might make you think that we’re entering a post-DevOps world. But vast numbers of organizations still struggle to start and drive transfo...
The nature of test environments is inherently temporary—you set up an environment, run through an automated test suite, and then tear down the environment. If you can reduce the cycle time for this process down to hours or minutes, then you may be able to cut your test environment budgets considerably. The impact of cloud adoption on test environments is a valuable advancement in both cost savings and agility. The on-demand model takes advantage of public cloud APIs requiring only payment for t...
High-velocity engineering teams are applying not only continuous delivery processes, but also lessons in experimentation from established leaders like Amazon, Netflix, and Facebook. These companies have made experimentation a foundation for their release processes, allowing them to try out major feature releases and redesigns within smaller groups before making them broadly available. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Brian Lucas, Senior Staff Engineer at Optimizely, discussed how by using ne...
While we understand Agile as a means to accelerate innovation, manage uncertainty and cope with ambiguity, many are inclined to think that it conflicts with the objectives of traditional engineering projects, such as building a highway, skyscraper or power plant. These are plan-driven and predictive projects that seek to avoid any uncertainty. This type of thinking, however, is short-sighted. Agile approaches are valuable in controlling uncertainty because they constrain the complexity that ste...
"We're developing a software that is based on the cloud environment and we are providing those services to corporations and the general public," explained Seungmin Kim, CEO/CTO of SM Systems Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"This all sounds great. But it's just not realistic." This is what a group of five senior IT executives told me during a workshop I held not long ago. We were working through an exercise on the organizational characteristics necessary to successfully execute a digital transformation, and the group was doing their ‘readout.' The executives loved everything we discussed and agreed that if such an environment existed, it would make transformation much easier. They just didn't believe it was reali...
"CA has been doing a lot of things in the area of DevOps. Now we have a complete set of tool sets in order to enable customers to go all the way from planning to development to testing down to release into the operations," explained Aruna Ravichandran, Vice President of Global Marketing and Strategy at CA Technologies, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Agile has finally jumped the technology shark, expanding outside the software world. Enterprises are now increasingly adopting Agile practices across their organizations in order to successfully navigate the disruptive waters that threaten to drown them. In our quest for establishing change as a core competency in our organizations, this business-centric notion of Agile is an essential component of Agile Digital Transformation. In the years since the publication of the Agile Manifesto, the conn...
"Codigm is based on the cloud and we are here to explore marketing opportunities in America. Our mission is to make an ecosystem of the SW environment that anyone can understand, learn, teach, and develop the SW on the cloud," explained Sung Tae Ryu, CEO of Codigm, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Many enterprise and government IT organizations are realizing the benefits of cloud computing by extending IT delivery and management processes across private and public cloud services. But they are often challenged with balancing the need for centralized cloud governance without stifling user-driven innovation. This strategy requires an approach that fundamentally reshapes how IT is delivered today, shifting the focus from infrastructure to services aggregation, and mixing and matching the bes...