I recently got a chance to meet with Eric Herzog, CMO & SVP Business Development of Violin Memory to talk about Violin’s release of their new Windows Flash Array. On April 22nd 2014, Violin Memory, best known for their All Flash Storage Array, released their new Windows Flash Array. Violin was ranked as the market leader for All Flash Arrays by Gartner in 2013. Their new Windows Flash array leverages the huge performance improvements that Microsoft made in the SMB protocol as a part of Windows Server 2012 with Violin’s enterprise class flash storage technology. Violin Memory's Windows Flash Array is designed for virtualization, OLTP, BI and VDI workloads. Some of Violin’s tests with early adopters showed a 200 percent increase in SQL write performance, a 54 percent increase in SQL read performance and a 50 percent decrease in latency under load when compared with a standard all flash array.
The Windows Flash Array is a plug-and-play storage appliance that is built using Violin Memory’s storage array hardware in combination with an embedded version of Windows Server 2012 Storage Server. The Windows Flash Array has a 3U form factor and was jointly developed by Violin and Microsoft. SMB Direct enables the Windows Flash Array to directly load data into the appliance’s DRAM providing extremely fast SMB performance. Dual built-in server blades provide high availability with Windows Failover Clustering right out of the box. The Windows Flash Array provides either 10 GbE or 56G InfiniBand connectivity.
Violin’s new Windows Flash Array provides all of the enterprise storage features that you would expect, including deduplication, thin provisioning, encryption, compression, mirroring, and replications. You can combine up to four Windows Flash Arrays for a total of 256GB of flash storage. Violin markets the unit as having the features of a SAN and the performance of DAN, at the price of NAS. You can learn more about Violin’s new release at Windows Flash Array.