by Lyle Smith

EMC VFCache Server Caching Solution Announced

EMC Corporation has announced the EMC VFCache, a new server Flash caching solution. VFCache and EMC Flash-enabled storage systems significantly improve application performance by leveraging intelligent software and PCIe Flash technology; tests have resulted in increased throughput of up to 3X while reducing latency by 60%. With this announcement, EMC is extending Flash technology servers and developing the benefits of PCIe Flash technology from edge-case social media and internet to mainstream mission critical applications including Microsoft, Oracle, and SAP. As a result, databases, OLTP, email, Web, and reporting—any read-intensive workloads with cacheable working sets—will benefit from PCIe Flash.

Combined with VMAX, VMAXe, VNX and VNXe storage, EMC VFCache brings turbocharged performance with the protection (e.g. high availability, data integrity, reliability, and disaster recovery), without the disrupting customers' existing storage architectures.
Back in 2008, EMC was the first to integrate Flash drives into an enterprise storage array producing 300X faster data access than 15K HDD. Now, EMC is placing Flash technology in the server on PCIe cards, which further accelerates performance and is 4000X faster in data access than 15K HDD.

Next year, EMC will add deduplication technology to VFCache, giving customers the ability to achieve even more efficiency from Flash technology. Additional Flash capacity and form factors will also be supported in the future. Additionally, VFCache will further integrate with EMC storage management technologies and other integration with FAST architecture resulting in networked infrastructure that is dynamically optimized for performance, intelligence, and protection for both physical and virtual environments.

Benefits and features of EMC VFCache Technology:

  • Turbocharged Performance. VFCache is the fastest PCIe server Flash caching solution available today. VFCache resides in the server, eliminating the need for hot data to travel through the network to the storage array—boosting throughput performance in some cases up-to 3X and reducing latency by 60%. EMC is offering the industry's best architecture—the PCIe Flash cards deliver better throughput and response, while using four times less CPU and memory resources than competing solutions.
  • Automated Intelligence. VFCache is enabling a new tier of high performance storage in the server. VFCache extends the EMC FAST architecture to facilitate an intelligent end-to-end data tiering and caching strategy from the storage to the server. EMC's focus on enabling customers to exploit the cost and performance benefits of FAST technology has catapulted EMC's leadership in enterprise Flash.
  • Enterprise-Class Protection: VFCache enables customers to benefit from total protection with "write-through caching" to the storage array. When data is written to VMAX, VMAXe, VNX or VNXe storage, customers have the confidence of knowing data is protected by the industry's highest availability storage with data integrity, data reliability and disaster recovery. The information remains shareable and scalable—without any stranded storage.
  • EMC also plans an early customer access program for "Project Thunder" in the second quarter of 2012. "Project Thunder," optimized for high-frequency, low-latency read/write workloads, will build upon the advanced PCIe technology delivered in VFCache to leverage the power of Flash through a dedicated server networked Flash-based appliance.

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