August 24, 2012

Nutanix Scale-Out Storage Servers for Enterprise, Data Center

Nutanix scale-out storage servers for the enterprise, data center.

If you are adding storage/compute capacity for your enterprise or data center, then take a look at Nutanix which provides an elegant alternative to the traditional, expensive SAN, NAS architecture.

A Nutanix storage node is a standard server with fast SSD (no SAN, NAS boxes required).

To add capacity, just add another node. The nodes connect to other nodes via 10 GbE or 1 GbE.

The scale-out of storage is achieved via software - a Google File System like software that enables scaling up to a large number of nodes.

Nutanix Node =
Standard server
+ Fusion-IO PCI Express SSD cards
+ SATA SSD cards
+ 10 GbE, 1 GbE network connectivity

Nutanix Cluster = collection of Nodes

Nutanix Complete Cluster is a scale-out cluster of high-performance nodes (servers), each running a standard hypervisor and complete with processors, memory and local storage (SSDs and hard disks). Each node runs virtual machines just like a standard virtual machine host.

Local storage from all nodes is virtualized into a unified pool by Nutanix Scale-out Converged Storage (SOCS). A VM can write data anywhere in the cluster and is not limited by the storage local to the node where it is running. In effect, SOCS acts like an advanced SAN that uses local SSDs and disks from all the nodes to store its data, i.e. virtual machines running on the cluster write data to SOCS as if they were writing to a SAN. SOCS is VM-aware and provides advanced data management features for virtual machines. It brings data closer to VMs by storing it locally on the cluster, resulting in higher performance at a lower cost.

The Nutanix Storage Server specs – each node can support 80 -100 server workloads; 200 - 300 virtual desktops, which is perfect for an enterprise.

The Good
Nutanix is an elegant storage solution for the enterprise and data center.

The Bad
A Nutanix node fully populated with Fusion-IO cards is expensive. Although, on an overall basis, it still provides low effective cost as each node can support large workloads.

Alternatives to Nutanix + Fusion-IO include Skyera flash storage for the enterprise at $3/GB.

Tags: nutanix storage server, nutanix ssd server, scale-out storage server,  virtual storage server, google file system virtual storage