Are you or your customers reluctant to implement Copy Data Management?
Do you need a driver for an All-Flash Array Project?
Many customers are reluctant to introduce Spectrum Copy Data Management as they feel that it may put a large demand on their existing arrays. Others don’t want to implement flash or all flash for the perceived costs and disruption involved in such a project.
IBM Spectrum Copy Data Management (and Spectrum Protect Plus, when using data re-use and CDM functions) are excellent use cases for implementation of All-Flash arrays.
IBM Spectrum Copy Data Management uses snapshots on the primary arrays or hypervisors, unlike most other competitor products which use data ingested from production arrays or hypervisors into their own dedicated data storage. This copy data is typically ingested either via software on a client machine, or by insertion into the SAN fabric. The advantage here is that IBM Spectrum Copy Data Management is able to use less infrastructure and in addition there is a much lower bar to implementation as the customer doesn’t have to introduce new hardware into the datacentre, or disrupt a production SAN. With IBM Spectrum Protect Plus, it’s slightly different, we’re re-using the backup storage, in order to deliver the Copy Data Management functionality, thus making use of what would otherwise be dormant data.
Of course, many customers will have sized their production environments in order to have the IOPS/bandwidth that they need with little to spare. It’s highly likely that introducing new calls on the resources will exceed what’s available. This is where all-flash comes in, with IBM Spectrum Software Defined Storage technologies, it’s trivial to introduce a new all-flash array as a tier to augment the customer’s existing rotational disk arrays or even to replace them. The introduction of all-flash gives vast amounts of IOPS in comparison to rotational disk arrays – IOPS are typically the critical limiting factor here – thus allowing increased calls on the customer’s production arrays for both production and copy data use cases. This does, of course, seem like introducing another array in the way which we’ve just criticised our competitors for doing. On the surface, this would appear to be the case, however there’s an important difference in that none of our competitors suggest all-flash production arrays for copy data, they are mainly interested in getting customers’ data into their own environments, creating vendor lock-in.
The use of all-flash with IBM Spectrum Copy Data Management benefits both Production and Copy Data environments by introducing higher performance systems for both, but requiring no dedicated, additional hardware to enable the Copy Data environment. Typically customers introducing all-flash and Spectrum CDM will see a better performing environment for less overall outlay, with less datacentre footprint, energy consumption and management overhead, but greater functionality.