Have you ever been stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic? Frustrated by long checkout lines at the grocery store? Trapped at the back of a crowded plane while late for a connecting flight?
Such bottlenecks waste time, energy and money. And while today’s digital logjams might seem invisible or abstract by comparison, they are just as costly, multiplied by zettabytes of data struggling through billions of devices – a staggering volume of data that is only continuing to grow.
Fortunately, emerging Non-Volatile Memory Express technology (NVMe) can clear many of these digital logjams almost instantaneously, empowering system administrators to deliver quantum leaps in efficiency, resulting in lower latency and better performance. To the end user this means avoiding the dreaded spinning icon and getting an immediate response.
What is NVMe®?
NVMe is a purpose-built protocol for NVMe SSDs (solid state drives based on NAND Flash storage media). This set of industry-standard technical specifications, developed by a non-profit consortium called NVM Express, defines how host software communicates with flash storage across a PCI Express® bus. As noted in the recent Marvell Whitepaper on NVMe-over-Fabrics (NVMe-oF), these specs comprise:
Why use NVMe?
The use of NVMe can radically lower latency and improve the speed of data retrieval and storage, both of which are critical in this era of burgeoning data. Specifically, NVMe:
Can I afford NVMe?
As an emerging standard, is NVMe too expensive for many system administrators? No. While it’s true that breakthrough technology often costs more at the outset, costs fall as demand rises, and as administrators gain deeper insights into the total cost of ownership in both client and enterprise applications.
Total cost of ownership is critical, because even as IT budgets continue to shrink, the needs of today’s workforce continue to grow. So administrators need to consider:
The bottom line is that all Flash Storage arrays are becoming more mainstream; more cost-effective midrange storage is becoming widely available; and NVMe adoption for server and storage manufacturers is becoming the new standard. Today, NVMe is commonly used as a caching tier for accelerating applications’ access to data.
And as more and more administrators embrace NVMe-oF technology, including Fibre Channel (FC-NVMe) and Ethernet (NVMe/RoCE or NVMe/TCP), the advantages for users multiply. Ultimately, we all want our employees and customers to be happy, and NVMe helps achieve that.
What components do I need to implement NVMe?
For administrators considering a shift to NVMe, two major categories of solutions exist:
Why administrators should embrace NVMe today
HDDs expanded to SSDs; and NVMe drives further optimization of latency, performance, CPU utilization and overall improvement in application responsiveness. This will help drive another storage shift over the next five years. So with data demands growing exponentially and user expectations rising too, there is no better time to future-proof your storage than now. After all, who likes waiting in line?
For early adopters, NVMe and NVMe-oF delivers immediate benefits – dramatic savings in time, energy and total cost of ownership – paying dividends for years to come.
Additional NVMe information: