If you follow our blog, you know that we’ve been talking a lot about NVMe and NVMe-over-Fabrics (NVMe-oF) – after all, some say 2019 is the year of NVMe! As you continue to think about what NVMe means for your organization, we wanted to take some time to answer some of your questions about NVMe-oF, and point you to helpful content as you explore both the protocol and the fabric that stitches it together.
Question 1: What is NVMe-oF?
Our blog “NVMe-oF Explained” is a great starting point if you are trying to better understand NVMe-oF. But, to sum it up:
“The NVMe protocol is not limited to simply connecting flash drives, it may also be used as a networking protocol. When used in this context, a “fabric” enables any-to-any connections among elements. This is to distinguish it from a network, which may restrict the connections possible among the attached elements.
NVMe over Fabrics (NVMe-oF) is enabling organizations to create a very high-performance storage network with latencies that rival direct attached storage (DAS). As a result, flash devices can be shared, when needed, among servers.”
Question 2: How do I explain the business value of NVMe-oF?
We recently hosted a webinar titled “NVMe-oF 101 – Understanding NVMe-oF and How it Drives Business Value.” Here are some highlights we discussed in the webinar:
“To address today’s dynamic data requirements, we must consider that end users need a next-generation infrastructure that aligns storage resources with workloads without jeopardizing performance, capacity, or incurring unwarranted expense. Non-Volatile Memory Express over Fabrics (NVMe-oF) is a storage protocol that aims to simplify the interconnection of computer memory, storage, and networking, while improving performance of the storage infrastructure and related applications, to meet IT departments’ objectives and drive business value.”
You can stream the webinar on-demand here.
Question 3: Everyone is talking about the next-generation data center and the role NVMe-oF will play in bringing it to life, but what does that really mean?
Data is not rigid and the infrastructure in which it lives cannot be rigid either. The future data center will be built around the data – to ensure the data is enabled to come alive and drive actionable insights – not simply configured to store it. When organizations put data at the center, performance, scalability, and agility requirements will continue to grow, and this new data center infrastructure will require building blocks — compute, memory, network, and storage – that are easily “composed, deployed, and torn down on the fly.” Enter NVMe-oF.
• Read our blog “Why Composability is the Future of Data Infrastructure”
• Watch the video on “Software Composable Infrastructure”
• Learn in this webinar how our NVMe-oF Storage Products Accelerate Workloads and ROI
Question 4: We’re still evaluating NVMe – does it really deliver predictable performance?
This exact question came up during a recent NVMe webinar that we participated in on AllTech Media with several other companies. It’s important to understand the impact of NVMe on your infrastructure before you can start the conversation about NVMe-oF. To answer the question, simply, yes, NVMe does provide both predictable performance and efficiency, which is essential in allowing applications to deliver real-time information. Check out the webinar mentioned to learn more, and if you’re still looking for answers about NVMe, don’t forgot to take a look at both of our recent guides on the topic:
We’re going to continue sharing more about NVMe-oF and NVMe in the months ahead, and we invite you to join us for future webinars, ask questions using the comment feature below, and/or visit us on our social media channels. We’ll continue to do our best to product content – webinars, blogs, videos, etc. – that address your questions.
And, as always, if you have specific questions about how to best integrate NVMe into your IT environment and what type of solution would be most economical and beneficial for your data center, our experts are here to help – contact us here.