GreyBeards talk hyper-convergence with Jason Collier, CTO & Co-founder Scale Computing

Welcome to our 11th monthly episode where we return to discussing hyper converged systems, this time with Jason Collier, CTO and Co-Founder Scale Computing. The GreyBeards haven’t talked with an hyper converged system vendor since our 1st episode and we had talked with Scale Computing and Jason at Storage Field Day 5 (SFD5) a couple of months ago. Jason is a blast to talk with so it seemed like a good time to talk with him.

Jason started out in the IT end of this business helping to scale a Web 2.0 company transactions almost 300X with architectural innovations.   Scale Computing originally came out as clustered, scale out storage but their intent all along was to provide hyper converged systems which include storage, networking, compute and virtualization under one and the same system and UI. When they came out with the full solution they dropped their standalone, scale out storage offering.

This month’s episode comes in at around 42 minutes long. 

In this podcast we discuss the “true meaning” of hyper converged systems and how this differs from most of the rest of the industry’s converged system architectures.  They are targeting their solution to the SMB and mid-range marketplace.  Scale Computing offers a fully bundled solution, hardware and software for one fee, which includes all the server virtualization software.  As an example, a 3-node entry level cluster, using 1000 series nodes, only costs $25K MSRP. The GreyBeards go a little deep into how they do storage but it’s not as deep as some prior talks.  Nonetheless, Jason’s a gas to talk with and Howard and I really enjoyed talking again with him. The talk seemed to last only 10 minutes or so but when I looked at the clock we were already out of time. For some reason I never got around to asking Jason why his Twitter id is @bocanuts.  Listen to podcast to learn more.

If your interested in more of in-depth, deep dive on their technology the Greybeards would suggest you view the set of videos from Scale Computing’s SFD5 (link above) sessions.

Jason Collier, CTO and Co-founder Scale Computing

Jason Collier 2

As a founder and Chief Technology Officer, Jason is responsible for the technology vision of the company. Previously, Jason was VP of Technical Operations at Corvigo where he oversaw sales engineering, technical support, internal IT and datacenter operations. Prior to Corvigo, Jason was VP of Information Technology and Infrastructure at Radiate. There he architected and oversaw the deployment of the entire Radiate ad-network infrastructure, scaling it from under one million transactions per month when he started to more than 300 million at its peak. 

GreyBeards talk all-flash arrays with Eric Herzog, CMO and SVP Alliances at Violin Memory Systems

Welcome to our 10th monthly episode where we return to discussing all-flash storage arrays, this time with Eric Herzog, CMO and SVP Alliances for Violin Memory. The GreyBeards haven’t talked with an all-flash array vendor for a couple of months now and it seemed a good time to return.

Eric’s claims to be a fellow Greybeard (even though he doesn’t have a beard) because he has been in the storage industry for over 29 years and has been at 7 startups and 2 of the largest storage companies in the world most recently EMC and previously IBM. Eric moved from EMC to Violin just four months ago and has been out talking about Violin Memory’s latest Concerto software functionality release.

This month’s episode comes in at around 49 minutes long. Very sorry for the length but Eric was a hard man to interrupt once he got going (need to work on that) and seemed to come more well prepared than our typical guest.

In this podcast we discuss the two current Violin Memory all-flash arrays, why there’s more to data storage than $/GB, flash’s economic tipping points, Eric’s view on how the world of storage will evolve, and how big companies can learn to adapt better  Somewhere in all of that, there was some pretty good insight on how companies can save lots of money ($Bs) and even make more money ($100Ms) by using all-flash arrays although the rest of us may not like the later that much. Howard called Violin the Drag Racer of storage, listen to the podcast to find out more …

Eric Herzog, CMO and SVP Alliances

Violin2014-3632-cropped

Eric Herzog has over 29 years of marketing, business development, and sales experience in the storage software, storage hardware, and storage solutions markets. Prior to joining Violin, Herzog was Senior Vice President of Marketing for EMC’s Enterprise & Mid-range Systems Division. Before joining EMC, he was vice president of marketing and sales at Tarmin Technologies. Herzog has also held vice president business line management and vice president of marketing positions at IBM’s Storage Technology Division and Maxtor (acquired by Seagate). Herzog has held vice president positions in marketing, sales, operations, and acting-CFO roles at Asempra (acquired by BakBone Software), ArioData Networks (acquired by Xyratex), Topio (acquired by Network Appliance), Zambeel, and Streamlogic.

 

GreyBeards talk backup with Rick Vanover, Product Strategy Specialist for Veeam

Welcome to our 9th monthly episode where we discuss data backup with Rick Vanover, Product Strategy Specialist for Veeam Software. The GreyBeards just talked with Rick and Veeam at last month’s Storage Field Day 5 (SFD5) in Silicon Valley and once again we would suggest everyone who wants to know more about Veeam backup and even better, new Veeam V8 restore capabilities view the video of their session.

Rick’s has been an icon in the backup industry for many years now and as Veeam’s strategy specialist he spends a lot of time in social media (twitter link below), writes the Rickatron Blog, travels the world attending various conferences and produces the award winning, Veeam Community Podcast. Moreover, Rick said this podcast will be co-distributed by Veeam on their community podcast page, so you can listen to it there as well.

This month’s episode comes in at around 36 and a half minutes.

In this podcast we discuss current IT data protection activities, such as the values and risks of elemental restores, Howard’s recent survey results on data protection for InformationWeek Analytics, and a bit about the best storage for backup.  All in all a good overview of the backup problems in the virtualized server market today and how many of them can be solved right now.

In addition, Howard identified the single “best thing to hit backup over the past 20 years”, (and it wasn’t tape libraries, Ray). Listen to the podcast to find out more …

Rick Vanover, Product Strategy Specialist

Rick Vanover (vExpert, MCITP, VCP, Cisco Champion) is a product strategy specialist for Veeam Software based in Columbus, Ohio. Rick is a popular blogger, podcaster and active member of the virtualization community. Rick’s IT experience includes system administration and IT management; with virtualization being the central theme of his career recently. Follow Rick on Twitter @RickVanover .

Greybeards talk all-flash arrays with Dave Wright, CEO and founder of SolidFire

Welcome to our eight episode where we discuss all-flash storage with Dave Wright, CEO and founder of SolidFire. The Greybeards  just talked with Dave at the SDDC14  and Storage Field Day 5 in San Jose, CA last month.

In this podcast, we learn a lot about SolidFire and other storage arrays from a leading light in the all-flash storage industry. Dave seems to have been around a lot longer than his years and has worked extensively in the cloud gaming and service provider industries. All of which gives him a unique perspective on the needs of storage today.

This months episode comes in at just under 40 minutes. 

We had a wide ranging talk about the virtues of SolidFire’s scale-out, deduplicating Tier 1 & 2 storage, detour into flash technology and the problems benchmarking data reducing, all-flash arrays, and end up with a lengthy discussion on SolidFire’s QoS.

However, If you want to learn about Dave’s technical musings on all-flash architectures, the Greybeards suggest viewing his great video sessions at Storage Field Day 5. Dave did a presentation where he explains the inner workings of SolidFire and some of the other, competitive all-flash storage systems on the market today. The Greybeards seldom find CEO’s with this level of technical understanding of their own product, let alone the competition.

Somewhere during all this Ray learned yet another new acronym, listen to the podcast to learn more…

DaveWright_SF_portraits-16Dave Wright, CEO and founder SolidFire

Dave Wright, SolidFire CEO and founder, left Stanford in 1998 to help start GameSpy Industries, a leader in online videogame media, technology, and software. While at GameSpy, Dave led the team that created a backend infrastructure powering thousands of games and millions of gamers. GameSpy merged with IGN Entertainment in 2004 to create one of the largest Internet gaming & entertainment media companies. Dave served as Chief Architect for IGN and lead technology integration with FIM / MySpace after IGN was acquired by NewsCorp in 2005.

In 2007 Dave founded Jungle Disk, a pioneer and early leader in cloud-based storage and backup solutions for consumers and businesses. Jungle Disk was acquired by leading cloud provider Rackspace in 2008 and Dave worked closely with the Rackspace Cloud division to build a cloud platform supporting tens of thousands of customers. In December 2009 Dave left Rackspace to start SolidFire.  Dave leads the team at SolidFire in the creation of the only storage architecture built specifically to guarantee true Quality of Service (QoS) in a multi-tenant cloud infrastructure.

 

Greybeards talk cloud storage with Marc Farley, product marketing for Microsoft StorSimple

Welcome to our seventh episode. This time we talk about cloud storage and how data centers can have both cloud and on premises storage with the proper system. We discuss all this with Marc Farley, Product Marketing Manager for Microsoft StorSimple Cloud-integrated Storage solution. Marc’s an old friend so besides talking about StorSimple’s technology we had a pretty wide ranging discussion on industry trends and storage startup history.

This months episode comes in at just under 40 minutes and the sound quality is the best yet.

Marc has a long and colorful history in social media and the storage industry having worked as an independent storage consultant, worked for EqualLogic before and after the Dell acquisition, 3PAR before and after the HP acquisition and StorSimple before and after the Microsoft acquisition.

Microsoft’s StorSimple appliance acts as local tier 2 storage but uses local SSD and disk as well as cloud storage to support its data storage services. Marc calls this approach “scale across” storage, i.e. across both local and cloud storage as well as across multiple independent StorSimple appliances.

For the record, although I was the first to mention Wang, Howard initiated and completed the discussion on this. We also asked Marc for his secret to selecting new startups to work for. Not sure we got a real answer to this but it made for an interesting conclusion to the talk.

Listen to the podcast for more

Marc Farley

Marc Farley is a Senior Product Marketing Manager at Microsoft working on the hybrid cloud storage solutions. He has written three books on storage including his most recent, Rethinking Enterprise Storage: A Hybrid Cloud Model and his previous books Building Storage Networks and Storage Networking Fundamentals. In addition to his writing books he has been a blogger and podcaster about storage topics while working for EqualLogic, Dell, 3PAR, HP, StorSimple, and now Microsoft.

When he is not working, Marc likes to ride bicycles, listen to music, spend time with his family and dote on his cats.