Pure Storage announces new Cloud Block Store & CloudSnap for AWS

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The week prior to  Amazon’s re:Invent conference this month, Pure Storage announced new cloud data services for customers needing enterprise class storage services operating in AWS. 

Pure Storage Cloud Block Store 

Pure has announced a new cloud storage service offering, Cloud Block Store for AWS. The new solution is a storage as a service offering, available on AWS marketplace that offers enterprise class iSCSI storage services operating in AWS. 

Cloud Block Store is Purity softwarethat has been optimized for AWS backend storage. Purity is Pure’s FlashArray storage operating system. Customers that sign up for the service will also be billed for the Cloud Block Store capacity they use, and the AWS compute and  storage used to support it. 

Pure FlashArray Purity software supports always on, deduplication, compression and thin provisioning as well as space efficient snapshots. These capabilities will also be available in Cloud Block Store. Further, Cloud Block Store data will always be encrypted, with customers holding encryption keys.

Enterprises can elect to purchase HA Cloud Block Store that uses 2 controller (EC2) instances for fault tolerance via ActiveCluster or non-HA Cloud Block Store which only uses one controller. With HA Cloud Block Store, customers can configure their multiple Cloud Block Store instances across two AWS availability zones for even more resilience. Cloud Block Store takes advantage of EBS NVMe SSD storage as a write journal or NVRAM which is mirrored locally and available to both instances to support data availability during a zone or controller instance outage. Moreover, with multiple controller instances, Cloud Block Store will aggregate activity across those controllers to provide higher performance. 

Cloud Block Store is managed by Pure1 cloud based managementservice that is used to manage customer on prem FlashArrays. With Cloud Block Store, IT admins receive the same management CLI, GUI, and RESTfull APIs they use for on prem, FlashArray storage. This includes VASA/VAAI/SRM/vCenter plugin support for VMware Cloud on AWS. Pure Storage customers can asynchronously replicate on prem, FlashArray storage to Cloud Block Store for DR/BC in case of primary site outages. 

Pure Storage CloudSnap

Pure also offers CloudSnapthat can offload a FlashArray snapshot and save it to AWS S3 storage. CloudSnap snapshots can be also, triple replicated, across multiple availability zones in S3 for high durability in AWS.

CloudSnap utilizes the same protection group policy for async replication for FlashArray storage. Pure1 will maintain CloudSnap snapshot catalogs and provide data protection reporting. CloudSnap also supports compressed  data transfers and uses incremental change tracking to reduce S3 bandwidth requirements.  

CloudSnap’s can be restored to on prem FlashArray storage or restored to a Cloud Block Store instance in AWS for BC/DR. CloudSnap restores are metadata optimized that only restore the data blocks not currently on the system.

StorReduce for AWS

Pure also announced a preview of their recent acquisition, StorReduce. StorReduce provides an S3 backup file deduplication engine. Unlike CloudSnap, which is designed to support compressed  FlashArray snapshots in S3, StorReduce is focused on backup and restore services using S3 and is intended to operate with backup software to provide data protection

With StorReduce, FlashBlade and FlashArray data can be backed up to both on prem storage and StorReduce S3 storage. StorReduce data in S3 will be deduplicated and can be optionally replicated across 3 AWS regions/availability zones for high availability.

Significance

Many vendors are offering enterprise class storage services in public cloud environments. Most vendors offer both in public cloud and adjacent public cloud storage services. At the moment, Pure’s offerings operate strictly in AWS cloud. But in time, they could certainly add adjacent cloud storage as well. 

Although, Cloud Block Store and Cloud Snap (and StorReduce) operate only in AWS today, the same logic can apply to other public cloud environments. So, the other likely future delivery will be to offer these services to other public cloud providers.

[This storage announcement dispatch was originally sent out to our newsletter subscribers in November of 2018.  If you would like to receive this information via email please consider signing up for our free monthly newsletter (see subscription request, above right) and we will send our current issue along with download instructions for this and other reports. Dispatches are posted to our website at least a quarter or more after they are sent to our subscribers. Also we have recently updated (February 2019) our SAN Storage Buying Guide and our (April 2019) NAS Buying Guide so if you are interested in purchasing block or file storage, please checkout our Buying Guides available for sale on our website. ]  

Silverton Consulting, Inc., is a U.S.-based Storage, Strategy & Systems consulting firm offering products and services to the data storage community

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