As part of a comprehensive strategy to address virtualization within the enterprise, Dell has launched two new EqualLogic hybrid storage arrays that combine solid-state storage with traditional rotating disks.
The Dell EqualLogic PS6510ES and PS6500ES hybrid storage arrays will ship in the fourth quarter at an undisclosed price, Travis Vigil, Dell’s executive director for Dell Storage, said as part of a virtualization “chalk talk” in San Francisco Aug. 21.
Dell also announced two new “zero clients,” or thin clients without local storage—the better to prevent the unauthorized harvesting of critical enterprise data in the event of loss or theft. Because a zero client virtualizes everything, the hardware becomes a dumb brick when powered off. Contrast that with a thin client, which includes a small bit of local storage for caching and downloads, which means a bit of data can be harvested even after it’s been powered down.
Dell also delivered three new desktop virtualization reference architectures, validated in conjunction with VMware.
Dell has optimized the new EqualLogic servers for tiered workloads, and designed them to go hand-in-hand with the zero-client or existing thin-client devices: placing frequently-used data on the SSD alongside lower-latency information on the spinning hard drive. Dell referred to the EqualLogic hardware as “hybrid” devices, probably referring to the “hybrid” hard drives manufactured by Seagate that combine a small flash memory cache with a traditional rotating disk.
The PS6500ES includes 7 400-GB SSDs, combined with 41 2-Tbyte NL-SAS drives spinning at 7,200 RPM., pumping data through a Gigabit Ethernet controller. The PS6510ES is identical, albeit with the addition of a 10-Gbit Ethernet controller. In total, there are 85 Tbytes per array and two petabytes per Dell EqualLogic group.
Compared to other EqualLogic storage solutions such as the PS6510X, which only use traditional hard drives, the new models can deliver a 360 percent improvement in IOPS and 75 percent reduction in latency.
The key to the PS65xx family is the load balancer, which will shift data onto the higher-performance SSD when necessary. “If you can imagine with a virtual desktop deployment, workers come in at eight or nine and boots up their machines,” Vigil said. “Wouldn’t it be nice if those images were on the SSD then and then on the lower-performance disk for the rest of the day, providing performance when they need it and available capacity when they need it?”
The new arrays come with Dell EqualLogic Host Integration Tools for VMware 3.5, which provide centralized EqualLogic management from VMware vCenter Server plus new storage recovery replica capabilities. Unsurprisingly, the solutions will be on display at VMworld next week.
Naturally, the proliferation of cloud-dependent devices on the desktop and in the mobile space means that enterprises and other customers will have to dedicate more resources on the cloud. That’s especially true in the context of the aforementioned “zero-client” devices.
Dell announced two new zero clients optimized for VMware View, the Dell Wyse P25 and P45, capable of outputting to either two or four displays, respectively. The P45 can drive two displays with resolutions of 2560 x 1600, or two displays at 1920 x 1280 each—making them capable of displaying 3D CAM applications at the very least. Each has about five times the pixel performance of its predecessors, said Jeff McNaught, executive director of marketing and chief strategy officer for Dell Wyse Cloud Client Computing.
Dell also unveiled three reference architectures designed for VMware View: a VStart for VDI reference architecture, the Dell Mobile Clinical Computing VMware AlwaysOn Point of Care Reference Architecture for healthcare professionals, and the Dell DVS Enterprise VMware Mobile Secure Desktop Reference Architecture that delivers session persistence across personal desktops.