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Dell EMC claims launch of first designed-for-all-flash SC arrays

All-flash arrays SC5020F and SC7020F boost performance by several times over existing former Compellent products in Dell EMC range that could be configured as all-flash

Dell EMC has launched the first versions of its SC storage arrays designed for all-flash.

SC arrays were previously sold primarily as hybrid flash storage, although it was possible to populate SC arrays as all-flash. Dell also sold its SC220 all-flash disk enclosure add-on.

Now, the all-flash SC5020F and SC7020F have boosted flash performance to 399,000 input/output operations per second (IOPS) per array, and up to 10x that per cluster of 10.

The SC5020F scales to 222 drives and 2PB, while the SC7020F scales to 500 drives and 3PB.

The performance boosts come from upgrades to 8-core Intel Xeon processors and 256GB of memory. There is multiprotocol (IE, block and file) support with 10Gbps iSCSI and 16/32GB Fibre Channel SAN connections.

Dell EMC has also decided to include previously-purchasable software options as standard. These include live migration, storage management and live volume management options.

But there is no option to add NVMe in any form, either as cache or a tier of storage.

Read more about all-flash

Dell EMC marketing vice-president Sam Grocott said: “You wouldn’t expect it in a midrange product, only in extremely high-performance use cases.”

“NVMe could go in the controller as cache but we don’t see the need in this segment of the market. To have NVMe as shared storage, you have to buy into proprietary NVMe formats right now, and Dell EMC is not interested in that,” he said.

The SC series arrays are the descendants of Compellent products, bought by Dell in 2011. Compellent was notable as a pioneer of automated tiered storage and has been retained as part of Dell EMC’s midrange storage offerings.

Meanwhile, Dell EMC has launched an upgrade to Unity v4.3 of its SME-targeted Unity storage arrays with the introduction of inline data deduplication, synchronous replication (previously, there was only ansynchronous) and online controller upgrades.

Unity arrays were launched in 2016 and are aimed at small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). They are all-flash and hybrid flash arrays built on a Linux OS on commodity hardware with services run from containers.

Also, Dell EMC has announced Unity customers will get access to Virtustream cloud storage capacity of 10% of that bought in hardware products. Unity has cloud tiering built in, but this is yet to be added to SC products.

At the same time, Dell EMC has offered Unity and SC customers a three-year money-back guarantee (with published restrictions), a minimum 4:1 data reduction ratio (for specified application/use cases) and the ability to trade in existing hardware for credits against other Dell EMC storage products.

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