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Western Digital Intros New Storage Products for the Data Center


Western Digital has announced its enhanced OpenFlex Data24 3200 NVMe-oF JBOF/Storage Platform along with the next-generation RapidFlex A2000 and C2000 NVMe-oF fabric bridge devices (FBDs), and the new Ultrastar DC SN655 PCIe Gen 4.0 dual-port NVMe SSD. These new storage solutions, according to the company, are enabling an ecosystem, providing more flexibility and choice for simplifying NVMe and NVMe-oF deployment for customers. Western Digital is now the only company with vertical integration capabilities targeting both ends of the Ethernet wire to deliver solutions where data travels from the server initiator to the storage target.

The Western Digital OpenFlex Data24 3200 is a fully integrated NVMe-oF storage platform that extends the performance of NVMe flash to a shared storage architecture. By separating storage resources from compute, and sharing them over Ethernet, OpenFlex Data24 becomes widely available to multiple applications and servers, allowing for greater resource control and scalability, leading to improved storage utilization without overprovisioning.

Using RapidFlex FBDs, the Data24 3200 allows up to six hosts to be attached without a switch. A switched environment allows scaling even more hosts and Data24 platforms, providing scale-out or scale-up capabilities from hundreds of terabytes to petabytes of NVMe flash with very low application latency. In addition to RDMA over converged Ethernet (RoCE), the enhanced Data24 now features new TCP connection support. Available in a 2U 24-bay platform and backed with a 5-year limited warranty, the Data24 3200 is built to deliver low power, high availability and enterprise-class reliability with up to 368TB in a single platform of low-latency dual-port PCIe Gen 4.0 SSDs.

The RapidFlex family of NVMe over fabric bridge devices provide the foundational building blocks for OEMs/ODMs and large organizations taking a DIY approach to their software-defined infrastructure to enable next-generation workloads based on highly scalable shared storage across an Ethernet fabric. These second-generation low-power, high-performance FBDs come in two versions: the RapidFlex A2000 controller, and the RapidFlex C2000 that places the A2000 chip on a PCI adapter for powering solutions like the new OpenFlex Data24.

The new RapidFlex FBD is a unique state machine that exports the PCI bus over Ethernet, allowing externally connected SSDs to appear as if they were local to the server. The new family also doubles performance with an additional 100 GbE port (2x100Gb ethernet ports) matched to 16 lanes of PCIe Gen 4.0, and provides a PCIe root complex within all NVMe all-flash arrays, making it easy to qualify and deploy. The A2000 and C2000 FBDs add initiator mode capability to the existing target mode capability so customers can now deploy more cost-effective and lower power initiator cards in their servers instead of a conventional Ethernet NIC for NVMe-oF connectivity. 

The Ultrastar DC SN655 is a cost-effective, dual-port, high-capacity PCIe Gen 4.0 NVMe SSD designed for cloud, OEM and enterprise customers who need high-performance, high-capacity storage for a variety of applications and workloads such as disaggregated storage, object storage, storage servers and other mission-critical applications.

The Ultrastar DC SN655 is a vertically integrated SSD that provides a simple, scalable, single-port or dual-port path to ensure continuous data access for enterprise high-availability requirements. It also expands capacities from new 3.84TB to 15.36TB targeting both storage and mixed workload compute applications and increases drive reliability to 2.5 million hours of mean time between failures (projected). Additionally, the SN655 reaches more than one million maximum random read IOPs and enhanced Quality of Service (QoS) for large unstructured workloads. In comes in a drop-in U.3 15mm form factor and is U.2 backwards compatible. The SN655 also offers additional enterprise features like power-fail protection and end-to-end data path protection to ensure data is available when needed.

“With NVMe disaggregated storage becoming the reality, along with the exponential growth of data, our goal is to provide data architects with reliable and trusted SSDs and simplified NVMe-oF solutions to help them future-proof their storage strategy and deliver uncompromised performance at scale to meet the ever-changing workload demands,” said Kurt Chan, vice president and general manager of Western Digital’s Platforms business. “When combining RapidFlex and Ultrastar into the Data24, Western Digital gives organizations a transformative, next-generation way to share flash and bring greater value to their business.”

Prarthana Mary

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