Converged Infrastructure for Big Data Storage and Analytics

It’s no secret that unstructured data is growing rapidly and poses significant challenges to organizations across virtually every industry segment to store, manage, secure and protect their data. According to IDC, the total amount of data storage world-wide will reach 133 exabytes by the year 2017, of which 80 percent will be required for unstructured data.

Unstructured Data Growth

To meet this challenge, VCE has just introduced a compelling new converged infrastructure (CI) platform – VCE™ Technology Extension for EMC® Isilon® – for organizations looking to consolidate and modernize their big data environment. With this technology extension, existing VCE Vblock® Systems can leverage Isilon’s massive scalability and built-in multi-protocol data access capabilities to easily expand capacity to address large-scale data storage needs while supporting a wide range of applications and traditional and next-gen workloads including Hadoop data analytics.

Isilon Scale Out Data Lake

With VCE technology extension for EMC Isilon as a foundational element of a scale-out data lake infrastructure, organizations can eliminate costly storage silos, streamline management, increase data protection and gain more value from their big data assets. A great example of this is in the area of big data analytics and Hadoop. As the first and only scale-out NAS platform that natively integrates with the Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS), Isilon is a game-changing big data storage and analytics platform.

Before Isilon came into the picture, Hadoop deployments have largely been implemented on a dedicated infrastructure, not integrated with any other applications, and based on direct attached storage (DAS) that is typically mirrored up to three times or more. In addition to requiring a separate capital investment and added management resources, this approach poses a number of other inefficiencies. By leveraging Isilon’s native HDFS support and in-place analytics capabilities, organizations can avoid capital expenditures and related risks and costs associated with a separate, dedicated Hadoop infrastructure by extending the Vblock System-based environments.

Isilon’s in-place analytics approach also eliminates the time and resources required to replicate big data into a separate infrastructure. For example, it can take over 24 hours to copy 100 TB of data over a 10GE line. Instead, with VCE technology extension for EMC Isilon, data analytics projects can be initiated immediately to get results in a matter of minutes. And when data changes, analytics jobs can quickly be re-run with no need to re-ingest updated data.

VCE technology extension for EMC Isilon also leverages Isilon’s ability to support multiple instances of Apache Hadoop distributions from different vendors simultaneously including Pivotal HD, Cloudera Enterprise and Hortonworks Data Platform. These same data sets on EMC Isilon can be extended to other analytics such as SAS and Splunk. This means that organizations gain the flexibility to use whichever tools they need for their analytics projects.

Along with these powerful big data storage and analytics capabilities, VCE technology extension for EMC Isilon brings the convenience and assurance of proven VCE engineering expertise. VCE’s technology extensions are tightly integrated and fully tested and validated. This allows organizations to quickly increase processing power or add storage capacity, without typical technology risks.

All-in-all, VCE technology extension for EMC Isilon does indeed look like a compelling approach to help tame the big data storage challenge and unlock the value of big data assets. Please let us know what you think.

About the Author: Michael Noble