When You Want to Go Fast, Ensuring System Balance Should Be Top of Mind

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With the Hungarian Grand Prix recently completed, we’re now three-quarters of the way through the 2019 F1 season.  For those that have been watching, myself included, the current season has been a real treat.  Germany brought us one of the most chaotic races I’ve ever seen; not least of which was a full 360-degree spin by the eventual winner. And with some strong finishes in their past three races, McLaren is showing real promise.  No doubt it’s going to be an exciting race to the season finish line.

Out of the multitude of things to enjoy when watching such technologically advanced machines do things that seem fairly unbelievable, one of my favourites is that a car’s performance on the track relies on such a vast array of technologies, business operational acumen, and personal character.  Drivers always get a significant amount of the glory, but each of them knows that thousands of factors contribute to winning a race. Extending that premise to the vehicle itself — a remarkably complicated machine that defines the cutting-edge of automotive technology — I’ve had direct interaction with some of these engineers who have told me there is something that can be even more important than raw power to give their drivers the best chance at making the top of the podium.  Perfect balance.  

Think about it – if the engine is too powerful and the brakes are too weak, the car is going to take too long in the breaking phase of the track.  And if the downforce is dialled up too high, the car will not have the top speed needed to perform well on the straightaways.   It’s one of the reasons why even with strict regulations to homogenize the cars, the number of configuration options ensures each one is truly unique. 

This exact concept could be extended to other advanced technology systems– for example, a modern storage solution.  Let’s say that you have a storage system that can do exceptionally fast reads, but fairly slow writes.  For a handful of use cases this might be adequate, but as most storage solutions support multiple workflows, most managers look to achieve balance between both operations.  As another example, let’s say there is exceptional data connectivity between the storage controllers and the underlying storage media, but the clients are not optimized across the network.  Again, the system will not be balanced, and overall performance will suffer. 

Today, Quantum is launching our next release of StorNext, and much of this release has to do with a handful of improvements that are fine tuning and better balancing this racing machine for even faster performance.  With 6.3, we are optimizing StorNext clients to work even better with our NVMe storage systems, thereby creating a more optimized data path between the client and shared storage environment.  Another important improvement has to do with object read path management and giving administrators a new ability to manage system resources when dealing with heavy object read or write operations.  Taken together, enhancements such as these demonstrate Quantum is not letting our foot off the pedal when it comes to making our file system an even better performer. 

For even more information on our StorNext 6.3 release, feel free to contact us — we’d be delighted to tell you more.  And in the meantime, enjoy the summer, and here’s to an exciting conclusion to this year’s F1 season!  

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