VMWARE

Lightbits Labs Delivers Industry’s First Software-Defined NVMe/TCP Storage Solution for VMware

Lightbits Labs | October 01, 2021

Lightbits Labs Delivers Industry’s First Software-Defined NVMe/TCP Storage Solution for VMware
Lightbits Labs a leader in NVMe-based, scalable and software-defined elastic block storage that is fully optimized on Intel hardware for private and edge clouds, today announced that it has successfully completed a rigorous certification of LightOS® with VMware vSphere® 7 Update 3 and will be listed on the VMware Compatibility Guide. LightOS software-defined storage, fueled by 3rd Generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors with built in AI accelerators, Intel Optane Persistent memory (PMem) and 100Gb Intel Ethernet 800 Series Network Adapters, offers the ultimate in performance, resilience, and scalability for VMware vSphere® while lowering cost.

Lightbits pioneered NVMe/TCP, developing a disaggregated storage solution that is easy to deploy at scale, while delivering performance that is similar to local flash. As a VMware Technology Alliance Partner and design partner, Lightbits has been collaborating with VMware on development and testing of the new vSphere NVMe/TCP feature. Supporting native NVMe/TCP in VMware vSphere is a major step toward delivering an end-to-end NVMe solutions ecosystem.

“Enterprise IT organizations supporting ESXi workloads, want access to the latest technologies to stay ahead in a highly competitive marketplace. Working with Lightbits and Intel, VMware is advancing its storage support with a strong roadmap for the NVMe over Fabrics (NVMe-oF) technology that gives data centers unprecedented remote access to NVMe storage. The addition of support for NVMe/TCP ensures that VMware hosts can better support modern applications that need high IOPS, low latency block storage solutions that offer large capacity and high density per storage server.”

Said Paul Turner, Vice President Product Management vSphere, VMware

LightOS supercharges VMware environments with these benefits:
  • Simple: It’s easy to consume over TCP/IP networks using standard protocols and drivers. Seamlessly integrates into existing infrastructure and VMware environments.
  • Flexible: software only, disaggregated architecture allows for independent scaling of storage and compute. Runs on commodity hardware of customer’s choosing for a broad range of use cases.
  • High-Performance: Featuring Intel Xeon Scalable processors with Intel DL Boost, Intel Optane PMem, and Intel Ethernet 800 Series Network Adapters with ADQ technology, LightOS delivers high IOPS and low latency with performance that is equivalent to local flash without proprietary hardware and rigid capacity and performance constraints.
  • Lower TCO: Coupling Intel’s high-performance hardware platform with LightOS optimized for low-cost QLC SSDs, data reduction features dramatically improve efficiency, and disaggregated architecture maximizes resource utilization. Also, no hypervisor is required on storage nodes.
  • Highly Available: Rich data services such as SSD-level Elastic RAID, per-volume replication, multi-tenancy, snapshots, clones, remote monitoring, and more that result in highly resilient, high availability storage that extends across the entire virtualized platform.
Supporting Quotes

Remi El-Ouazzane, Chief Strategy Officer, Datacenter and AI Group, Intel Corporation
“To overcome customer challenges requires addressing both hardware and software infrastructure in the data center, and partnerships with innovators like VMware and Lightbits strengthens our position to deliver complete solutions to solve those challenges. Intel’s platform breadth of high-performance technologies for the data center such as Intel Xeon Scalable processors, Intel Optane Persistent memory and Intel Ethernet 800 Series Network Adapters are essential to deliver on the promise of NVMe/TCP. The integration of LightOS with Intel technology, especially for VMware environments provides private-cloud infrastructure and cloud service providers customers with an optimized cost-efficient, lower TCO storage solution while maintaining high performance and very low latency.”

Christos Karamanolis, Lightbits Labs Advisory Board Member
“This platform will provide core benefits to any organization that needs to increase the scale and utilization of their infrastructure, whether in financial services or other industries. LightOS enables data centers to take full advantage of NVMe/TCP. And when combined with the VMware ESXi and Intel hardware, organizations can rapidly and easily set up high-performance, scalable storage using the data center network they already have in place. For vSphere users who want flexibility, high availability, and high performance in a package that is easy to consume—this solution is compelling.”

Eric Burgener, Vice President of Research, IDC
“Digital transformation and the move to more data-driven business models is well underway at most enterprises today. To enable agility and better meet the performance, scalability, availability and efficiency requirements, enterprises are modernizing their storage infrastructures and moving to more server-based, software-defined architectures that support NVMe and cloud technologies. We envision NVMe/TCP as being an enabler of cost-effective high-performance disaggregated storage architectures similar to what hyperscalers are using. This announcement makes available an off-the-shelf solution that delivers the same set of performance, availability, scalability, and efficiency benefits for enterprise IT organizations supporting virtualized environments that's on par with the hyperscalers.”

“Digital leaders turn to Equinix for high performance, foundational infrastructure that can be deployed globally and on-demand,” said Zac Smith, Managing Director, Equinix Metal. “For years, NVMe/TCP has offered the promise of improved performance, increased deployment flexibility, and better cost efficiency through ‘hyperscale-style’ disaggregation of storage and compute, so we’re excited to see Lightbits, VMware, and Intel collaborating to bring this capability to our customers.”

“With the explosion of data underway, companies are committing to digital transformation on a massive scale. To extract the value of this data, applications need to rapidly store, access, and analyze data. Over the past few years private clouds and cloud service providers have been running cloud native applications on Lightbits, benefiting from our Kubernetes integration. Now we are super-excited to have a high performance, highly available storage solution also for VMware users, with in-box support for NVMe/TCP,” said Kam Eshghi, Chief Strategy Officer at Lightbits. “Organizations with private clouds and hybrid clouds, as well as cloud service providers and financial service providers can now realize the performance, scalability, and cost-efficiency benefits of a combined solution from VMware, Lightbits, and Intel.”

LightOS is a scalable, efficient NVMe/TCP storage solution with intelligent flash management that improves flash endurance by up to 20X. It’s easy to deploy at scale and delivers performance that is equivalent to local flash. A single LightOS cluster can deliver over 40M IOPS (random Read) and 10PB user capacity, with less than 200μs latency. Organizations previously utilizing iSCSI can instead use NVMe/TCP on the same network infrastructure and realize much higher performance. In addition to high performance, LightOS offers rich data services such as multi-tenancy, thin-provisioning, snapshots, clones, remote monitoring, dynamic rebalancing, and more that result in highly resilient storage that extends across the entire virtualized platform.

Lightbits, VMware, and Intel will jointly present a virtual breakout session, “Cloud Everywhere Transformation: NVMe/TCP Operating Models on Data Center and Cloud,” at VMworld 2021

About Lightbits Labs
Lightbits Labs is leading the digital data center transformation in the enterprise by delivering scalable and efficient cloud-optimized, software-defined elastic block storage (EBS) on-premises that is easy to consume. Pioneers of the NVMe™ over TCP (NVMe/TCP) protocol, making low latency application access available to enterprise IT organizations supporting high-performance databases, big data analytics, and web-scale environments using either virtual or container-based architectures. Lightbits LightOS storage is designed to maximize the utility of NVMe, for IT organizations who want simplicity, performance, and flexibility for their Private and Edge clouds.

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