In my job I am exposed to hundreds of new technology solutions every month. Some of these self-proclaimed “game changing ideas” are either “me too” solutions which follow others’ lead and compete on price or a couple of features. Other new ideas are so esoteric I am incapable of understanding why they even exist. However, every now and then I come across something that forces me to sit up and take notice. With no small amount of fanfare, Cirtas Systems recently released their Bluejet Cloud Storage Controller based on Dell hardware and when I learned about what it is and what it does, I couldn’t help but take notice.Taking the concept of cloud based storage, with all the efficiencies of scale, reliability, resiliency, and reduced liabilities it can bring, Cirtas seamlessly connects mid-market enterprises to the cloud while providing the performance of local network storage. The device provides caching, WAN optimization, de-duplication, and other features that both accelerate the performance of cloud storage and reduce the fees associated with using it. Even better, it adds features to cloud storage, such as thin provisioning and snapshots, which had previously been the reserve of expensive enterprise storage systems. The Cirtas Bluejet even aggregates multiple cloud providers to a single node on the network.Working with the Dell OEM Solutions, the Bluejet appliance comes configured and ready to install. Built upon Dell’s OEM-Ready server platform, Cirtas provides world class reliability, supportability, and manageability to their customers. With Dell’s help Cirtas is able to bring their brilliant innovations in the software realm to a hardware solution which assures their customers have the best experience with their solution.It is great to see such refreshing innovative solutions hitting the market.Learn more about Dell OEM Solutions at www.dell.com/oem.
While our Dell EMC HPC team spends this busy week meeting with countless customers, partners and fellow industry leaders at SC16, I think back to our participation at SC15 last year and how much we’ve accomplished in one lightning fast year.At last year’s annual HPC industry conference, we said we were going to disrupt, democratize and drive industry differentiation in a way that takes what we’ve learned from the most sophisticated research institutions and government agency supercomputers, and making it easier for a broader set of organizations and businesses to benefit and transform from HPC systems in this digital world.Based on that declaration, we have significantly grown our business. In fact, leading HPC market firm Intersect360 Research just declared that Dell EMC holds THE #1 position in total HPC revenue share heading into 2017. With the HPC market comprised primarily of servers and storage, it doesn’t hurt to also be #1 in both of these key markets. As Michael Dell said at this October’s Dell EMC World, Dell Technologies’ unique structure allows us to be nimble and innovative, like a start-up, but at the scale of a global power house. For our customers, this means we offer a technology partner that can be #1 in everything, all in one place. With this latest HPC leadership, our #1s continue to rack-up!I couldn’t be more proud of our team’s accomplishments. Not every company can be #1, much less #1 in so many markets. Watch what our CMO, Jeremy Burton, has to say here on what this means for our customers.Dell EMC is a tier one solutions provider that can help meet HPC customer needs, from desktops to petaflops, with a portfolio ranging from workstations to supercomputers. We’ve grown our HPC business by focusing on vertical markets including research, life sciences and manufacturing and through expanding and developing close industry partnerships.But it’s not only about the portfolio. At the core, we have excellent talent—our team includes some of the brightest minds and true HPC and vertical industry experts with histories of working on the most challenging and powerful systems around the world. And our partner ecosystem has never been stronger.We’re also continuing to build an incredible HPC test bed for customers. For example, our own “Zenith” system, which ranks #372 on this week’s latest TOP500 list, was built from Dell EMC PowerEdge servers with partner technologies as an available resource for customers to test their workload results on the latest, leading HPC technologies.We’ve helped several customers stand up new systems this year – from unveiling of the fastest supercomputer on the continent of Africa, the Centre for High Performance Computing’s (CHPC) “Lengau” system to working with the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) at The University of Texas at Austin on “Stampede 2,” a strategic national resource to provide HPC capabilities for thousands of researchers across the U.S.At Dell EMC, we’re looking forward to helping more customers reduce their time to results and generate new breakthroughs. We’ll continue to help pave the way by focusing on delivering innovative infrastructure while eliminating complexity, so customers can spend less time on building and managing their HPC systems and more time focused on their results.At the end of the day, we’re developing solutions and providing insights to enable human potential, to make the next discovery, find the next cure and develop innovations to improve our everyday lives.If you’re at SC16 this week, please swing by our booth #1217 to meet our HPC team and see the demos! If you weren’t able to make it, learn more here, and consider joining the Dell EMC HPC Community. We look forward to talking with you soon!
Stephanie Rankin remembers the doctor appointment like it was yesterday: Her son, Beorn, was five months old. She was worried. His eyes didn’t seem to track things like they should. The doctor saw the same – but said the baby’s eyes seemed fine. He was more concerned about the baby’s brain.Rankin never imagined she’d leave that office with an urgent need to see a neurologist – the start to a long journey that would eventually lead to Beorn’s rare disease diagnosis: a DNM1 gene mutation.It took nearly 10 years to get to this diagnosis. In the meantime, Beorn experienced seizures and went through many biopsies and tests. Beorn’s gene mutation was difficult to diagnose. Rankin is filled with emotion when she recalls that time in her and her family’s life.“You live day by day. You continue tests. Because you don’t know what he has, it’s hard to place meds and therapies with that,” Rankin explains. While she wanted to join support groups to talk with other moms and research Beorn’s condition on her own, Rankin felt lost without a diagnosis.This is the type of challenge facing researchers at the Translational Genomics Research Institute’s (TGen) Center for Rare Childhood Disorders. Every day, TGen bioinformaticians, geneticists, and clinicians perform genetic sequencing in an effort to identify diseases and help more people survive them.To accurately diagnose disorders, TGen relies on a Dell-designed high-performance computing (HPC) solution to quickly run extremely complex algorithms that analyze multiple terabytes of genetic and molecular data on a patient. The right amount of server performance, storage capacity, network bandwidth and availability are all critical.In 2013, a team of TGen researchers – led by Drs. Matt Huentelman and Vinodh Narayanan – used this Dell technology to analyze the genetic sequencing data from the Rankin family in order to diagnose their son with a mutation in the DNM1 gene.Beorn and Stephanie Rankin and their son, Beorn, talk with Dr. Vinodh Narayanan.According to Dr. Narayanan, genetic testing has come a long way since the Rankin family began what he calls their “diagnostic odyssey” in 2005.“At that time, we were able to examine all the chromosomes under a microscope to see if there were gross structural changes. This would be akin to looking at the earth from outer space and trying to determine if a leaf had fallen off a tree in a forest in California,” he says.“Now, we can look at the spelling of a person’s genomic DNA at the individual letter level – so that’s a million-fold change in resolution. We are able to do this because of the super-computing power that is at TGen. This is thanks to Dell and Dell support.”Better optics and faster computers means genomic analysis at a level that enables development of new drugs that target specific genetic mutations. Dr. Narayanan and the Rankin family are now focusing on what new treatments may be best for Beorn. View the video to learn more about TGen and Beorn’s story.https://youtu.be/UzZ_OODpAB4Although there is still no cure for her son’s disease, Rankin still feels like a burden has been lifted.“We didn’t have a diagnosis forever or have a way to help him or advocate for him. There was so much of just not knowing,” Rankin says. “I worried about my other children. If they were to get married do they have to worry about their kids having what he has? Now we know it was a spontaneous mutation. It wasn’t something that is in our genes.”A more connected world also factors into how TGen is advancing cancer care – and how Beorn’s diagnosis may benefit other families.Dr. Narayanan applauds Rankin for her work in cultivating a strong social network of parents with kids affected by mutations in the DNM1 gene. These parents share things with each other like what physical therapy has helped, what medications have been effective, and so on. The team at TGen has collected and studied biospecimens from some of the children within this network, in order to gain insight into this rare disorder.“Finally having a diagnosis means now you have this outside family,” Rankin says.Beorn is now 12-years-old. He likes activity, noise and affection – and he gets plenty of it all, as one of five kids in the Rankin family.“Beorn is so sweet and being his mom is really rewarding,” Rankin says. “He has taught us all a lot.”Caption: Beorn (between his parents) is surrounded by his family. Behind couch – from left: Jenavieve, Cedric, Caleb. On couch – from left: D’Averic, Beorn Sr. (Dad), Beorn, Stephanie (Mom), dogs Midnight and Jake.As part of our work with TGen, we learn about remarkable young patients, and their families with extraordinary courage. Meet more of these special people here.Explore more on delltechnologies.com:CUSTOMER STORY: Speed is imperative in the fight against rare diseases. For Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) and its Center for Rare Childhood Disorders, the Phoenix-based research and treatment center, shortening the “diagnostic odyssey” is only the beginning. This customer story includes a video about TGen and Beorn.TRAILBLAZERS PODCAST: From X-Rays to wearables, better healthcare means peering deeper into the human body. Join Walter and guests Dr. Daniel Kraft, Reenita Das, Dr. Jeffrey Trent, Anne Wojcicki and Dr. Giselle Sholler as they explore how wellness is becoming more personal, and more proactive.This article shares one example of how Dell is committed to driving human progress by putting our technology and expertise to work where it can do the most good for people and the planet. We call this our Legacy of Good.Explore our FY17 Annual update on our 2020 Legacy of Good Plan at legacyodgood.dell.com.
As the General Manager of the Dell EMC VMAX business unit, I interact with a variety of customers on a daily basis. It is very clear to me that today’s IT practitioners are increasingly relying on All-Flash storage to consolidate their ever-increasing, performance-hungry workloads amid the explosive growth of data. Given the adoption rate, we expect that over half of all data centers will use only All-Flash arrays for primary data storage within the next three to five years. While there are many All-Flash solutions out there in the market, clearly all are not created equal!We have architected Dell EMC VMAX All Flash arrays to solve the CIO challenge of embracing a modernized flash-centric datacenter for mission-critical applications while simultaneously simplifying, automating, and consolidating IT operations. VMAX All Flash combines the best of new high-density flash technologies with a proven set of rich data services required to build a modern data center. Simultaneously, it continues to deliver the reliability and mission-critical availability that VMAX customers have relied on for more than two decades.Earlier this month, we sat down with 12 independent storage industry experts at a Storage Field Day event and discussed the core architectural tenets of VMAX All Flash that are helping 94% of Fortune 50 companies, 18 out of 20 top banks, 9 out of 10 top life insurance companies and thousands of other customers to manage data growth, reduce data center sprawl, deliver extreme performance and availability while meeting their business SLAs day in and day out. Needless to say, they were impressed! Check out the entire set of VMAX All Flash video recordings at the Storage Field Day 14 site.Figure 1: VMAX All Flash Architectural Details (Video from Storage Field Day)And we are not afraid of going head-to-head against our competition in a public setting!Recently, Principled Technologies evaluated VMAX 250F All Flash and HPE 3PAR 8450 side-by-side with an eye towards how these arrays can handle mixed workloads in a modern data center as well as deliver business continuity in the event of an interruption. Both the arrays were configured with the same number of controllers and similar number of disks/capacity to make it an apples-to-apples comparison.The tests started with performance testing for Oracle Database 12c transactional workloads. Next, a data mart workload was added to determine how the arrays handle this mixed workload. Data marts are a convenient way to move chunks of data from multiple departments to one centralized location that’s easy to access. Businesses rely on the smooth flow of data mart information for reporting, analysis, trending, presentations, and database backups. Ability to consolidate transactional workloads as well as data warehouse sequential workloads on the same platform is a cornerstone of an All-Flash array to serve as the core primary storage platform in today’s data centers.Figure 2: VMAX 250F and 3PAR 8450 IOPS Before and During Data Mart Load AdditionPrincipled Technologies determined that the VMAX 250F handled 39.5% more IOPS on average than the 3PAR 8450 during the data mart load. The VMAX solution handled both reads and writes much faster than the 3PAR solution during the data mart load – up to 145% faster reads and 1,973% faster writes than the HPE solution! The 3PAR 8450 storage array experienced lengthy delays when processing reads and writes at the same time with the added data mart load – read latency increased 129% while write latency increased 2,133%!Figure 3: VMAX 250F and 3PAR 8450 Latency Before and During Data Mart Load AdditionSo what does this mean for you? With the VMAX 250F, you can run your production workloads while always meeting your SLAs and never worry about whether adding an analytics workload, compiling large amounts of data from multiple sources, or performing an extensive backup would affect the performance. With 3PAR 8450, it’s not the same story – long wait times on accessing data when you run mixed workloads will surely frustrate your users and hamper your business.VMAX All Flash SRDF: The Gold Standard for Remote ReplicationThe second phase of Principled Technologies’ comparison of the Dell EMC and HPE 3PAR All-Flash storage involved remote replication and disaster recovery. For the Dell EMC solution, they used Unisphere for VMAX to set up two VMAX 250F arrays with active-active SRDF/Metro remote replication. For the HPE 3PAR solution, they set up one 3PAR 8450 array and one 3PAR 8400 array with Remote Copy and Peer Persistence (which is only available as active-passive at the LUN level) enabled.When Principled Technologies initiated a lost host connection to both the local arrays, the entire workload on the VMAX 250F solution continued to run with no downtime following the outage and all I/O shifting immediately to the remote VMAX 250F. In contrast, the application workload on the 3PAR solution needed to transfer 100% of the I/O to the secondary (passive) site and stopped until they restarted the VM. SRDF/Metro is a true active-active solution, which ensured consistent data access during their site failure. HPE’s Peer Persistence is active-passive at the LUN level. So, during their local storage failure simulation, all the paths were inaccessible until the standby paths to the remote array became active or they restored the connection to the local system and failback occurred. This means the difference between having consistent data access during a site failure or not.Check out all the details of the Principled Technologies testing and their findings.In the end, Principled Technologies discerned that Dell EMC VMAX 250F All Flash storage array lived up to its promises better than the HPE 3PAR 8450 storage array did. We are not surprised – thousands of customers reach the same conclusion day in and day out not only when compared against HPE 3PAR but also against all of our All-Flash enterprise storage competition!Learn more about VMAX All Flash.
Just like in Gene Roddenberry’s “Star Trek,” where the Borg subsumed all other races with the tag line “resistance is futile,” programmable fabrics are fast becoming the inevitable way of the future; and whether we consume them underneath a more traditional full stack router or more directly using modern day programmable fabric controllers, they are set to become a part of the networking fabric.Programmable fabrics have been predicted to revolutionize the network space for quite some time; however, we’re now seeing several key drivers that point to this technology becoming a reality sooner rather than later.There are four major use cases:Next Generation Network Fabric: providing a traffic engineered, multi-tenanted and scalable network fabric that doesn’t suffer from the problems with today’s mixed overlay/underlay fabrics.5G and Edge: converging and offloading fixed and wireless services at the edge and in the process reducing latency, jitter, power and space and freeing up server cores for new edge applications.Telemetry & Autonomous networks: using in-band telemetry to drive more consistent and intelligent forwarding decisions in the fabric.Automation: enabling CI/CD pipelines to roll network changes into production more quickly, reliably and efficiently.These drivers require a different architectural approach for the network fabric than has been required in the past. The traditional router/switch architecture running a full stack of routing protocols on each network device will be instead moved more centrally to run atop a fabric controller for that domain. They will still be interacting with other existing domains using traditional routing protocols, but allowing the above use cases within their programmable fabric domain as shown in the following diagram (note: the NG-SDN Domain is the programmable fabric):While these programmable fabric domains may initially be introduced into smaller areas of the telecommunication provider’s network like the access or edge networks, over time they’ll likely be joined, and we may see a hierarchy of controllers used to control the end to end network similar to Google’s global SDN networks.What is a “Programmable Fabric”?A “Programmable Fabric” is the next generation of the Software Defined Network (i.e. ONF’s NG-SDN) in that it allows programmability all the way down to the forwarding pipeline. This programmability can then be used by network functions, allowing them to be fully disaggregated and virtualized and truly defined in software to deploy where and as needed in the network. Programmable Fabrics are the inevitable next step in the next generation of networks.Dell Technologies is helping our Telecommunication Service Providers in the following ways:More cost efficient: Use of merchant silicon with strategic vendor support will help manage costs while scaling the network.More Open: An open and standards-based solution will allow the service provider to take advantage of industry innovations more easily while ensuring no vendor lock-in and will be key to driving down costs in the network.Multi-tenanted: The ability to define multiple different virtual networks in software on the same physical network for the purposes of multiple tenants or applications while keeping all the other characteristics required by a service provider (i.e. traffic engineering and telemetry).Traffic engineered: The ability to allow tenants or applications to signal priority and resourcing to the network and have the network provide that service (i.e. bandwidth, latency, jitter, specified path, redundancy characteristics).Telemetry: In-band telemetry that allows real time recording of packet metrics (i.e. latency, jitter, drops) on a per session basis is key to the operational support of the solution.Intelligent Control Loop Feedback: Machine learning can be applied to the telemetry being received from the network to provide intelligent control loop feedback to prevent or repair network failures and ensure the network is being operated correctly and efficiently.Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD): Will be key to allowing service providers to integrate changes more easily and quickly into the network, allowing full operational readiness tests to be carried out before changes are deployed into a production network.Network Function offload: The ability to offload the user plane portion of network functions into the programmable fabric (BNG for fixed or UPF for wireless subscriber termination are examples of network functions that could be offloaded into the programmable fabric).Dell Technologies is committed to helping our Telecommunication customers build the fastest, most reliable network while ensuring they are seeing a return on their investment.
ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) — Algeria has launched its coronavirus vaccination campaign in the city where the country’s first COVID-19 case was confirmed in March. The North African nation is using Russia’s Sputnik-V vaccine, and a 65-year-old retiree received the first shot Saturday at a hospital in Blida. Health authorities were on hand for the event. Vaccines will get administered in all regions of the country starting Sunday with health care workers, elderly adults and other vulnerable populations. Algerians were frustrated this month by repeated delays after promises of an imminent vaccine rollout. Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has been convalescing from COVID-19 side effects for over a month at an undisclosed location in Germany.
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — SpaceX’s second full test flight of its bullet-shaped Starship has ended in another fiery crash landing. Elon Musk’s company launched its latest Starship prototype from the southeastern tip of Texas on Tuesday. The shiny stainless steel rocket reached its intended altitude of more than six miles over the Gulf of Mexico. Everything seemed to be going well as Starship flipped on its side and began its descent. But it never managed to straighten itself back up for a landing and slammed into the ground just like the previous Starship did back in December. Musk is developing Starship to carry people to Mars.