This is certainly our biggest announcement of the year so far; just possibly the biggest since I showed up here in 2004. The official name is the “Sun Storage 7000” and there are three systems in the line-up. As usual, the real actual technology news is in the blogs; the hub is at the Storage News blog, but I’d start with the co-conspirators: Bryan Cantrill’s Fishworks: Now it can be told and Mike Shapiro’s Introducing the Sun Storage 7000 Series. I have some opinions too.

I’ve been talking to this project for a long time, enjoying visits to their top-secret headquarters featuring genuine startup grunge on a middle floor of an anonymous building in downtown San Fran with no Sun signs on it. To be 100% fair, I haven’t seen the latest demos from the competition, so bear that in mind when I say that I’ve been just blown away. Specifically, our storage guys are claiming that, compared to the competition, these things are:

  • Lots cheaper,

  • Way easier to install and manage,

  • Immensely more observable, and

  • Much less power-hungry.

I’m not an expert on pricing or electricity, but on the medium two points above, I can testify that the setup and monitoring screens are scary-smooth and apparently idiot-proof. Obviously, there is some predictable ZFS and DTrace magic behind the scenes, but there’s also an immense amount of (here’s a surprise) JavaScript. Because as we too often forget, the user interface is the application.

Some of the coverage goes on and on about the fact that there’s lots of SSD in the picture along with the spinning rust. And our marketing spiel has a lot of talk about scalability and reliability, which I’m sure are perfectly competitive. But I think the big deal is about manageability and price.

The storage guys who built this stuff seem level-headed and not prone to inflated claims. So this smells like a really nice announcement as we and the industry work through the tough times.


Comment feed for ongoing:Comments feed

From: Scott Johnson (Nov 10 2008, at 09:24)

I'm not familiar with the competition's products either, but the user interface on this stuff is really slick!


From: Matt (Nov 12 2008, at 16:14)

I wish they would have made AFP over TCP supported on it. (I know Mac's can do both NFS and SMB just fine, but AFP is nicer)


From: robert (Nov 13 2008, at 07:42)

Now the really smart pocket protector folk will take this and build 5NF RDBMS systems that need only CRUD operations, and replace all those flat file (xml and otherwise) monstrosities.

While you *could* just put an olde flat file system on the machine, the application code overhang will be blown away by the SQL set operation paradigm of the solid state disk datbase machine.

Prepare to be disrupted.

Too bad Sun bought into MySQL, which is fundamentally just a SQL parser in front of flat files. OTOH, IBM and Oracle (although I expect IBM will have equivalent hardware *real soon*, no inside knowledge, just logic) must be salivating.


From: Bill de hÓra (Nov 13 2008, at 11:37)

When will the 7410 support AtomPub?


author · Dad
colophon · rights
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November 09, 2008
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