If you want to check out an incredible technology facility, visit the nearest Microsoft Technology Center (MTC). I went to the Mountain View, CA MTC today with my co-worker Burzin Patel and we were given a tour by MTC architects Kui Jia and Luis Salazar. We spoke about the types of customer engagements they have and I was blown away by the depth of technology and sevrices at their disposal. From informational briefings to solutions designs to proof of concepts to benchmarking, the teams at the MTCs are prepared to help customers understand exactly how to make their technology work. By the way, this includes working with Microsoft's Azure cloud - including storage integrated with StorSimple Cloud Integrated Enterprise Storage.
Part of these advanced engagements involve working in Microsoft's state of the art technology labs that are full of products from Microsoft partners such as HP, Dell, Cisco, EMC, Netapp, F5, Brocade, StorSimple and others. You have to see it to believe it, so here are a couple photos.
First, a StorSimple Cloud-Integrated Enterprise Storage System (at the bottom of the rack)
Here is a shot that shows a lot more of the equipment in their state of the art technology lab:
We all like a little recognition from time to time and we are excited to receive the 2011 Product of the Year in the Storage Systems Category from Storage Magazine.
Here is what the judges had to say about our products:
An award like this is an important marker, demonstrating our recent success in 2011. The thing that is ultimately gratifying, however, is the engagement we have with our growing customer base, who are trusting StorSimple to do things that they never even imagined a few months ago. We look forward to making cloud storage as useful and transparent as possible throughout 2012.
It's a bird, it's a plane, no.... it's cloud storage!
This week marks the beginning of my journey into cloud storage - and I expect this journey to be incredibly interesting, with many things to learn about cloud services and unlearn about legacy storage. In one respect, the leap to the cloud is not very far because the company I joined, StorSimple, makes storage solutions that integrate enterprise storage with cloud storage services. The enterprise storage side of these systems is something I understand fairly well, but legacy storage applications in the cloud can have fascinating surprises and power - as well as limitations. The trick, as always is to ameliorate the weaknesses and enhance the strengths.
For instance, one of the obvious issues with cloud storage is that it's base-level functions are not nearly as reliable or fast as enterprise storage arrays. The StorSimple design addresses these weaknesses with rich metadata that guarantees data integrity and data reduction technologies (dedupe and compression) that reduce the amount of data that needs to be transferred and stored by the storage service. This blog will explore these technologies in depth as I get up to speed on them. I am going to have a lot of fun figuring out how to explain how it all works in whiteboard animations, graphics and words.
Rest assured, as it is with any form of enterprise storage, there is a lot of heavy lifting to do - and all the various corner cases that need flattening. The engineering team here is made up of very experienced enterprise storage people who bring the intensity that hard core storage development demands.
I am overjoyed to be here with them.