DataCenterNews Asia logo
Specialist data center news for Asia
Partner content
Story image

What happens when you run Linux on a toaster?

By Contributor
Mon 25 May 2020
FYI, this story is more than a year old

In today’s data center, software-defined-everything is the new normal, and for plenty of good reasons: agility, flexibility, longevity. Amongst all the hype however, the precious role of hardware in the ecosystem seems to have been forgotten, cast aside in the insatiable quest for better results. But what has that actually done for those hard-fought-for results? Are you cashing in on false efficiencies by using cheap, off-the-shelf, generic appliances? We’d like to argue that yes, you have.

Hardware has been so commoditised in the data center to the point of obscurity, and in so doing, we’ve shot ourselves in the foot because it’s been to the detriment of the results we’re seeking.

Think about it - just because you can build a toaster that runs Linux, it doesn’t mean you should. 

The net effect in the data center has been the implicit assumption that if your solution is “software-defined” then the hardware doesn’t matter. In our view, nothing could be further from the truth. 

It’s not unusual to see half-empty racks in data centers these days. Why? Because today’s generic appliances are assembled using off the shelf components that are not optimized for the task at hand. We’ve been going about it backwards: shoe-horning our software in an attempt to force better results. The irony is that in reality, the net result is large, inefficient, power-hungry boxes that suck power and cooling resources. As data continues to grow and the trend to hybrid cloud sees ever more data repatriated from the public cloud, this is a situation that - left unchanged - is unsustainable.

If you're selling generic hardware into open source data center deployments you're missing a trick. You’re missing the chance to differentiate by delivering superior performance and efficiency, as well a solution that's easier (and therefore more profitable) to deploy and support, yet still delivers all the independence of open source. Everyone is a winner…

The way we see it is when you use task-specific hardware, optimized to run the very best software-defined, open source solutions like Ceph for storage, you’re setting yourself up for significant and meaningful performance gains. And, especially when it comes to storage; density improvements that enable you to fully utilise available space without blowing power and cooling budgets.

For example, SoftIron’s HyperDrive Density Storage appliance enables you to deliver 120TB of storage in a single “u” of rack space with a power budget of fewer than 125 watts – that’s over 5PB of storage in a 42U rack, delivered for around 5KW of power consumption – well within that delivered in most data center racks – and a potential significant cost saving in co-location environments where consumption impacts rack rates.

Of course, it’s not just about power, it’s also about performance. When you truly understand the task and the way the software is architected to deal with it, you can exploit the potential with hardware that is purpose-built to support that. We dive deeper into that here, but in an essence, that’s why we’re able to deliver such blistering performance using open source code.

Over and above these immediate gains, when you design and build hardware for a specific task, and you know exactly what code you’re going to run, you can vastly improve the ability to efficiently and intuitively configure, install and operate your environment. The end result? All the benefits of a proprietary bundled solution, but without the huge drawback of the vendor lock-in because don’t forget, it’s still open source, so you can move on at any time.

And when it comes to our channel partners, we believe this is a particularly unique proposition, providing a very tangible and profitable point of difference to the stack and paving the way for value-added services like OSS support. 

So yes, you can certainly continue to run Ceph, SONiC, or any other software-defined platforms on generic hardware. Try to run it on a toaster if you like. Our bet though is that, once you’ve experienced the difference that purpose-built, task-specific design makes, you won’t want to.

If you’re curious to see how task-specific hardware can make an impact in your data center, visit www.softiron.com or book a demo here.

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Vectra AI named as AWS security competency partner
Threat detection and response company Vectra AI has announced that it has become an Amazon Web Services Security Competency Partner.
Story image
Development
Intel Labs unveils integrated photonics research advancement
"This new research demonstrates that its possible to achieve well-matched output power with uniform and densely spaced wavelengths."
Story image
Macquarie Data Centres
Macquarie deal to pioneer CO2-cutting data centre tech in Australia
Macquarie Data Centres has signed a multi-year deal with ResetData, an Australian first provider using Submer data centre technology. 
Story image
Migration
SNP unveils next generation of CrystalBridge software platform
Data is a key pillar of every customer-centric organisation, as it relies on agile decisions to become increasingly sustainable and intelligent.
Story image
Sustainability
Legrand unveils Nexpand, a data center cabinet platform
Legrand has unveiled a new data center cabinet platform, Nexpand, to offer the necessary scalability and future-proof architecture for digital transformation.
Story image
Infrastructure
SolarWinds IT Trends Report highlights increased cloud complexity for businesses
SolarWinds' new IT Trends report has signalled a significant shift in the way businesses are dealing with hybrid cloud and infrastructure.
Story image
Colocation
Digital Edge chooses Nortek’s StatePoint for new data center
Digital Edge will use Nortek's StatePoint liquid cooling technology in its new data center, the first commercial colocation operator in Asia to do so.
Story image
Secure access service edge / SASE
Cisco unveils new cloud-managed networking offerings
Cisco has announced new cloud management capabilities that offer a unified experience across the Cisco Meraki, Cisco Catalyst and Cisco Nexus portfolios.
Story image
Sydney
Equinix and PGIM Real Estate open data centre in Sydney
Equinix and PGIM Real Estate, the real estate investment and financing arm of PGIM, have announced the first xScale data centre in Sydney, named SY9x.
Story image
Sustainability
SoftIron named global leader for efficient DC infrastructure solutions
SoftIron has been named a global leader for supplying energy-efficient data infrastructure solutions for core-to-edge data centers after an assessment by Earth Capital Ltd.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Secureworks researches new threat to Elasticsearch databases
Researchers from Secureworks' Counter Threat Unit have identified indexes of multiple internet-facing Elasticsearch databases replaced with a ransom note.
Story image
Data Science
Neo4j announces service delivery alliance with Deloitte
Neo4j has announced a service delivery alliance with Deloitte Consulting Southeast Asia for a range of services to customers within the region.
Story image
Infrastructure
Global investment in data centers more than doubled in 2021
DLA Piper's latest global survey finds the total investment in data center infrastructure worldwide rose from USD $24.4 billion in 2020 to USD $53.8 billion in 2021.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Zscaler launches co-located data centres in Canberra and Auckland
The investment will offer public and private sector enterprises greater resilience in support of their zero trust cybersecurity posture.
Story image
Infosys
Preparing for the digital decade with the right workforce strategies
For a decade that started under the pall of the pandemic, the 2020s is poised to end with a bang with the digital economy swelling to a high across the world.
Story image
Cloud
Boomi surpasses 20,000 customers. Sets record for the iPaaS space
Boomi has announced it has surpassed the 20,000 customer mark, setting the record for the largest customer base among iPaaS vendors.
Story image
Cloud
QuSecure partners with DataBridge Sites to showcase platform
QuSecure has partnered with DataBridge Sites to showcase its Quantum-as-a-Service (QaaS) orchestration platform, QuProtect.
Story image
Sustainability
Daikin and SP Group to build new energy efficient district cooling system
The project, set to be complete by 2025, will create a system with a cooling capacity of up to 36,000 refrigerant tonnes (RT). 
Story image
Microsoft
Microsoft, Cloudian partnership offers data center flexibility
Cloudian’s HyperStore object storage platform is now integrated and validated to work with Microsoft SQ Server 2022, offering more flexible and scalable data centers.
Story image
Sustainability
Huawei unveils next-generation sustainable data centers
Huawei says its next-generation data centers will be powered by PowerPOD 3.0, which reduces the footprint by 40% and cuts the energy consumption by 70%.
Story image
Sisense
Data and analytics could be key to higher selling prices in APAC
Sisense's latest report has found that almost half of data professionals in APAC think customised data and analytics can create better selling prices for their products.
Story image
Healthcare
SnapLogic launches Accelerator for Amazon HealthLake
SnapLogic has launched Accelerator to allow healthcare and life sciences organisations to turn raw data into healthcare-related insights and actions.
Story image
Cloud
Vertiv introduces line of redundant power transfer switches
Vertiv has introduced Vertiv Geist Rack Transfer Switch (RTS), a new line of transfer switches that provides redundant power to single-corded devices.
Story image
Robotic Process Automation / RPA
Micro Focus unveils Data Center Automation for SaaS delivery
MicroFocus has released Data Center Automation (DCA) for software-as-a-service (SaaS) delivery, offering more cost-effective vulnerability risk and IT compliance management.
Story image
Sustainability
Evolution Data Centres reveals target of 20 tonnes of CO2 per GWh
Evolution Data Centres launches their new Sustainable Data Centre Charter, which includes targets like only 20 tonnes of carbon emissions per GWh by 2030.
Story image
Broadband
Singapore found to have the speediest internet rates in the world
New research from BanklessTimes has shown that Singapore has the highest recorded median internet speed in the world at 207.61 MBPS.
Story image
Vietnam
Viettel IDC deploys Cloudian Hyperstore object storage for enhanced cloud solutions
Cloudian has announced that its Hyperstore object storage has been deployed by Vietnam telco Viettel IDC, citing the technology’s flexibility, multi-tenancy and ransomware protection as significant advantages.
Story image
Sustainability
Aligned Data Centers increases sustainability-linked loan
Aligned Data Centers has increased its sustainability-linked loan from $375 million to $1.75 billion to speed up the next phase of its strategic growth.
Story image
Expansion
Colt Technology expands into South Korea data center market
Colt Technology Services has expanded its network into the South Korean market, offering the country’s businesses cost-effective, low latency connectivity.
Story image
Infrastructure
New Uptime analysis highlights worsening downtime costs and consequences
New data from Uptime Institute has found that downtime costs and consequences are worsening as those involved in data infrastructure fail to find ways to curb outages.
Story image
Amazon Web Services / AWS
Qualtrics goes live on AWS Cloud Infrastructure in Japan
Organisations across Japan will now be able to access the Qualtrics XM/OS platform locally via data centre in the AWS Asia Pacific (Tokyo) region.
Story image
CASB
Juniper expands SASE offering with data loss prevention capabilities
Juniper has announced the expansion of its SASE offering with the addition of cloud access security broker (CASB) and data loss prevention (DLP) capabilities.
Story image
Public Cloud
Public cloud services revenues top $400 billion in 2021
"For the next several years, leading cloud providers will play a critical role in helping enterprises navigate the current storms of disruption."
Story image
Cloud
Cisco Live showcases new offerings in its first hybrid event
Cisco Live 2022 has seen Cisco executives and customers take the stage to present a range of discussions in the company’s first-ever hybrid event.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Kaspersky opens three new centers to boost data management
Cybersecurity company Kaspersky has opened three new Transparency Centers, one in Japan, the second in Singapore and the third in the United States.
Story image
Employment
Tech job moves - Forcepoint, Malwarebytes, SolarWinds & VMware
We round up all job appointments from May 13-20, 2022, in one place to keep you updated with the latest from across the tech industries.
Story image
Hybrid Cloud
HPE GreenLake advances hybrid cloud experience with new services
"The innovations unveiled today further build on our vision to provide the market with an unmatched platform to spur innovation and drive transformation.”
Story image
Sustainability
Intel unveils new investments for data center sustainability
Intel has announced two new investments, continuing its efforts to create more sustainable data center technology.
Story image
Partnerships
Thailand announces launch of the Thailand 5G Alliance
It will promote collaboration between the public and private sector, through companies such as Huawei, to commercially drive Thailand's 5G development.
Story image
Infrastructure
Oracle Cloud Infrastructure expands distributed cloud services
“Distributed cloud is the next evolution of cloud computing, and provides customers with more flexibility and control in how they deploy cloud resources."
Story image
Cloud
SnapLogic improves Intelligent Integration Platform
SnapLogic has released new features and improvements to its Intelligent Integration Platform, which will allow IT, data and business teams to make select processes faster and more straightforward.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Databricks announces new offering for Unity Catalog
Databricks has significantly expanded data governance capabilities on the lakehouse by unveiling data lineage for Unity Catalog.
Story image
Cloud
Cloudflare outage in 19 data centers worldwide due to own error
Cloudflare says its outage for 19 of its data centers yesterday was because of a change in a long-running project to increase resilience in its busiest locations.
Story image
Digital Transformation
The Huawei APAC conference kicks off with digital transformation
More than 1500 people from across APAC have gathered for the Huawei APAC Digital Innovation Congress to explore the future of digital innovation.