AccelStor: Unleashing True Storage Performance

Dr. Charles Tsai, President With more than a decade of experience in demonstrating fluency in software technologies and product development, Dr. Charles Tsai, President, AccelStor succinctly describes his company as the substantial combination of cohesive, competitive, and talented people. Giving credence to his dynamic and agile team at AccelStor, the IT veteran believes in the idea, ‘brilliant minds tend to contribute diversified ideas’.

Headquartered in Taipei City, Taiwan, the company’s highly skilled team’s prowess in software-defined technology is facilitating them to bring breakthroughs in an important area of the High Performance Computing (HPC) vertical—flash storage. “In HPC space, many organizations are unaware of the proper way of using flash storage to accelerate the computation,” says Tsai. In the midst of situation when flash memory is gradually replacing the traditional spindle-type storage in HPC domain, many organizations are still depending on the archaic ways of using the capacity tier of the data centers. Though the awareness about the significance of capacity tier and performance tier of the storage part is steadily being created, many enterprises still struggle to resolve the challenges around storage I/O bottlenecks.

AccleStor brings a paradigm shift to this scenario by helping organizations take advantage of software-defined storage or software-defined flash. The company's game-changing product, NeoSapphire all-flash arrays powered by FlexiRemap software technology is dedicated to the mission of accelerating world's information access with innovations in software technology and solid-state storage.

New Prospect of High Performance Computing

In today’s fast-paced industry, most data-intensive applications, such as high performance big data analytics or machine simulations, benefit from different types of storage systems. “Compared to conventional disk arrays, all-flash arrays generally provide hundred times more performance,” affirms Tsai. In addition, many organizations demand robust multi-core processors, high speed network connectivity, and tremendous storage capacity to achieve shorter time to results. AccelStor’s optimized storage solution for high performance computing, NeoSapphire enables organizations to save significant time and resources, while assuring high speed performance. “Many business applications today are no longer constrained by the ever-increasing computation power but rather limited by the less-noticed, yet critical, storage performance,” says Tsai. “With the market-leading performance of NeoSapphire all-flash arrays at sustained 600K IOPS for 4KB random writes, we are addressing the toughest storage requirement for fast I/O in enterprise and HPC segments,” adds Tsai.

AccelStor adopts standard protocols to help organizations easily integrate NeoSapphire with their existing infrastructure in high performance computing segment—that works in tandem with SSDs and other types of usage models. “Making balance between SSDs and networking is the key to deliver high throughput using software-defined flash and storage device,” says Tsai.

With the market-leading performance of NeoSapphire all-flash arrays at sustained 600K IOPS for 4KB random writes, we are addressing the toughest storage requirement for fast I/O in enterprise and HPC segments

However, if there is a bottleneck inside the system, it hinders the highest possible performance. “We perfectly blend the ingredients to make the balance in I/O subsystems as well as networking, to eliminate the bottlenecks and serve high speed storage to our customers,” adds Tsai.

AccelStor NeoSapphire all-flash arrays are capable of delivering 600,000 IOPS (Input/Output per Seconds) for 4KB random writes in a sustained fashion, with standard iSCSI protocol over mainstream, cost-effective 10GbE connectivity. “This is especially beneficial to the applications that process large amounts of transient data at a very high data rate in the storage system to eliminate performance bottleneck,” assures Tsai.

The I/O-intensive simulation programs in the HPC segment will benefit from adopting NeoSapphire all-flash arrays to a great extent with much less amount of time required for generating simulation results. In an instance, a local research institute involved in chemical process simulation had to speed up the process of chemical simulations to roll out feasible possibilities before running physical experimentation in laboratories. The institute, however, wanted a powerful computation solution to simulate the chemical reactions to have clearer insights, without wasting time. They connected AccelStor NeoSapphire all-flash arrays to their computing node in high speed network interfaces and drastically shortened the time for getting results.

AccelStor also maximizes the internal units to allow data flows to be evenly distributed across all the SSDs of the system. Additionally, multiple of the software all-flash arrays can work together to easily support large scale computation environment.

‘Remapping’ the Crucial Data

In HPC domain, effectively handling data-access traffic caused by humungous volumes of data is proving to be a major challenge for the enterprise-level IT departments. Today’s enterprises require high performance systems to handle such environments. AccelStor’s solutions are backed by a unique technology, FlexiRemap that untangles the intricacies around this storage process.

“FlexiRemap technology is flash-oriented software that features an architectural re-design tailored for the fundamentals and internal workings of flash memory,” says Tsai. “Unlike RAID algorithms, FlexiRemap remaps the data whenever beneficial, before passing it to the underlying flash memory, avoiding unnecessary overhead, and extending the lifespan of SSDs.”
Such remapping is especially crucial for random-write access patterns, which mostly comprise enterprise-data traffic and are a major cause of hindrances in storage-access performance. FlexiRemap accelerates random writes by adopting an impactful method to speed up data processing, while rearranging all new data to sequential block addresses before passing it to SSDs, which then receive and process the sequential data. In a nutshell, the unique technology enables SSDs to directly write the sequential data into consecutive pages, thereby reducing the workload.

"Business applications today are often limited by the less-noticed, yet critical, storage performance. NeoSapphire all-flash arrays address this for enterprise and HPC segments"

“FlexiRemap is designed to take into considerations the nature of flash memory and modern processor architecture,” says Tsai. With built-in data protection, FlexiRemap provides the most desirable benefits of RAID algorithms, without the drawbacks. “The resulted high-performing and long-enduring NeoSapphire all-flash arrays come from a perfect blend of modern technology with our own recipe—FlexiRemap,” adds Tsai.

Staying Agile and Positive

Tsai firmly believes that the key is to stay “agile and positive” during the tough testing times. “We do challenge one another's ideas when they first emerge, and when we come to the consensus through fast-spinning, constructive debate, we adjust ourselves so that the team merge and the action plans are executed efficiently and effectively.” If the decisions taken by the team fall short in fulfilling the objectives, AccelStor, once again, goes through spinning cycles till they find a better solution. “We learn from the past, fix errors fast, and move forward,” adds Tsai.

The company emphasizes on delivering cost-effective solutions that add value to the entire system to thwart competition. “That's why we can stay very competitive in terms of the performance metrics as well as the pricing round,” affirms Tsai. “We've realized that, what we need is just to faithfully present the true features and advantages of our technology and products, and they will speak for themselves— even if we are less abundant than the competitors in terms of brand awareness.”

Going forward, AccelStor is keen on using two important pillars—software technology and flash storage—to achieve its goal of accelerating information access. “NeoSapphire all-flash arrays is just our first step; there are other additions or types of the storage-oriented performance acceleration solutions coming on the way,” concludes Tsai on a promising note.


Dr. Charles Tsai, President

Provider of software-defined all-flash arrays that resolve the storage I/O bottleneck for high performance computing applications