Experts View

The Next-Gen Data Center is Data @ the Center

Khalid Wani
By: Mr. Khalid Wani, Director- Sales, India, Western Digital

For decades, businesses have equipped data centers with silo upon silo of servers, applications, networking, and storage in their insatiable quest to deliver business insight to LOB leaders, their management, and the C-suite.

A data center is the backbone of enterprise data storage solutions. With the increasing amount of data, evolving data workloads, and valuable insights from this data, we are witnessing the modernization of data centers. The Indian data center market is observing robust growth in the era of virtualization and cloud computing. The data center market is expected to log a 25-30% CAGR to reach $4.5-$5 billion by fiscal 2025[i]. The trend is due to massive growth on the back of the pandemic led by digital transformation among enterprises and the government’s data localization rules. Data storage managers have realized that data centers need technology upgrades that replace an aging data center infrastructure with innovative technologies. Some of the modern trends which we observed in 2020 and are expected to shape up in 2021.

Change in Design Infrastructure
The next generation of data centers has the priority to improve designs. Vibration is a challenge for spinning media. What this means for the data center is latency and slower performance of applications as the head has to resettle and wait for the correct sector to come around again. Innovations in Western Digital’s range of JBODs and storage servers reduces vibration of individual drives by up to 62% compared to traditional enclosures. Another challenge data centers are struggling with is the associated costs of cooling. A patented new design called ArcticFlow, improves cooling and reliability, reduces energy consumption and delivers real cost savings.

New technology upgrades for the new workload
A game-changer for data centers and applications, especially for emerging technology workloads, Internet of Things (IoT), and real-time analytics, NVMe is designed to maximize flash storage benefits over SATA & SAS, delivers high performance and low latency. Western Digital’s Ultrastar® DC SN840 data center SSD will lay the foundation for next-generation purpose-built infrastructure. They are the future-ready solution that lets you power new, data-intensive applications. The drive is ideal for extreme performance in mixed workload applications and reduces cost.

Software-Defined Storage
Software-Defined Storage is the physical and logical separation of the hardware and software. The storage goes into a shared pool, from which the SDS controller flexibly carves out storage for applications and services. Organizations can respond to digital demands more quickly and simply with SDS technology, which increases the pace of infrastructure scalability. SDS allows reduction of operational expenditures. It allows customizing the storage infrastructure to specific requirements, such as prioritizing storage performance and density.

New Generation SSDs
Zoned Storage is a framework for intelligently placing data on a device, and is an open-source, standards-based initiative to enable data centers to scale efficiently for the zettabyte storage capacity era. The zoned storage implementation for SSDs is called ZNS (Zoned Namedspaces). ZNS SSDs are new generation SSDs pivotal in the evolution of data-centric architectures as we enter the zettabyte age. ZNS helps to solve storage problems for cloud, analytics, AI, and machine learning. The Ultrastar® DC ZN540 ZNS NVMe SSD is augmenting next-generation storage and system architectures’ evolution by delivering higher throughput, better service quality, and lowering the total system cost of ownership at-scale.

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