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Pure Storage Gives FlashArray New Security, Access And Mobility Capabilities

With its new Purity 6.0 storage software, Pure Storage is 'expanding the capabilities of FlashArray to new file-based workloads and longer distances,' says Prakash Darji, general manager of the FlashArray line.

All-flash storage array developer Pure Storage Wednesday updated the storage software for its FlashArray series of storage systems to give it unified block and file capabilities along with the ability to do continuous replication of data for active disaster recovery.

With its new Purity 6.0 storage software for its FlashArray family, Pure Storage is giving the product line new security, access and mobility capabilities, said Prakash Darji, general manager of the FlashArray line for the Mountain View, Calif.-based vendor.

"Pure is expanding the capabilities of FlashArray to new file-based workloads and longer distances," Darji told CRN.

[Related: Pure Storage CEO Charles Giancarlo On Investing Heavily To Tie On-Prem To Cloud]

The new capabilities were unveiled as part of Pure Storage's virtual Accelerate conference held Wednesday.

The introduction of the new Purity 6.0 FlashArray software comes just one month after Pure Storage introduced its Purity 3.0 FlashBlade software, which brought to its FlashBlade line file and object replication capabilities for the first time.

Pure Storage's FlashBlade storage line was designed primarily for file-based and object-based storage capabilities, while its FlashArray storage line was targeted at block-based data.

However, Pure Storage's April 2019 acquisition of Compuverde gave the company a proven enterprise file protocol stack that became the key to adding file data capabilities to Purity 6.0, Darji said.

"We've used Compuverde to embed file capabilities on our FlashArray," he said. "So now we can consolidate block, NFS [network file system] and CIFS [common internet file system] data on the FlashArray."

Adding file capability to the FlashArray is important for clients, said Jeffrey Fonke, global technical solutions architect for storage at World Wide Technology, a St. Louis-based solution provider that has been beta- testing the new technology for over three months.

"This gets Pure Storage into the midmarket in a multiprotocol way," Fonke told CRN. "This is a long-term hole Pure Storage needed to fill to complete its portfolio. To have a product covering that niche is important in getting a seat at the table."

Darji said Pure Storage's FlashArray line was focused on scale-up operations for low-latency applications, while FlashBlade scaled out for high-bandwidth applications.

With Compuverde, Pure Storage is adding global unified block and file protocol, data snapshots, data reductions and other services to FlashArray while taking advantage of the FlashBlade APIs and management, he said.

Also new to Purity 6.0 for FlashArray is ActiveDR, which is the ability to do continuous replication over long distances, Darji said.

With ActiveDR, Purity 6.0 now protects virtualized workloads using VMware Site Recovery Manager, as well as business-critical applications like Microsoft SQL, Oracle, SAP and MongoDB, he said.

James Gallegos, Pure Storage's FlashArray product marketing manager, told CRN that the company has done short-distance snapshots and replications for five years, and a couple of years ago introduced ActiveCluster, which did synchronous replication to read from and write to two separate arrays at the same time.

The new ActiveDR offers near-synchronous replication with a recovery point objective of near zero seconds, but allows the ability to stretch the replications between arrays as far as needed, with the ability to replicate the write between the sites, Gallegos said.

"This allows the ability to preconnect hosts for faster failover and easier testing of the replications," he said.

Pure Storage also unveiled a tech preview for CloudSnap for Google Cloud Platform, Darji said. CloudSnap allows data to be backed up natively to public clouds. This follows the introduction last fall of Cloud Block Store for AWS, which allows the FlashArray Purity storage operating system to run in the cloud to provide common storage management across on-premises and cloud environments, he said. The company earlier this year also unveiled a beta version of Cloud Block Store for Microsoft Azure, he said.

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