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Bringing Server-based Storage to the SAN - Making Storage Acceleration Mainstream
Just a few short months ago, a number of vendors in the market started introducing flash-based, in-the-server, storage acceleration technologies that we label Server-based Storage Accelerators (which I also refer to as “accelerators” in this article). Across the board, such devices were primarily PCIe form factor cards with on-board flash memory that plugged into a server motherboard slot. Through driver or other software inserted into the server OS’s software stack, the solution would intercept I/Os, cache data from SAN-attached disk onto a NAND-flash cache, and then redirect future I/O requests to that cache. QLogic takes an approach that may make these accelerators the most disruptive performance technology yet. Why? Because this introduction is likely to make server-based storage accelerators more widely deployable than ever before, bringing the benefits of flash optimized I/O into the SAN. First let’s take a look at why these accelerators are a key performance technology to begin with.