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Kalray Flashbox Storage Arrays Co-Developed With Viking Enterprise Solutions

NVMe, NVME-oF and DPU processors delivering 2 million IO/s, 12GB/s per card, latency of 30μs

Kalray Corp. announced its Storage Digital Event on BrightTALK on September 28, 2021 at 4pm CET, the event is accessible here.

Storage arrays are fundamental building blocks in present-day data centers. However, the adoption of NVMe SSDs, a new type of fast, low latency storage media, challenges the way storage infrastructure and appliances are built today.

Join key storage industry players, and learn more about industry trends and how new technologies such as NVMe, NVMe-oF as well as DPUs, a new type of processor dedicated to data processing, are driving the next storage revolution.

“The new storage revolution has started. We are delighted to organize such an event with some of the most talented storage experts in the world. Delivering high performance and a complete range of enterprise data storage services on top of NVMe technology requires a new generation of processors, DPUs, and a new generation of storage appliances. Kalray is one of the leading providers of DPUs with Kalray MPPA processor family and during the event will present the Kalray FlashBox, one of the first DPU-based NVMe storage appliance available on the market” said Eric Baissus, president and CEO. “During this illustrious event, we would like to take the opportunity to unveil our new brand identity to align with the vision, values and ambition of Kalray moving forward.”

NVMe SSDs are up to 100x faster than traditional SSDs, but more difficult to deploy at scale. Most NVMe SSDs are deployed as direct-attached or local storage, which does not scale and is highly inefficient.

FlashBox, whose co-development with Viking Enterprise Solutions, a division of Sanmina Corporation, has been announced last July, is the first disaggregated NVMe storage array that has been designed to leverage the potential of NVMe flash at scale, while ensuring the lowest storage TCO. IT features the Kalray K200-LP Storage Acceleration Card with Kalray’s flagship data-centric processor, the MPPA DPU. It enables customers to unlock the performance of NVMe SSDs at scale, while meeting reliability and efficiency requirements for their businesses.

Customers, willing to build their own AFA from an on-the-shelf chassis, can start from Kalray’s K200-LP acceleration card, a low-profile, 2x100GbE, PCIe Gen4 card that can deliver more than 2 million IO/s and 12GB/s per card (both RoCE and TCP) with a latency of 30μs.

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It's an interesting period as Kalray launched this product and we hear other competitors will also initiate some new stuff soon. It confirms once again that disaggregated storage is a hot topic and a serious development area for several players in various domain of the stack.

Kalray is a processor developer targeting edge and high demanding applications, leveraging its 3rd MPPA (Massively Parallel Processor Array) generation. The French company, traded on Euronext under the ticket ALKAL, has approximately invested €100 million in R&D and unveiled its full flash NVMe-oF storage array named Flashbox. Beyond that storage penetration and clear strategy, we're surprised to not see any storage expert at the executive or board level.

The product is not unique on the market but clearly delivers some compelling characteristics and I/O behaviors. Its reminds by some of its attributes of Fungible FS1600, Pavilion Data, Vexata now StorCentric array, or the Lightbits approach or Pliops, all promoting high performance end to end NVMe with rich data services. Of course not all of them leverage their DPU like Kalray or Fungible. Fungible, due to the root of its founder, Pradeep Sindhu, founder of Juniper Networks, is a TCP ambassador, Kalray supporting RoCE and TCP.

The go to market strategy will be key for the adoption and we know that hyperscalers already adopted such model.

OEM is playing also a key role in the sale execution but it takes time.

Again it's a new confirmation that innovation comes from small agile dedicated companies. The battle is on, so watch this space in the next few months.