Violin and Fujitsu Team for Flash-based Microsoft SQL Data Warehouse

By Pedro Hernandez

Brimming with DRAM and lofty price tags, in-memory systems make quick work out of Big Data workloads, but Violin Memory and Fujitsu Technology Solutions are banking on flash to help Microsoft shops accelerate their SQL environments.

The companies today announced three certified Microsoft SQL data warehouse products that sport 20 TB and 60 TB of flash storage capacity from Mountain View, Calif.-based Violin. Topping the range is the massive 240 TB, 24U system. The compute and additional storage infrastructure are provided by Fujitsu's Primergy server and Eternus storage hardware, respectively.

Violin Memory is a provider of all-flash storage systems. The company recently made waves by launching Velocity, the company's first server-side PCIe flash acceleration server cards. In January, the company plunged into the burgeoning software-defined storage market by acquiring GridIron for its application acceleration technology.

Violin also took first place in Gartner's rankings of all-flash array vendors for 2012. In terms of sales, the company claimed 19.4 percent of the market, besting industry giants like EMC and IBM.

The goal is to help speed cloud environments and transaction-heavy business apps by bridging the performance gap between hard disk drive (HDD) infrastructures and blazingly fast, yet pricey, in-memory setups. "The certified solutions provide customers with performance previously achieved only from in-memory server solutions," boasted the companies in a joint statement.

Violin Memory and Fujitsu add that the new all-flash systems help data center operators achieve new efficiencies in energy use, operating costs, and –  perhaps just as crucially in this age of ballooning IT infrastructures – data center footprint. Most notably, general performance gets a massive upgrade.

The certified solution allows Microsoft SQL shops to "run more parallel and complex queries at faster speeds." Hours-long data imports now take minutes and query times that once took minutes are whittled down to seconds, claim the IT systems makers.

Fujitsu's and Violin's data warehouse product helps businesses hoist clouds built on Microsoft's database ecosystem, according to Mark Jewett, director of Server and Tools Marketing, Microsoft.

"SQL Server 2012 is a cloud-ready information platform that helps organizations unlock breakthrough insights. By adhering to the Fast Track architecture, the Violin and Fujitsu data warehouse offering gives customers a verified approach for building large data warehouses on SQL Server that scale to meet even the most demanding business needs," said Mark Jewett in company remarks.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InfoStor and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

This article was originally published on July 16, 2013