Pure Storage ramps up enterprise creds with ransomware and DR support

Pure Storage has added disaster recovery and ransomware protection via Purity OS upgrades for the company’s FlashArray systems. Pure has also launched the C40, a new entry-level FlashArray. And it has added SMB support for the FlashBlade line.

Let’s start with Purity 6.1 for FlashArray. New features include SafeMode ransomware protection and immutable snapshots for the block and file access FlashArray line, which comprises //X high-performance tier 1 systems and //C tier 2 arrays.

SafeMode makes the retention periods for snapshots of volumes, Pods, Protection Groups and files are tunable from 24 hours to 30 days. Within that period a snapshot cannot be deleted and its contents are available in seconds to recover data attacked by ransomware.

Ajay Singh

Ajay Singh, Pure’s Chief Product Officer, provided an announcement statement: “We are chipping away at the complexity baked into legacy storage that is simply not designed for the digital age. … [We are] providing a dynamic, cloud-based storage experience that is flexible, on-demand, and delivered as code.” 

The Cloud Block Store product (Purity running in AWS) and FlashBlade systems also receive the Safe Mode and immutable snapshot upgrade.

Purity 6.1 for FlashArray

Purity//FA 6.1 adds grouping of FlashArrays using ActiveCluster over Fibre Channel to provide stretched clustering between data centres. This disaster recovery feature is integrated with the Pure1 Cloud Mediator, which removes the need for a third-site witness. It also enables a third recovery site to be added anywhere in the world. 

Alex McMullan.

Purity//FA 6.1 introduces host access with NVMe-over-Fabrics using 32Gbit/s Fibre Channel, in addition to the existing NVMe-oF across Ethernet. This can reduce data access latency by up to 50 per cent.

Pure’s International  CTO Alex McMullan told Blocks & Files in a briefing that Pure will add gen 7 Fibre Channel -meaning 64Gbit/s speed – when there is customer demand. 

The new, lower-cost entry-level FlashArray//C40 incorporates Purity//FA 6.1. The array has a QLC flash capacity range of 247TB to 494TB, positioning it as a more affordable system than the existing //C60, with its 366TB to 1.8PB capacity range. McMullan mentioned a $0.50/GB cost before data reduction. 

Pure product positioning diagram.

Pure said it has has improved FlashArray//C data reduction efficiency .

FlashBlade functionality improvements

FlashBlade also gets a software upgrade.The file and object all-flash storage combo receives Purity//FB 3.2, added SMB support to the existing NFS. It scales out to all blades in a cluster and accelerates disk array-based Windows applications.

Pure has validated FlashBlade SMB configurations with various healthcare Picture Archiving and Communications Systems. These PACS applications run faster on FlashBlade than on unidentified competing systems. Pure claims SQL Server Backup can run at speeds higher than 1TB/min and 43.78TB/hour on FlashBlade for SQL farms that need fast backup and recovery. That means just over 1PB in 24 hours. 

There is access control list interoperability between NFS and SMB users for consistency. Pure has also added:

  • Cross-protocol file access, 
  • S3 user policies for create/delete/read/write control at the user level, 
  • Monitoring of real-time user activity to prevent runaway jobs, 
  • Sparse files support; files with zeros removed to save space. 

Sparse file support reduces licensing cost for third-party data moving applications. It also means VMware virtual disks can be thin-provisioned and Commvault dedupe made more efficient via ‘micro-pruning’.

All these new FlashArray and FlashBlade features, including ActiveCluster, require no additional licenses or support costs, and are included with Pure’s Evergreen subscription. The new features in Purity for FlashArray are available immediately and in Q1 for Purity for  FlashBlade. 

Pure also announced file replication capabilities on FlashArray with Komprise.