May 5, 2016

Excelero will take off very soon

Excelero (, innovator in scale-out block storage, will unveil officially the solution very soon. The web site is still empty so the info is not very available. I had the privilege to attend MSST 2016 and Josh Goldenhar, VP Products, and Yaniv Romem, CTO and co-founder, were there to present and speak about the Excelero approach. The company was founded 2 years ago, received $20M from Battery Ventures and has of today 25 people. David Flynn, CEO and Founder of Primary Data, has also invested in the company and is a board advisor. Excelero develops a very promising product named NVMesh, a pure software product that leverages, NVMe SSD, SR-IOV and RDMA. The philosophy, still a shared-nothing one, offered a decentralized server-based super fast flash-based block storage. NVMe SSDs are connected locally to individual servers and then connected via a super fast network. The result is a very fast shared block storage pool available from every host. The first results have demonstrated super results 20 to 30 times better than "classic" AFA. NVMesh allows remote NVMe devices to operate like local devices under 100 microseconds. In details NVMesh has 3 components:
  1. a client block driver running on each participating node who needs and uses NVMesh logical block volumes,
  2. a target module for NVMe target drives identification linked to the management module,
  3. and a storage management module to offer centralized management via WebUI and RESTful API.

In term of features, NVMesh can built RAID 0, RAID 1/10 volumes and "wide striping" across multiple NVMe SSDs connected to other participating servers. Availability is reached by multi-pathing and mirrored volumes. Today 128 targets can participate per NVMesh instance. For performance, the product is very fast with 4M read and 2.8M write 4k IOPS, 16GB/s throughput and super low latency with 90µs/25µs for read and write from client to server.
A pretty interesting data sheet with Mellanox and Supermicro was presented recently at the OpenStack Summit, with Cinder integration and is available here. It shows what is probably one of the fastest block implementation for OpenStack. Yaniv Romem, CTO of Excelero, has presented the approach also during the Flash Memory Summit 2015 and I have extracted 2 interesting slides:

Excelero has demonstrated a super fast, robust, efficient and none intrusive product with great simplicity. It will be introduce in July and the pricing model should be based on number of drives and servers but independent of the capacity.
The product reminds me what FlashGrid is doing, yes dedicated to Oracle world but pretty similar philosophy. I invited you to read the post I wrote about FlashGrid in October 2015. Next months will be super interested. Excelero belongs to the small group of 2016 storage gems.

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