At IBM InterConnect 2015, I had the opportunity to sit down with Clod Barerra, Distinguished Engineer and Chief Technical Strategist for IBM System Storage, for an ad hoc discussion of software-defined storage, hyper-converged infrastructure, and IBM’s evolving strategy for both.  We were supposed to focus on XIV, which IBM has returned to a pure software state (what it originally was when they bought the company) and rebranded as part of Big Blue’s Spectrum Storage portfolio.  But, when I get together with Clod, it is impossible to stay with just one topic.

The interview went on and on, consuming nearly an entire tape (yes, I said tape).  We cut it down to create this multi-segment interview that is well worth the time to watch in its entirety if you want to get inside the head of IBM with respect to software-defined storage and the future of monolithic storage arrays and other legacy devices and topologies.

We start with the basic question about IBM’s decision to take XIV back to its software layer roots…


Clod goes on to answer our questions about the juxtaposition of Spectrum Accelerate (XIV) and z13 Mainframe’s capability to host 8000 virtual machines.  Is there any intention to create a software-defined storage architecture for use with a mainframe?  More interesting to me is the answer he gives to the idea that software-defined storage does not include capacity management, only services management.  I disagree with this definition which seems to be coming from a certain hypervisor vendor that is 80 percent owned by a storage array maker…


To my delight, IBM’s announcements around Spectrum Accelerate (XIV) and software-defined storage were devoid of promises that SDS would make virtualized apps run faster, which, while bogus, is an oft repeated claim of other SDS vendors.  His response is very interesting…


Midway through the clip, we told him of our concern that a lot of software-defined storage implementations, so called hyper-converged storage, flatten out the storage infrastructure thereby negating the benefits of tiering.  We wanted IBM’s take on this, and got a coherent response.

I will post the final two parts of the interview tomorrow.  I hope you will find them as interesting as I do and will join me in thanking Clod for sharing so much in this interview.

I also look forward to seeing Clod and other IBM Systems Storage experts at Edge 2015 this April.  I will take this opportunity again to pass along info about early bird registration as I hope to see many of my readers at the show.

Register on or before April 5 & save on z Systems Education Sessions at #IBMEdge 2015  #Mainframe #IBMz

Also, for the record, I am being compensated by IBM for delivering five sessions at TechEdge and for participating in their Social Media/Blogger program.  This, in no way, colors my views as expressed in my blog posts, presentations or social media posts — but it does get me travel, room and board at the event.

More Clod Barerra shortly.



Thank you…Thank you…Thank you!

by Administrator on March 31, 2015

smjonMucho gracias!  Molto grazie! Merci beaucoup!  Danke schoen!  Arigato gozaimasu!  Большое спасибо!  And so forth…

To everyone who made today’s webcast, A Hype-Free Guide to Hyper-Converged Infrastructure, a big success.  I am told that attendance was four times what was expected and most everyone stayed to the end.  Sponsor DataCore Software was delighted (they called me a Rock Star!) and so am I.

I apologize for my coughing spasm in the middle of the preso, some sort of pollen is coming into bloom today.  If you missed anything, a replay is available here.

Thanks again, everyone.  Your interest makes doing this worthwhile.


From InterConnect to Edge 2015

by Administrator on March 31, 2015

Seems like I was just in Las Vegas covering the IBM InterConnect event.  It was a great show and a remarkable cobble of new school and old school types working together to address the needs of organizations in the face of the M-Commerce revolution.  I have finally received approval on some video interviews I did while I was at the show.  Fortunately, the have stood the test of time — even the extremely contracted “stale by” dates of current technology topics.


I wanted to share, first, an interview with a fellow who impressed the heck out of me when he presented during one of the IBM InterConnect keynote sessions.  Ron Peri is the CEO of Radixx International, an airline reservation services provider located in my home state of Florida.  He is also a very tech-savvy business leader who is leading the charge back to mainframes.  I will let him speak for himself about his decision to return to the System z after leaving the mainframe platform behind a couple of decades ago.


I have more interviews to share, including a series with smart guy Clod Barerra, which I will post shortly.  Now I need to get back to work on the five sessions I am preparing to present at, you guessed it, IBM Edge 2015.  There is an early bird registration thing going on right now, I’m told, so I will pass it along…


Register on or before April 5 & save on z Systems Education Sessions at #IBMEdge 2015  #Mainframe #IBMz

For the record, I am being compensated by IBM for delivering five sessions at TechEdge and for participating in their Social Media/Blogger program.  This, in no way, colors my views as expressed in my blog posts, presentations or social media posts — but it does get me travel, room and board at the event.


JWTwhynotI returned from Paris a week or so ago, where I got to present about Hype and Hyper-Converged Infrastructure to about 250 DataCore Software partners and customers from a perch on the first stage of the Eiffel Tower.  It was a mind blowing experience and seemed to be well received by the attendees.  So much so, I guess, they asked me to do a presentation TODAY at noon EDT on the web.

I have seen tweets about it for the past week, but decided to add my own last minute push.
Basically, I will be delivering a synopsis of something I just wrote on the top ten things to consider when you evaluate the competing hyper-converged infrastructure solutions being peddled today.  If you have about 45 minutes during lunch (or want to see a replay), consider yourself invited to this webinar.


Register here.


Getting My Presos…and Luggage…Together

March 9, 2015

Looks like a crazy travel schedule coming up.  Tomorrow:  I am visiting Ft. Lauderdale to conduct some video interviews with George Teixeira and Ziya Aral, my friends of years and the bosses of DataCore Software.  I am looking forward to getting their take on software-defined storage and virtual SAN and to catching up with all […]

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March 9, 2015

 It seems like most of the storage companies I am encountering these days are falling in line with the software-defined aka hyper-converged aka virtual SAN aka direct-attached-to-clustered-servers trope.  Not that all of these products or technologies are all the same, mind you, but everyone seems on board with the idea of pulling value-add functionality off […]

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Gearing Up for IBM Interconnect Day 2

February 24, 2015

I have been reviewing sessions today at the IBM Interconnect show in Las Vegas and have ID’d one called The New z13: Redefining Digital Business through the Integration of Cloud, Mobile and Analytics that I will attend in about an hour.  This might be a bit of a rehash of the presentations I saw at the […]

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IBM Interconnect Update Day 1

February 23, 2015

Being one of the older folks at the IBM Interconnect show, I need to confess to being a bit dazed and confused.  This show is definitely a mix of older technology norms and newer memes.  The opening keynotes were as good as any I have seen at a show of this type — a good mix […]

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z13 Momentum Building

February 22, 2015

I can’t remember the last time that the mainframe received the kind of attention in “mainstream” tech publications that it has in recent weeks.  Following a brilliant launch event for IBM’s new z System offering in mid-January, Big Blue has taken the show on the road throughout the world.  Able evangelists include IBM VP Kathryn […]

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Tape in 2015: Still a Comer

January 27, 2015

I recently read a blog at Storage Switzerland that got me a little aggravated.  Even more aggravating is the fact that my recent switchover from BlackBerry to a Samsung Galaxy Note 4 “phablet” left behind my link to the irritating piece.  I have been all over George’s site, he is the proprietor of Storage Switzerland, […]

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