IBM Systems and Technology Data Sheet

IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator
Innovative server-based caching software to accelerate I/O-intensive applications
As organizations are challenged by swelling data volumes, increasing demand for faster analytic insights, and rising data center energy costs, Flash storage is quickly becoming a key requirement to enable the smarter enterprise. Flash can speed response times of information gathering in servers and storage systems from milliseconds to microseconds. With no moving parts, Flash is also reliable, durable and energy efficient. Deploying and managing Flash across a diverse IT infrastructure, however, can be costly and a challenge for many organizations, as ongoing tuning and data placement is often needed to maintain system performance, particularly in virtual environments. IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator is a highly advanced intelligent caching software for IBM® System x®, BladeCenter® and IBM Flex System™ servers that enables Flash and hard drive storage to transparently and cost effectively work together. It delivers the high performance of Flash without the need for manual tuning and administration. Adaptable to almost every IT infrastructure, and especially useful in virtual environments, IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator enables enterprises to easily and immediately speed data-intensive applications, while lowering storage costs and increasing system density and utilization.


Transforms IBM Flash storage (IBM solid state drives (SSDs), High IOPS Adapters) into a transparent acceleration device to cache hot data off of a wide variety of SAN, NAS and DAS storage systems. Caches data within servers, close to the application workloads, delivering extremely low latency for virtual and physical server environments. Dynamic and easy caching that adapts to changing workloads and requires no tuning or data placement. Extends value and lowers cost of virtualization. Works with a wide variety of Flash, external storage and operating systems.

IBM Systems and Technology Data Sheet

Storage optimization
The demands of enterprises and their IT infrastructure continue to grow. That is especially true for storage, as the conf luence of Big Data, social, mobile and cloud technologies is creating an environment in the enterprise that demands faster, more efficient, access to business insights. Flash can provide that access quickly, increasing IOPS and lowering latency. Caching can make Flash more cost effective when used with other storage. IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator provides software and tools to determine and implement the right amount of cache and Flash that optimizes performance for your most important workloads and is the key to making caching with Flash easy. It is adaptable and efficient, delivering the performance, flexibility and cost savings enterprises demand.

FlashCache Storage Accelerator Aligns Performance with Applications




Accelerate I/O intensive applications
IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator transforms IBM High IOPS PCIe adapters and SSDs on System x, BladeCenter and IBM Flex System servers into transparent acceleration devices for virtualized and non-virtualized workloads, by caching hot data off any storage system, whether SAN or server based. IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator caches data on Flash within the server, close to application workloads, delivering low latency and dramatically increasing IOPS. With FlashCache Storage Accelerator, IBM customers can deploy the right amount of Flash they need to significantly accelerate application performance, eliminate I/O bottlenecks, increase virtual machine density per physical host and minimize incremental investments in external storage infrastructure.
Flash Management Console

SAN/NAS Storage


IBM Systems and Technology Data Sheet

Extend VMware virtualization
IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator even makes it possible to virtualize high-performance applications that were previously unable to be virtualized due to performance and system overhead concerns. Customers deploying FlashCache Storage Accelerator can recognize higher IOPS performance, faster rich-media web page loads, reduced I/O load and increased performance in primary storage—all realized in a virtualized environment with support for vMotion, DRS and HA. At the same time, FlashCache Storage Accelerator is organizationally viable because it is the first server-centric approach that integrates transparently with centralized storage to support VM mobility.

Easy to deploy and manage
Enterprises can deploy IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator to realize dramatic performance improvements without breaking their existing infrastructure or administration. No modifications are needed to effectively accelerate I/O performance for VMware, Windows or Linux environments, as operations are transparent and non-intrusive. The management console provides useful controls and statistics on performance and operations and allows for simple and on-the-fly adjustments.

IBM FlashCache Storage Accelerator at a glance
Product Features Virtualization-aware caching Dynamic cache reallocation Unified architecture High availability ready Heterogeneous server support Unified management support System Compatibility Supported servers Compatible Flash storage Guest operating systems Qualified System x, BladeCenter or Flex System servers IBM High IOPS Adapters or qualified IBM SSDs Microsoft Windows Server 2012 (x64-bit only) Microsoft Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 (x64-bit only) Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 5.6, 5.7, 5.8, 6.1, 6.2, 6.3 (64 bit) CentOS 5.6, 5.7, 5.8, 6.1, 6.2, 6.3 (64 bit) VMware ESXi 5.0, ESXi 5.1 Any VMware HCL-approved shared storage All block storage Disk, file, volume, and VM-specific caching Automatic cache allocation on vMotion without scripting Hypervisor, optional guest and physical modes Certified for Microsoft MSCS, SQL HA, Exchange HA Supports heterogeneous cache configurations across servers and guests vCenter plugin, web based management, CLI

Hypervisor support Compatible SAN/DAS for VMware Compatible SAN for Windows/Linux


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