Introducing the Attala Storage SmartNIC

Attala is now shipping its Storage SmartNIC to leading cloud service providers as announced here. These operators of cloud infrastructure are hitting a revenue, cost and performance wall as they increasingly deploy NVMe SSDs for both instance (aka ephemeral, local) storage and persistent (remote) storage to address the growth of AI, ML and real-time analytics workloads.

For instance storage - that is locally attached - NVMe SSDs promise extraordinary performance for newer workloads. But their locality translates to higher costs and low resource utilization since the SSD resources are stranded. And operators have been loath to disaggregate storage using newer NVMe-over-fabrics technologies due to offsetting costs and complexity. Futhermore, today’s use of virtualization software robs from NVMe performance and requires that several CPU cores and memory be sequestered to support the higher demands of NVMe technology (vs traditional hard-drives and SATA-SSDs) which lowers revenues for public cloud operators.

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The Attala Storage SmartNIC leverages the performance and efficiency of a hardware-based design to virtualize and pool locally-attached NVMe SSDs for instance storage. The NVMe SSDs stay “in-server” but are accessible and fungible across all servers - virtualized NVMe resources are automously and transparently migrated between servers for optimization/operational benefits. The Attala hardware design also enables a “zero-footprint” solution that delivers bare-metal NVMe performance and frees up CPU cores and memory thereby boosting operator revenues. An earlier blog describes how Amazon AWS used a hardware approach to reclaim over $5,000 per year per server in AWS revenue.

The same solution also provides a zero-footprint and high-performance RDMA solution for operators’ persistent storage that typically resides in a remote storage rack accessed via custom storage protocols. The SmartNIC boosts the performance for access to NVMe resources in the storage racks while simultaneously eliminating the need to sequester CPU cores and memory.

Obviously, there’s a lot more detail to the solution. So, please contact Attala Systems for additional details on the Attala Storage SmartNIC.

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