Case Study: Eliminating the Storage Bottleneck with a Flash Array


August 21, 2017

Every business depends on their applications to some degree. Whether it is their voice, email, active directory, or others, the application ecosystem needs to be up-to-date, accessible, and performing at its best for the business to remain competitive. However, when a business relies primarily on one large application to function, the stakes are much higher. High latency in this app could send ripples throughout the company slowing down productivity across the board.

When such a situation was affecting one of our clients, they contacted Mindsight to find a solution.


The Problem


Our client’s business relied on a tier one application called Sightline for many of their organizational needs. From shipping data to accounting, almost the entire business in one way or another depended on the performance of this single application. Under normal circumstances, it would run at adequate speeds, and the company could use the application without much difficulty. But, at the end of each month, different processes across the business would put too much strain on the application and performance would grind to a halt for everyone.

For example, if finance were running a payroll report at the end of the month, it would tap into the same database as the rest of the business. During these times, simple functions like moving from window to window within the app could take upwards of thirty seconds. Because the whole business relied on Sightline, the whole business would grind to a halt.


The Solution


The Mindsight consultants determined that the performance bottleneck for Sightline was caused by the storage array. Our client was using a local disk based storage solution. It simply wasn’t able to keep up with the demands of the business at peak times.

Instead, Mindsight recommended the FlashArray//M10 from Pure Storage. We opted for an all-flash array over disk alternatives, because Pure Storage would provide lower latency and higher IOPS for the environment.


The Results


The FlashArray//M10 proved to be the perfect storage solution for our client. In addition to supplying ample storage for the Sightline app, we were able to migrate their entire environment onto the all-flash array. This provided them with a new storage solution running at 250,000 IOPS and improving the performance of all their applications. Also, the extensive wait times to run reports or navigate the Sightline application was drastically reduced. What once took thirty seconds to complete would now take less than five.

Furthermore, the client was able to achieve a compression rate of 8:1, which was well above the average for Pure Storage solutions. Pure Storage uses a series a deduplication and compression techniques to expand the capacity of their storage solutions. In this instance, our client was able to store eight times as much data on their flash array than they could with equivalent space on a hard disk drive. If our client had eighty gigabytes of data, they would only need ten gigs of space on the flash drive.

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About Mindsight

Mindsight, a Chicago IT services provider, is an extension of your team. Our culture is built on transparency and trust, and our team is made up of extraordinary people – the kinds of people you would hire. We have one of the largest expert-level engineering teams delivering the full spectrum of IT services and solutions, from cloud to infrastructure, collaboration to contact center. Our highly-certified engineers and process-oriented excellence have certainly been key to our success. But what really sets us apart is our straightforward and honest approach to every conversation, whether it is for an emerging business or global enterprise. Our customers rely on our thought leadership, responsiveness, and dedication to solving their toughest technology challenges.

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