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IBM Spectrum Fusion HCI – Product Brief

Published September 17th, 2021. Concise overview of IBM Spectrum Fusion HCI. Product Brief includes EvaluScale reviewing methodology, highlights, overview and more. Download the full Product Brief now!

IBM Spectrum Fusion HCI is a hyperconverged system for running containerized workloads on the Red Hat OpenShift platform.

Like other hyperconverged infrastructure products, IBM Spectrum Fusion HCI combines storage, compute and networking into a common x86 hardware infrastructure. But Spectrum Fusion HCI is different from most traditional hyperconverged infrastructure products because it was developed more with a focus on containerized workloads versus virtual machines. While Spectrum Fusion does support Red Hat Virtualization Manager for virtual machines, it does not support VMware VMs. Another difference of Spectrum Fusion HCI is that it is file-based storage instead of block-based storage used by most HCI products

The Fusion HCI product is the first version of IBM’s Spectrum Fusion platform to come to market. IBM plans to follow with software-defined storage version of Spectrum Fusion that will support a range of hardware appliances from IBM partners.

IBM Spectrum Fusion includes containerized versions of IBM’s Spectrum Scale and IBM Spectrum Protect Plus data protection software, plus IBM Spectrum Fusion Management software along with bare-metal deployment of Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform. The HCI appliance uses NVMe storage.

Spectrum Scale 

Spectrum Scale is a parallel file system, designed for large-scale storage environments with high performance and high-capacity requirements. These include AI, big data and analytics use cases. One of its key features is a global namespace for access to large numbers of files. Spectrum Scale’s AI Data Acceleration feature allows access and data movement between Spectrum Scale and on-premises or cloud object storage within a single namespace.

Even before Spectrum Fusion, IBM added a containerized client to Spectrum Scale that allows container-based applications to access the Scale filesystem. Spectrum Scale also supports the container storage interface (CSI) driver that provides storage access to containers.

Spectrum Fusion HCI uses Spectrum Scale Erasure Code Edition (ECC). Spectrum Scale ECC provides network-dispersed erasure coding, distributing data and metadata across the internal disks of a cluster of servers. This allows IBM Spectrum Scale to use internal disks as reliable storage with low overhead and high performance.

Spectrum Fusion HCI can also include Spectrum Scale’s Active File Manager (AFM) for file migration and remote caching. AFM controls movement and deletion of data based on administrator defined policies and an extensive set of pre-defined metadata. AFM extends distributed file clustering to multiple sites (geographically dispersed) with a global namespace across the sites. AFM in Spectrum Fusion requires an optional pair of servers.

IBM Spectrum Fusion HCI Product Brief Includes:

  • Overview
  • Highlights
  • Usage and Deployment
  • EvaluScale Table
  • Evaluator Group Opinion

Download the full Product Brief now!

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