PowerFlex 4.5: Where Agility Meets Innovation

Unlock breakthrough efficiency and multicloud versatility for your workloads with PowerFlex and APEX Block Storage for public clouds.

In today’s digital era, businesses are at a crossroads of opportunity and complexity. The meteoric rise of data, propelled by advancements in artificial intelligence and the spread of connected devices, offers both unprecedented growth potential and significant challenges. While AI-driven insights herald new avenues for business differentiation, the infrastructure underpinning this growth often feels the strain. With generative AI (GenAI) projected to add nearly $10 trillion to global GDP over the next 10 years1, the moment to invest in a modern infrastructure is now. Today, we aim to put forth a dynamic resolution with the release of PowerFlex 4.5, APEX Block Storage for Microsoft Azure and the AWS Outposts ready designation for PowerFlex.

Enter PowerFlex: a Beacon in the Complexity

PowerFlex software-defined infrastructure is architected to keep pace with the dynamic needs of today’s workloads. What sets PowerFlex apart is its unparalleled performance and scalability, seamlessly consolidating various diverse workloads to ensure organizations can confidently deliver under the most demanding conditions. Its suite of features offers unmatched agility, including the capacity to scale compute and storage independently or in tandem in on-premises environments. The built-in automation tools streamline DevOps processes, enhancing overall IT efficiency. Its innate resilience is evident with a self-healing architecture that minimizes downtime and allows businesses to function smoothly. The platform is designed to meet the most rigorous performance metrics and service-level agreements (SLAs). By embracing a software-first architecture, PowerFlex offers unprecedented consolidation, optimizing the value derived from IT investments. With broad support for hyperscaler and container orchestration platforms for block and file, across bare metal and hypervisors, delivered on a single infrastructure platform2 — PowerFlex’s adaptability is evident. In sum, PowerFlex plays a key role in strategic agility, ensuring businesses remain resilient, efficient and forward-looking.

Building on these foundational capabilities, the PowerFlex 4.5 release introduces significant advancements. Deeply rooted in our unwavering commitment to software-driven innovation, this iteration promises a continuously modern storage experience while enriching the platform’s core strengths, pioneering breakthrough efficiency and enabling trailblazing multicloud capabilities.

Breakthrough Efficiency

With this release, the CloudIQ integration with PowerFlex has been further enriched. The CloudIQ suite now offers an array of capabilities that significantly enhance system visibility, monitoring and real-time license management that cover both PowerFlex and APEX Block Storage for public clouds. Organizations can proactively address issues, optimize infrastructure and elevate performance. These features ensure unparalleled control, improved efficiency and peace of mind from data-driven decision-making.

We’ve also introduced enhancements in management and operations, including enriched alert reporting and an expanded range of supported operating systems. These are all designed to provide a seamless and efficient customer experience.

The consolidation prowess of PowerFlex is further amplified with this release. While PowerFlex remains predominantly a block-based storage solution, its capability to address file use cases has been expanded. The upgrades offer users benefits like a single global namespace for enhanced capacity, unified storage pool management and impressive file scalability improvements such as a 400% increase in NAS Servers2 and 22x more file snapshots3. Such improvements arm our customers with essential tools, ensuring adept data management, sustained peak performance and scalability aligned with future growth.

For more information, read the Dell PowerFlex 4.5 solution brief.

Expanding the Multicloud World

At Dell Technologies World 2023, we spotlighted the intricacies and challenges of multicloud environments and introduced our pioneering APEX Block Storage for AWS aimed at enhancing public cloud storage and offering operational consistency. Today, we’re thrilled to unveil APEX Block Storage for Microsoft Azure, marking a significant stride in our multicloud journey and exemplifying our commitment to innovation and seamless integration.

This offering enables customers to run diverse workloads in the public cloud without performance, scale and resiliency limitations. The solution provides seamless data mobility and interoperability across multicloud environments and multiple availability zones. With cornerstone features like extreme performance, unmatched scalability, flexible deployment options and enterprise-grade resiliency, organizations can optimize a wide range of block-based workloads from databases and analytics to Dev/Test, virtualization and containers. By marrying cloud agility with proven enterprise capabilities, APEX Block Storage for Microsoft Azure empowers customers to scale capacity and performance to meet even the most demanding workloads and SLAs in multicloud settings.

For more information, read the APEX Block Storage for Microsoft Azure solution brief and APEX Block Storge for AWS solution brief and visit Dell APEX Storage for Public Cloud.

It’s worth noting that our commitment to strategic agility extends beyond the new features just described. Today, we also announced that PowerFlex has received Amazon Web Services (AWS) Outposts Ready designation providing yet another example of Dell PowerFlex’s versatility and ability to interoperate across an ever-expanding multicloud ecosystem. Incredibly, the combination of AWS Outposts and Dell PowerFlex can deliver 12 times more IOPs compared to a native Outposts deployment4, and the performance can linearly scale with additional compute.

For more information, please read the Dell PowerFlex is now AWS Outposts Ready solution brief.

Invest in a Modern Infrastructure Today

In the rapidly evolving digital age, adaptive and powerful IT infrastructure is more essential than ever. Bolstered by these latest enhancements, PowerFlex and APEX Block Storage for AWS and Microsoft Azure showcase Dell Technologies’ steadfast commitment to equipping organizations for both today’s demands and tomorrow’s challenges. From breakthrough efficiencies to pioneering multicloud capabilities, we aim to consistently be at the forefront, providing our customers with unparalleled tools and support.

1 IDC, Generative AI: The Path to Impact, Document number: # EUR151153223, Aug 2023
2 Based on Dell analysis, April 2022
3 Based on Dell analysis, August 2023
4 Based on a July 2023 Dell internal testing comparing 100% Read workload results for PowerFlex (running v3.6) using AWS Outposts instance stores (4 x i3en.12xlarge) and single compute instance versus standard AWS Elastic Block Storage (gp2) configuration (compute and storage). Actual results may vary.

About the Author: Shannon Champion

Shannon leads Product Marketing for Dell Technologies’ leading and comprehensive portfolio of primary storage, HCI, and CI offerings. Shannon joined Dell EMC in 2014, helped launch the first EMC hyper-converged solution in that year, and has been part of the hyperconverged marketing team since then. As a marketing and sales enablement expert, Shannon has more than 20 years of experience in several cross-functional and management roles within IT including product marketing, business development, manufacturing and quality with both direct manufacturers and channel partners. Before joining EMC, Shannon led Cisco product management and marketing for a national channel partner, PC Connection; was a product marketing manager and quality engineer for the IBM/Lenovo PC Division; and worked as a manufacturing process engineer for IBM’s microelectronics division. Shannon received her M.B.A. from Kenan-Flagler School of Business in North Carolina, and her M.S. and B.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Rochester in upstate NY. Dell Technologies helps organizations and individuals build their digital future and transform how they work, live and play. The company provides customers with the industry’s broadest and most innovative technology and services portfolio for the data era. Our industry-leading converged infrastructure, servers, storage and data protection technologies enables organizations to modernize, automate, and transform their data center.