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Tuning workload performance for Persistent Memory Just Got Easier

By Jay Walstrum - 2018-01-24

Today at the SNIA Persistent Memory Summit, Brett Williams, Sr. Business Development Manager for Enterprise, provided an overview of where Micron is with the rollout of the persistent Memory. Brett mentioned that Micron is now in production with 32GB NVDIMMs, and emphasized that the infrastructure for persistent memory is now in place. To stress this fact, he showed a demonstration of 16GB of persistent memory in a 14G Dell platform, using Enmotus Software.

SNIA Demo with Micron NVDIMM

Dell 14G PowerEdge server with 192GB of Micron NVDIMM and a
1.6TB NVMe SSD demonstrating read/write patterns to show
performance with and without using NVDIMM.

So now that it’s ready, how do we realize the benefits of persistent memory? Customers want higher performance and lower latency. Using NVDIMM in byte mode (as a true memory location) provides the best solution possible, but customers must rewrite their applications to take advantage of this performance. Current applications can use NVDIMMs quickly by addressing it like a storage tier (block mode access). Either case requires some effort to adjust applications and workloads to take maximum advantage. Workloads and Applications are not all the same. Each must be analyzed to determine best ROI when adding NVDIMM as part of a storage tier.

But how do you know what’s best for your applications? Ideally, you need a tool which analyzes workloads without re-writing the applications. A tool that would watch workload traffic of "cold", "cool" and "hot" data and automatically and dynamically adjust the locations or reads/writes into media. This would clearly show when to use persistent memory versus NVMe drives or slower SSD storage. This is where the Enmotus Software comes in. Their tool can even run analytics that enable IT ( and memory vendors like Micron) to provide guidance on hardware for specific applications and workloads. The tools helpful to optimize your systems with NVDIMMs are available today. 2018 will be an exciting year as more companies learn to explore and categorize workloads where persistent memory can have the most impact.

Stay tuned and watch for more details on Enmotus tools available to analyze workloads and tune your system for performance.

Jay Walstrum

Jay Walstrum

Jay Walstrum is a Senior System Architect for Micron’s Compute and Networking Business Unit, where he is focusing on new opportunities in the three to five-plus year timeframe. In his role, he also applies innovative technologies and memory architectures to solve customer system-level challenges.

Jay’s responsibilities include working closely with a market-strategy team to identify new technology, applications, product/architecture specifications, customers, and markets for new product concepts. He also actively works with customer system architects, technologists, third-party developers, and Micron’s Research and Development team to identify, define, and architect innovative memory solutions.

Before beginning with Micron in January 2013, Jay spent 22 years at Xilinx Corp, where he held various positions ranging from the Director of Quality, to the Senior Product Planning Manager, to the Strategic and Technical Marketing Leader.

Jay holds a BSEE from University of Southern California. He holds 11 patents in the areas of FPGA system Solutions and memory interface architecture.