Dell Container Storage Modules for Kubernetes Environments

Changes in the development and deployment of applications are driving the storage business to adapt significantly as well. Applications are migrating to containerized environments that allow developers to package their code into self-contained units that can be easily deployed and run on any server. As a result, containers and Kubernetes are gaining popularity. Adoption of Kubernetes has grown to the point that it is currently the most widely used container orchestration platform. 

Organizations are redesigning their applications to conform to this new model, and storage solutions that enable containerized environments are in great demand. The storage can be used to store the containers themselves, as well as the data sources for containerized apps. This can be done either on-premises or in the public cloud.

Container Storage Modules (CSM) from Dell Technologies enable clients to employ standard storage arrays as multi-tenant, feature-rich storage for contemporary Kubernetes-based applications. Dell customers have access to a highly-available Kubernetes infrastructure with replication, multi-tenancy, and resiliency support, helping to ensure a positive Kubernetes experience and development success. Dell CSM storage modules extend the value of a standard infrastructure by enabling you to deliver a feature-rich, multi-tenant, multi-use storage layer for today’s most modern applications. The Dell GitHub documentation can be found here.

Public cloud, on-premises, and hybrid storage deployment options are supported by Dell. Dell PowerScale, PowerMax,PowerStore are examples of purpose-built storage arrays. PowerFlex is a hyper-converged solution that includes software-defined storage and compute. Dell PowerProtect Data Manager, which provides on premises and public cloud backup protection (on AWS and Azure), can be used to safeguard the Kubernetes environment using snapshots and backups.

The CSI specification defines a set of interfaces for storage controllers and storage devices to discover each other and communicate and Dell has implemented the CSI for all their storage offers. The specification is versioned, with the current version being 1.3. The entirety of Dell’s innovative CSM software lineup is compatible with CSI v1.3.

A primary benefit of CSM is the ability to implement group- and crash-consistent snapshots that capture the state of all data stored on a set of storage devices at a particular instant. This means that data replication, in particular for disaster recovery planning and data protection use cases, is supported through CSM. Replication is also purposed for other customer-specific use cases.

Dell Technologies has created systems with Kubernetes in mind that are capable of overcoming the majority of the limits imposed by CSI and has even extended these capabilities with additional services. Dell customers can utilize traditional storage arrays as multi-tenant, feature-rich enterprise storage for modern apps running on Kubernetes. CSM gives Dell customers a highly available Kubernetes infrastructure with replication, multi-tenancy, and resiliency support for a great Kubernetes deployment. The offerings are designed to eliminate the headaches of running Kubernetes in production by eliminating resource contention issues that result from other hyperconverged storage platforms.

Dell is offering an effective Kubernetes solution and has integrated Kubernetes into many of its storage solutions. It’s encouraging to see Dell working so quickly and diligently to expand its portfolio of capabilities and strive to be the storage vendor required in the Kubernetes stack.

McKnight Consulting Group