EP18 – Geeking out about Persistent Memory, 3D XPoint, 3D NAND and all things flashy with Rob Peglar



In this 18th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast we welcome storage & flash memory industry veteran Rob Peglar (@peglarr) who is also President of Advanced Computation and Storage LLC, and Member of the SNIA Board of Directors. For the younger ones, Rob is the former VP of Advanced Storage Memory at Micron (hello 3D XPoint) and former Americas CTO for Isilon (then EMC, today Dell Technologies).

Podcast co-hosts Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) and Arjan Timmerman (@Arjantim) talk with Rob about many exciting topics such as the evolution of the computer industry from a memory and architectural concepts perspective, to then discuss about the latest innovations in persistent memory, 3D XPoint, 3D NAND and other industry matters.

This podcast is the follow-up to a private discussion / peer review we have had with Rob following the publication of our industry research paper on “The Solid State Memory Industry in 2019“.

We’re glad to have welcomed Rob on this episode and we thank him for the very exciting discussion and geeking!

Show schedule:

  • 0:00 Introductions & Rob gives some background information about him
  • 2:56 The early days of computing, the TECHunplugged research paper on Solid-State Memory, and about what originally was solid-state memory
  • 04:25 Is ferrite core memory the ancestor of persistent memory?
  • 05:15 Parallels between old days persistent memory and today’s persistent memory, and the art of writing code
  • 07:01 Talking about the SNIA, persistent memory, and development frameworks on how to write code for systems with persistent memory
  • 09:47 Is persistent memory the tip of the iceberg? what are the drivers to persistent memory adoption?
  • 13:12 Will persistent memory be used as a cache layer to address denser storage? What about QLC? The case of VAST Data
  • 14:49 Looking at 3D XPoint and persistent memory from a non storage-centric perspective; going beyond cache
  • 17:44 Isn’t this brave new world of persistent memory just a redux of what existed 40 years ago?
  • 19:00 Talking about 3D NAND QLC / TLC, Storage Field Day 18 and Western Digital  – are 3D NAND density projections around 128-Layer and above realistic? What are the alternatives?
  • 23:00 What about the rise of 3D NAND manufacturing in China?
  • 25:36 Discussing about the future of 3D XPoint in light of the Intel-Micron split, and other « competing » (or rather emerging) technologies (MRAM, etc.)
  • 29:52 Conclusion

EP17 – Storpool: Being the best in Block Based storage – with Boyan Ivanov



In the 17th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast we’re joined by Boyan Ivanov, co-founder of StorPool Storage. Podcast co-hosts Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) and Arjan Timmerman (@Arjantim) talk with Boyan about the Storpool product offering, how the product has evolved, why customers are choosing for the Storpool product and what can we expect from Storpool in the future.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Max: Introduction
  • 00:40 Boyan: What and who is Storpool and what do they do?
  • 02:32 Arjan: What is the Storpool journey?
  • 03:08 Boyan: The history and a little future of Storpool
  • 04:25 Max: What is the primary driver of Storpool clients to choose them?
  • 04:50 Boyan: Storpool wants to be the best at block based storage and delivers on this
  • 6:34 Max: Could you tell a bit more on the Architecture of your product?
  • 6:47 Boyan: Started coding at the age of ten and does a bit deeper dive into the architecture
  • 8:48 Arjan: Not being a Silicon Valley company, how do you compete (or not) with them?
  • 9:38 Max: Another question on that, is the Storpool customer base European or Global?
  • 9:54 Boyan: Answer both questions on competing against Silicon Valley companies and being a global company
  • 12:08 Max: So Storpool being funded in much different way doesn’t feel the VC pressure as much?
  • 12:41 Boyan: Correct. Having a business that is resilient and self-funded is a much better sustainable way to grow a company
  • 14:04 Arjan: What is a feature your customer base is requesting at the moment?
  • 14:42 Boyan: Software approach first (SDS) and Backup and Recovery second (and everything in between)
  • 16:49 Arjan: Is that than something you’re building into the platform, or do you have partners helping you provide certain solutions?
  • 17:25 Boyan: Storpool is a pure software company, but also a storage team as a service
  • 19:15 Arjan: Can Storpool customers use on-prem and cloud data storage as one?
  • 19:48 Boyan: Not yet, but as the way forward is hybrid for Storpool this will be added
  • 20:53 Arjan: What about API’s, is Storpool as a software company API driven?
  • 21:03 Boyan: The Storpool product is entirely API driven
  • A last question from Arjan is on monitoring and Boyan answers this that Storpool provides its own monitoring as well as giving customers the opportunity to use the API and other tools to hook into their already existing monitoring tools.

TECHunplugged would like to Thank Boyan and Storpool for this very informative podcast and we’re looking forward to hearing a lot more from this great company!


EP16 – Rubrik: beyond Data Protection and into Data Management – with Filip Verloy



In this 16th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast (recorded on 24-Jan-2019) we’re welcoming Filip Verloy, EMEA Field CTO for Rubrik. Podcast co-hosts Arjan Timmerman (@Arjantim) and Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) talk with Filip about a lot of things: his tenure at Rubrik, how the product has evolved, why customers are interested in Rubrik’s approach, what is that new Data Management trend, and what can we expect from Rubrik going forward.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Introduction
  • 01:10 Is three years at a startup a long time?
  • 01:46 Rubrik’s mission statement in Filip’s own words
  • 03:17 Is Rubrik a sort of “iPhone revolution” for Data Protection?
  • 06:31 What is the most valuable reason why customers choose Rubrik over their competition?
  • 10:22 Polaris & metadata collection use cases
  • 13:53 Radar: the first application on top of Polaris; the concept behind Radar and how it helps Rubrik customers
  • 17:04 Beyond Radar: what can we expect next, and what about leveraging metadata to comply with GDPR?
  • 20:26 Rubrik and the cloud / multicloud story: what can customers do, what are the options?
  • 23:05 Getting a unified view of all datasets across multiple clouds with Rubrik Polaris, and helping move data between clouds
  • 25:30 How can customers consume the Rubrik products / platform, and are there any OEM Alliances / Partnerships?

EP15 – Promethium: a data context solution for governance and analytics – Kaycee Lai



In the 15th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast we’re recording we’ll be talking with Kaycee Lai, founder and CEO of Promethium. Podcast co-host Arjan Timmerman (@Arjantim) talks with Kaycee Lai (@MrDedupe) on the technology that Promethium provides for their customers. This solution provides analytics and the correct information for companies with data lakes. Things like GDPR and other governance and regulations needed by the promethium customers can be addressed by the Promethium software, and thus the question arises if Promethium is the next level data management platform.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Introduction
  • 01:18 The challenge of massive data growth
  • 02:20 Understanding the context of data
  • 03:03 Are huge data lakes a requirement to use Promethium?
  • 04:20 Kaycee covers the complexity of IT environments and data fragmentation regardless of the existence or not of data lakes
  • 05:00 The challenge of knowing what to look for and how to handle the data after it has been found
  • 07:48 Extracting and handling the data is currently a manual process that is hard to scale
  • 09:03 Data types in scope for Promethium
  • 09:38 Is Promethium the next level of data management?
  • 10:19 What is needed to sort out the problem and how is it consumed?
  • 11:25 Has Promethium any customers yet, and what is their typical profile?
  • 13:40 What about the AI part – is Promethium really using AI, or is it just a fancy name for algorithms?
  • 16:20 What about partnerships and synergies with other companies?
  • 18:06 The Promethium team, growth and forecast for 2019
  • 19:17 Is Promethium available as a SaaS-only offering or are there any other options?
  • 20:45 Closing remarks

EP14 – AI / Technology and the Magic World of Regulations, Transparency and Ethics – Live at NetApp Insight with Greg Knieriemen (Part 2)



In this 14th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast we’re recording again live at NetApp Insight 2018 in Las Vegas. Podcast co-host Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) talks with former Tech Field Day delegate and now NetApp Chief Technologist Greg Knieriemen (@Knieriemen) about AI, emerging technology and legislation, transparency, ethics matters in a discussion that goes pretty much in all possible directions. Excuse us for the background music / noise, this was recorded at the NetApp insight conference in Las Vegas in a public space because we couldn’t find a quieter place.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Introduction
  • 01:06 Greg and Max discuss the impact of AI as a potential next industrial revolution
  • 03:30 AI as an opportunity, and making sure we can assess -and prevent- the potential negative consequences
  • 05:05 Aren’t some of the last industrial revolution’s negative outcomes a matter of wrong policies?
  • 06:10 Should the industry take a leadership role in governance, or should that remain with legislative powers? And what about employees getting vocal about the ethics of the companies they work for? Greg talks about technology being neutral, being a principled person, and the legitimate need for transparency.
  • 11:30 Open societies and gag orders
  • 13:15 Are legislators able to catch up with the pace of technology?
  • 17:50 Plugging back into AI – Isaac Asimov and the Three Laws of Robotics
  • 19:00 Science-Fiction or Dystopia? Greg isn’t scared about this 🙂

EP13 – NetApp Insight with Greg Kniereman Part 1



In this 13th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast we’re recording live at NetApp Insight 2018 in Las Vegas. Podcast co-host Arjan Timmerman (@Arjantim) talks with former Tech Field Day delegate and now NetApp Chief Technologist Greg Knieriemen (@Knieriemen) about his move to NetApp and the first day of NetApp Insight, with things like DataDriven, Ontap and AI. Excuse us for the background music / noise, this was recorded at the NetApp insight conference in Las Vegas in a public space because we couldn’t find a quieter place, we even had to move once :D.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Introduction
  • 00:21 Greg introduces himself
  • 00:26 Arjan asks Greg about his move from Hitachi to NetApp
  • 01:59 People from the industry are (re-)joining NetApp because of its current strategy and vision
  • 03:46 Greg starts talking about cultures in the company he works or worked
  • 04:20 Arjan asks Greg what topics were interesting to during the first Insight day
  • 04:43 Greg gives a statement he’s talking his own talk, to short into NetApp to do a NetApp statement
  • 07:49 The conversation continues on the new NetApp role Greg now has at NetApp
  • 09:34 Arjan asks Greg if he will build his own team or if he’ll join an existing team
  • 09:46 Greg answers how the team will (has been) build
  • 11:49 The discussion goes towards AI and Greg’s vision on that
  • 13:15 Talking about the futurist that spoke at the keynote during day 1 at NetApp insight
  • 14:30 A few words on the NetApp Data Fabric
  • 15:22 Closings the discussion – The end of Part 1

Make sure to stay tuned for Part 2 where Greg and Max talk further on AI and the regulation part of this.


EP12 – Community Talk: Creating Content, Becoming a Thought Leader, and Building Relationships – with Chanaka Ekanayake



In this 12th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast recorded live at NetApp Insight 2018 in Las Vegas, podcast co-host Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) bumps into fellow Tech Field Day delegate and IT community member Chanaka Ekanayake (Chan), Technology Practice Manager (Data Center and AWS) at Insight UK and ambushes him to discuss about IT community involvement, content creation and building relationships in the community. Excuse us for the background music / noise, this was recorded at The Delano in Las Vegas in a public space since we couldn’t find at the time a quieter place.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Intros & presentation
  • 01:15 How Chan started to get involved in the community
  • 02:15 From technical blogging to thought leadership content
  • 03:35 Decrypting vendor messaging and having a customer-centric approach
  • 04:45 Thought leadership content vs most visited articles – does it aligns with expectations?
  • 06:40 How does that content creation articulates with business activities
  • 07:55 What are Chan tips for people who are hesitating to make the jump into content creation
  • 09:18 There’s no failure in sharing information – be opinionated, don’t be afraid to criticize, but back it with facts
  • 11:45 Having a balanced view, taking a step back and looking at business outcomes beyond technology coolness
  • 13:49 Chan’s role at Insight UK (Nothing to do with NetApp Insight)
  • 14:20 Expectations from NetApp Insight 2018
  • 16:10 Building relationships, especially with community members – how to engage with peers at very large events
  • 17:20 On random encounters and friendships
  • 18:08 Where’s Chan headed at until the end of 2018
  • 18:54 Closing the discussion & Thanks

EP11 – Data Management with Komprise: Transformation without Disruption – with Krishna Subramanian



In this 11th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast, Krishna Subramanian (@cloudKrishna), President and COO at Komprise, joins hosts Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) and Arjan Timmerman (@arjantim) to discuss about Data Management and how Komprise helps organisations get the best value out of their file-based storage investments.

To complement the podcast and get a deeper dive on the topic, we recommend that you read Max’s article on Komprise (stub & link on TECHunplugged.io, article is on Max’s personal blog).

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Intros & presentation
  • 00:55 Komprise’s genesis and customers drowning in data; what Komprise solution is about
  • 02:30 Three co-founders & three startups – Distributed architectures – Krishna’s past experience in the industry
  • 04:05 Transformation without disruption: how is the Komprise solution delivered
  • 05:15 Komprise &  technology partners
  • 07:17 How Komprise gets into solving data sprawl issues – discovery, management, reporting & policies
  • 10:05 Getting started with Komprise, how easy it is to deploy and configure? And what needs to be done to be up and running?
  • 12:23 What is the sweet point from a capacity perspective to start using Komprise? How does Komprise scales?
  • 13:45 Savings! What space saving ratios are being achieved by Komprise customers?
  • 14:55 How do Komprise customers handle backups from a data management perspective? Awesome use case with Rubrik
  • 17:25 Arjan is mind-blown by the use of Komprise to further optimize costs on platforms such as Rubrik and Cohesity
  • 18:55 Data tiering and storage policies with Komprise
  • 21:03 Tape’s not dead! Using tape to further drive down costs and how to quickly recall cold data from tape
  • 22:50 Licensing model, features and expected cost saving achievements
  • 24:55 Where can we find more info about Komprise and what markets are currently in Komprise focus
  • 25:57 Closing the discussion & Thanks

EP10 – Computational Storage: A Paradigm Shift In The Storage Industry with Scott Shadley and NGD Systems



In this 10th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast, Scott Shadley (@SMShadley), Marketing Executive at NGD Systems, joins hosts Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) and Arjan Timmerman (@arjantim) for an insightful discussion about a potentially transformational event in the storage industry: the advent of computational storage.

To complement the podcast and get a deeper dive on the topic, we recommend that you get your own free copy of TECHunplugged Industry Insights early market research on Computational Storage, available here.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Intros & presentation
  • 00:30 Recapitulating on our encounter with Scott & NGD Systems
  • 01:10 Arjan quotes our Industry Insights early market paper & how one of our quotes moved Scott
  • 01:35 Scott covers his past experience and gets back to his feelings towards this transformational event
  • 02:43 Arjan & Scott cover Scott’s journey in the storage industry
  • 04:13 Max asks Scott about his take on the promise of computational storage, how we got there, and how it works
  • 06:27 Max returns on his computational storage epiphany, mentioning his visit to the Computer History Museum and how computing architectures are fundamentally the same since the 60’s
  • 07:49 Scott covers the genesis of computational storage as a tech, as a market segment, and as definition
  • 09:15 Arjan gets back on Scott’s point and asks about whether there is an industry consortium and existing standards
  • 10:42 Max covers the market segment and established actors, asking if there are more companies
  • 11:35 Scott provides feedback on the question and talks about how the industry is coming together from the vendor, chip manufacturer and consumer perspective
  • 1 4:01 Arjan asks about NGD Systems and the product readiness, customers, etc.
  • 16:38 Storage Field Day and the « Aaaaah » moments. Is computational storage going to take off? What will be its markets?
  • 19:20 Predictions for computational storage growth
  • 20:00 The joy of witness a potentially huge transformation event in the industry
  • 21:30 The use cases of computational storage – from NGD Systems’ perspective
  • 23:30 Will the transformation of the car-making industry (move to semi/fully autonomous vehicles packed full with sensors) benefit to the computational storage industry? Will the computational market grow with this use case?
  • 25:30 Closing the discussion & Thanks

EP09 – Veeam: Building Communities, Infrastructure-as-Code, Data Management and Latest Product News with Michael Cade



In this 9th episode of the TECHunplugged Podcast, Michael Cade (@MichaelCade1), Global Technologist at Veeam, joins hosts Max Mortillaro (@darkkavenger) and Arjan Timmerman (@arjantim) for a really fun discussion around Veeam.

Show schedule:

  • 00:00 Intros & presentation
  • 00:30 It’s that time of the year again: conferencing season!
  • 01:20 What is the perspective of working for a vendor when one comes from the IT community ranks?
  • 03:42 From Data Protection to Infrastructure as Code – what Veeam is showcasing lately at industry events
  • 06:58 Chef or Ansible? Deploying Veeam in an automatic fashion, which platforms are preferred?
  • 09:00 Demoing at a major conference: building a cloud-based SDDC with policy & behavioural-driven workload protection
  • 11:34 Data Management & Veeam: everybody now does data management, what is Veeam’s story? Michael covers the N2WS acquisition by Veeam, Veeam One integrations as well as DataLabs
  • 16:49 FastSCP for the win: a flashback in time! Memories from the podcast participants
  • 19:35 What’s coming up with Veeam product updates in the upcoming weeks/months? Besides VMware and Nutanix support, Office 365 services, Veeam B&R, Veeam One…
  • 21:17 Veeam Cloud Archive Tier – A software-defined backup storage
  • 25:00 Closing the discussion & Thanks