Technology Assessment

The objective of this study is to provide a framework for testing an all–solid state storage system, commonly known as the all-flash array. IDC performed substantial research to understand the prevailing use cases, testing methodologies, and tools; worked with independent labs; conducted vendor interviews; and reexamined existing IDC research. The results of the research generated an extremely large and timeconsuming test plan for testing AFA. In a perfect world, an end user or IT organization would like to run every test to gain the maximum amount of knowledge. However, time and budgetary constraints of the real world usually require a smaller subset of testing be performed. Therefore, we began to investigate what is a reasonable time period to invest for testing an all-flash storage array. The acceptable time period may vary per organization depending on requirements; however, the goal of this document is to provide a framework that would require a week of end-user effort for testing. We reevaluated what tests are important versus “nice to have” so that we could complete testing within a week. Throughout the document we discuss the decision points, rationale, and where (in IDC’s opinion) testing cycles can be maximized given limited resources. We would like to stress this document is designed to be a flexible framework. Ultimately the decision of what is important to test and not to test will be made within each individual organization.