Insights / Blog / Message in a Bottle(neck)? NVMe Can Help
February 9, 2022

Message in a Bottle(neck)? NVMe Can Help

Enterprise Strategy Group

Market Topics


GettyImages-158894448You’re driving down the highway, cruising at the speed limit (perhaps a bit over the speed limit), and then all of a sudden… traffic. It turns out there is construction up ahead and 3 lanes need to merge down to 1, causing a bottleneck of cars. While every car is capable of traveling the speed limit, there is simply not enough space for everyone to pass through the single lane while maintaining the speed they want to travel. When this happens, people feel like they are wasting time. In a similar way, when information reaches a bottleneck in a network, organizations may feel frustrated, knowing that there could be higher performance without the bottleneck. To combat this, many organizations have adopted Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) technology, and specifically NVMe over Fabrics (NVMe-oF), in order to open up more lanes for information travel. While typical NVMe is attached to the peripheral component interconnect (PCI) bus, NVMe-oF gives organizations more flexibility and bandwidth to circumvent the traffic bottleneck and move more information, more quickly.

In a constant effort to improve storage performance while keeping costs minimized, organizations are widely adopting NVMe technology, and specifically NVMe over Fabrics. NVMe is a way to access non-volatile memory, such as flash and solid-state drives (SSDs). While the alternative, SCSI, has only a singular queue for commands, NVMe can have up to 64,000 queues, which can have up to 64,000 commands each. Talk about a many-lane highway! And when NVMe is used over Fabrics, the network can be extended, allowing it to connect with any other network. NVMe-oF allows sharing of flash devices among servers, and helps organizations to maintain high performance storage networks with lower latency.

In an ESG research study, 70% of respondents reported already using NVMe over Fabrics or planning to deploy it in the next 12 months.[1] For those who have already adopted NVMe flash storage, the top reported realized benefits are: improved performance of existing applications (62%); increased performance of storage infrastructure to “future proof” the environment, or support new, more demanding workloads (59%); and improved resource utilization (50%).[2] To learn more about how NVMe is helping organizations to reach new levels of speed and efficiency, check out these reports, written by the ESG Validation Team: Broadcom NVMe over Fabric, Cisco HyperFlex, Dell PowerStore, IBM FlashSystem.

Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG, a division of TechTarget) is an IT analyst, research, validation, and strategy firm that gives the global IT community access to market intelligence and actionable insight. The Validation Team creates assets such as Validation reports, videos, webinars, and more, that help to communicate the technological and economic value of IT products and solutions.


[1] Source: ESG Research Report, Data Infrastructure Trends, November 2021

[2] ibid

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