Pure Storage, Microsoft expands strategic partnership  around Azure VMware Solution

This is Pure’s first out-of-the box option around a specific use case for Azure Cloud as they move beyond general purpose hybrid storage.

Dan Kogan, Vice President, Product Management and Product Marketing, at Pure Storage

Today, Pure Storage is announcing an expanded, multi-year strategic product and go-to-market partnership with Microsoft. It brings Pure Storage’s storage capabilities to native Microsoft Azure services by leveraging Azure’s new Premium SSD v2 disks and introducing them to Azure VMware Solution [AVS] in preview.

Azure is already a significant strategic partner for Pure, and even given their strong relationship with AWS, Pure considers the Azure relationship to be the more significant.

“We have the same product in both – Pure Cloud Block Store – but our Azure partnership is stronger,” said Dan Kogan, Vice President, Product Management and Product Marketing, at Pure Storage. “We launched Pure Cloud Block Store in AWS first and followed up with Azure twelve months later. Azure is more significant because we are moving beyond general purpose hybrid storage to create out of the box options with Azure Cloud. This is the first such solution for specific use cases that we are rolling out.”

Making this integration for Azure first gives Microsoft some advantages.

“All of the major cloud services support vSAN today,” Kogan said. “All support NetApp, which is a file storage option. This is the first of the three to have a non-vSAN, non-file option for storage.” He noted that Pure had been able to provide this before, but through a guest iSCSCI connection, which was much inferior to this.

“It was a little clunky,” he said. “This, on the other hand, is jointly engineered and fully supported by both parties.”

Kogan said that Pure has a major advantage over these options in that their capabilities are considerably less expensive than the competition.

“The problem for storage heavy environments is that you also have to scale compute as well as storage,” he indicated. “We are 40-50% cheaper, depending on the Microsoft pricing option, The vSAN model can’t decouple storage and Compute. NetApp does let you do that, but it is very expensive. AWS is actually more competitive for them.”

The integration leverages Azure’s latest storage solution, Premium SSD v2 disk, which Kogan said will helps mutual customers achieve up to one-third of the infrastructure cost compared to Pure’s previous platform.

“The Premium SSD v2 disks have the same latency as Ultra Azure disks, but at half the price,” Kogan said. “We have an advantage in being software on top of that cloud infrastructure. We are also able to make good use of our compression and deduplication technology. We have really good dedupe.”

Organizations can now migrate their applications to the cloud without any capability trade-offs, with the ability to scale storage and compute independently based on need.

“Marrying the Microsoft Azure service – and our Pure Block Store, which we have had for two years, doesn’t change the Go-to-Market for either one,” Kogan said. “Customers still have an option for Bring Your Own License or to purchase Pure Evergreen. But Azure has people just selling this now. By marrying out our technology to a specific Microsoft solution, that really focuses the Go-to-Market in that area.”