EMC purchase of Graphite Systems was a wetware buy

Storage behemoth needed Graphite's people to put lead in DSSD's pencil

Surfers
EMC says Graphite Systems was surfing the same tech wave as DSSD

EMC’s purchase of Graphite Systems was a wetware acquisition, a simple acquihire, according to sources close to the matter.

EMC didn’t want the hardware or the software: it wanted the wetware – the people – because what they were developing was so similar to DSSD’s own technology of an ultra-fast, solid state storage array working as a shared resource in accessing servers’ memory address spaces.

There was a match with DSSD’s development roadmap as well, and DSSD had a hiring plan so the acquisition worked on these levels.

We learnt a little more about Graphite’s technology. Our understanding is that it was developing a hyperconverged server/flash array system with low latency and high throughput using some proprietary FPGA hardware components and its own software.

It would handle IO and IOPS-intensive multi-threaded application workloads with 20TB-150TB data sets, needing 10-15 million IOPS and more than 60GB/sec of sustained bandwidth.

These applications have working sets of data that exceed RAM-caching limits, but need RAM or near-RAM access performance, and without suffering working set division through it being spread across a cluster of scale-out servers.

We also learnt that NEA provided Graphite’s $1.5m funding round. How much is it likely EMC paid for Graphite? A 5x VC payout would imply somewhere around $7.5m. ®




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