In 2016, Pure Storage introduced Pure1®, a cloud-based centralized monitoring and reporting system for installed systems. Coupled with RemoteAssist and the addition of Pure1 Meta®, Pure1 has evolved into a comprehensive tool for:
- Monitoring system health and performance
- Optimizing storage and planning for future needs (with AI assistance)
- Performing upgrades and resolving issues (with assistance from Pure Storage Support)
As customers deploy larger “fleets” of increasingly capable systems, however, users clearly require the ability to manage their systems more comprehensively and with greater autonomy. They should be able to manage entire groups of systems and install routine upgrades, optimizations, and optional features without needing assistance from Pure Storage Support. To solidify our strategy for managing and monitoring the infrastructure, we’re redefining the cloud communication channel with the introduction of the Pure1 Edge Service.
What is Pure 1 Edge Service?
The Pure1 Edge Service (PES) paves the way for advanced storage management by providing secure communications between management applications in the Pure1 cloud and companion agents on installed systems. The service also manages agent installations and upgrades. With PES, applications that both increase customer autonomy and simplify the management of Pure Storage® systems become possible.
Pure has led the industry in minimizing the operational impact of storage system software upgrades. Customers can schedule upgrades with Pure Storage Support engineers, who utilize the secure RemoteAssist channel to perform them. Using PES, the Self-Service Upgrade facility further streamlines the process by enabling customers to upgrade their systems without assistance from Pure Storage Support.
Pure Fusion (Coming Soon)
As customers deploy more and more FlashArray™ systems, the need to consolidate and automate storage management becomes acute. The initial Pure Fusion™ release consolidates administration for entire availability zones (AZs) of FlashArray devices and presents a cloud-like self-service and elasticity paradigm to consumers. Using PES to send commands to arrays, Pure Fusion replaces array-by-array management with a cloud-based provider-consumer model that simplifies storage management for both IT departments and storage users.
Automated Issue Mitigation (The Purity Optimization Agent)
Occasionally, issues that could affect large numbers of customer systems arise. They’re usually related to common hardware components (e.g., NVRAM) or external environments. In these situations, Pure develops corrective actions, identifies systems that might be affected, alerts their owners, and obtains approval to download and install corrections under customer control. Using PES, the Purity Optimization Agent puts customers in control of corrective actions by eliminating the need for Pure Storage Support to oversee installation. Once a customer has approved an action, downloading, verification, and installation is automatic.
Let’s talk about Pure1 Edge Service architecture. Historically, systems have logged information to the Pure1 cloud, but Pure1 hasn’t issued commands, downloaded content, or solicited information from them. But cloud-based user-driven active management needs the secure bidirectional communication that PES provides.
Figure 1 below illustrates the overall PES structure. It consists of messaging and configuration services in the Pure1 cloud and a gateway in supported Purity operating environments.
Figure1: PES Architecture
The messaging service underpins current and future cloud-based storage management applications called control planes. Control planes interact with installed systems on which PES has been enabled and companion agent software is installed. PES support in edge devices includes:
The Pure Edge Gateway (PEG)
PEG is the endpoint of a secure communication channel between control planes in the Pure1 cloud and agents on edge devices. It’s a lightweight container running on the controller acting as a virtual endpoint.
Agents are control plane-specific modules downloaded from the cloud when requested by Pure1 users. By downloading and installing agents, users opt in to advanced features such as Self-Service. Users can download the agent from the Pure1 Edge Service dashboard, which is shown below:
Figure2: Pure1 Edge Service Dashboard
Once it has been downloaded and installed, each agent runs as a container and responds to messages from its companion control plane in the cloud.
We feel this is just the start of our journey toward a true cloud-based management system. Stay tuned!