We’re excited to announce that Purity//FA 6.4.7 is now generally available! This release of Purity//FA adds performance, usability, and other improvements for FlashArray™ customers. Purity//FA 6.4.7 also adds support for the FlashArray//XR4 and FlashArray//C R4 arrays just announced at Pure//Accelerate® 2023. Let’s take a look at the highlights so you can get to upgrading!

Added Support for New R4 Hardware Platforms

Purity//FA 6.4.7 adds support for the latest generation of hardware for the FlashArray R4 platform. This new hardware release of FlashArray achieves up to 40% more performance in 51% less rack space with its next-gen R4 controller and world’s largest DirectFlash® Modules (DFMs)—up to 75TB on a single DFM! Some more highlights of the new FlashArray//X R4 and FlashArray//C R4 are the inclusion of fourth-gen Intel Xeon™ processors, PCIe Gen 4.0, DDR5 DRAM, DirectCompress Accelerator, line rate speeds of 64Gb FC and 100GbE, and NVMe-oF for TCP, FC, and RoCE. You can find out more by visiting the technical announcement blog post.

Premium SSD and E-Series VM for Azure Cloud Block Store

Pure Cloud Block Store™ is simply a virtual machine (VM) with Purity//FA as its operating system and dedicated resources like vCPU, RAM, and SSD storage that is running in a cloud provider such as Microsoft Azure. Pure Cloud Block Store enables customers to take advantage of the great features of the FlashArray platform but within their preferred public cloud. With Purity//FA 6.4.7, Pure Cloud Block Store gets even better with the introduction of support for Premium SSD v2 in Azure. This support offers up to a 30% increase in IOPS and throughput over Microsoft’s legacy offering. This means that Pure Cloud Block Store can now be used to host business-critical applications such as databases. This new version is also 2-3x more cost-efficient to run than our previous version while thin provisioning and data reduction further drops the spend on storage (average data reduction still hovers around 5 to 1), compounding the cost benefit.

In addition, we now use an Azure ESV4-series VM as the new foundation for Pure Cloud Block Store deployments, which means third-generation Intel Xeon Platinum 8370C (Ice Lake) or the Intel Xeon Platinum 8272CL (Cascade Lake) can be leveraged and are ideal for memory-intensive enterprise applications.

The result of both of these enhancements is that Pure Cloud Block Store on Azure will operate with disk latencies around 1.2 milliseconds, meaning that Pure Cloud Block Store can be used to host business-critical applications such as databases. With Purity//FA 6.4.7, your hybrid cloud gets faster and more robust! To learn more, take a look at the technical blog posts which will go over Evergreen storage and reducing your cloud storage bill.

GUI Support for FA Files Local Users

FlashArray is a unified platform that offers both block and file access to the underlying all-flash storage. Local users can be desirable in some cases when managing file exports. For example, local users may offer tighter security and an opportunity to separate access to a VMware vSphere datastore without having it tied to Active Directory. If Active Directory was compromised, access to the datastore could also be granted to an attacker. Administrators may want to use local users as a way to separate access and mitigate that risk by using different authentication sources.

Starting with Purity//FA 6.4.7, FlashArray File Systems can leverage local users for directory exports and shares. This capability provides administrators the flexibility to control RBAC without the dependency on Active Directory. And, local users are managed right from within Purity//FA’s simple, web-based management console.