Market Overview

Western Digital Unveils the Future of Data Infrastructure


New Open Standards, Architecture and Products Enable Software
Composable Infrastructure for High-Scale Data Centers

Digital Corp
. (NASDAQ:WDC) today unveiled a comprehensive set of
open standards, architecture and products to address the ever-increasing
demands of high-scale private and public cloud data centers. In addition
to introducing new OpenFlex™ architecture and product line, the company
announced its plans to deliver an application programming interface
(API) and key product specifications to the open community to create a
complete foundation for open, software composable infrastructure (SCI).
By delivering solutions that enable the independent scaling of compute,
storage and network resources that can be quickly orchestrated, SCI
enables new levels of scalability, efficiency, agility and performance.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

By enabling flexible scaling and purposeful provisioning of disaggregated storage, compute and netwo ...

By enabling flexible scaling and purposeful provisioning of disaggregated storage, compute and network resources, the new OpenFlex software composable infrastructure reduces TCO by up to 40 percent compared to current hyper-converged infrastructures (Graphic: Business Wire)

The elements of today's announcement include:

  • The Kingfish™ open API for orchestrating and managing SCI
  • Open product mechanical specifications to enable vendor neutral
  • OpenFlex architecture and initial partner ecosystem
  • OpenFlex product line of flash and disk NVMe™-over-Fabric (NVMf)

The exponential growth in data is not only fueling new Big Data and Fast
Data applications, it is also creating complexities in the way that data
is being captured, preserved, accessed and transformed. With large data
sets being shared across diverse applications throughout an extended
lifecycle, the dynamic nature of these more demanding, high-scale
workloads is exceeding the limits of traditional data infrastructure.

Built on industry standard NVMf technology, Western Digital's OpenFlex
architecture creates independently scalable pools of flash and disk that
can be connected to computing resources via common networking
technologies, such as Ethernet. The Kingfish API enables the flash and
disk pools to be presented as software composable infrastructure that
can be quickly and easily orchestrated into logical application servers.
When compared to hyperconverged infrastructure (HCIs), which has fixed
ratios of compute, storage and networking, the OpenFlex architecture and
products can reduce total cost of ownership by up to 40 percent1
by eliminating underutilized resources. The fine-grain scalability of
OpenFlex can also reduce initial infrastructure investment by nearly 50
percent2. Additionally, with the disaggregated resources
being directly connected, application performance can be more
predictable since the logical servers are less susceptible to "noisy
neighbor" workloads that compete for the same resources or data paths.

"Data centers need a more efficient approach to satisfying the needs of
complex and dynamic applications and data workflows," said Phil
Bullinger, senior vice president and general manager of Data Center
Systems at Western Digital. "To ensure flexibility, data center
operators also need open solutions that enable them to select from
best-in-class, vendor neutral options. Western Digital's OpenFlex
architecture and products, and our commitment to the open community help
satisfy these needs, while delivering significant improvements in cost
and agility. We're building on our proven leadership in disk, flash and
NVMe storage products to deliver the future of data infrastructure."

According to a recent survey by IDC of mid-sized and large-enterprise IT
users3, less than half of their available compute and storage
capacity is being utilized. In response to dynamic workload demands, 70
percent of users reported inefficiencies in the time it takes them to
provision compute and storage resources.

"To keep up with rapidly changing application workloads, data center
managers must try to build flexible infrastructures with inflexible
building blocks. Storage and compute are often added to increase
performance and capacity, yet end up hugely underutilized, resulting in
a lot of unnecessary cost," said Ashish Nadkarni, Group VP,
Infrastructure Systems, Platforms and Technologies, IDC. "Western
Digital's OpenFlex architecture provides flexible composability that
maximizes resource utilization in a highly scalable and flexible way, as
well as eliminates the problems of ‘stranded storage'. In addition, its
openness eliminates the ‘locked in' barrier faced by proprietary
infrastructures and paves the way for broader ecosystem engagement."

Western Digital's introduction of the Kingfish API and providing of
product specifications to the community to enable vendor neutral and
plug-compatible solutions, further demonstrates the company's commitment
to open architectures
. At the time of this announcement, the
OpenFlex architecture leverages a broad ecosystem of data center
hardware and software offerings that includes: Apache Hadoop®, Apache
Spark™, Apache Kafka®, Apache Cassandra®, Apache Mesos®, Broadcom,
Ceph™, DriveScale, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), Inspur, Kaminario,
Kubernetes®, Marvell®, Mellanox Technologies, Microsoft SQL Server®,
Percona, and Super Micro Computer.

OpenFlex Fabric Products Deliver Highly Scalable Performance and

Western Digital's family
of OpenFlex fabric-attached products
will be offered in a variety of
performance levels and capacities to enable data center architects and
IT managers to purpose-build a scalable and flexible data center for
their unique needs. Highlights include:

  • OpenFlex™ F3000 Series Fabric Device: For
    performance intensive Fast Data applications. Available in capacities
    up to 61TB4, it delivers low-latency NVMe flash performance
    over two 50Gb5 Ethernet ports.
  • OpenFlex ™ E3000 Series Fabric Enclosure:
    A 3U enclosure that houses up to ten hot swappable F3000 fabric
  • OpenFlex™ D3000 Series Fabric Device: For
    capacity intensive Big Data applications. The 1U device offers up to
    168TB of hard disk capacity over two 25Gb Ethernet ports.

The OpenFlex F3000 fabric device and OpenFlex E3000 enclosure will be
available in the fourth quarter of calendar 2018. The OpenFlex D3000
fabric device will be available in 2019.

Additional Information and Resources

During Flash Memory Summit, Western Digital will showcase the OpenFlex
architecture and products at a feature keynote presentation and in the
exhibit hall (Booth #207) where the product will be running a wide range
of data center applications.

Further details and materials on today's announcement can be found at

About Western Digital

Western Digital creates environments for data to thrive. The company is
driving the innovation needed to help customers capture, preserve,
access and transform an ever-increasing diversity of data. Everywhere
data lives, from advanced data centers to mobile sensors to personal
devices, our industry-leading solutions deliver the possibilities of
data. Western Digital® data-centric solutions are marketed under the
G-Technology™, HGST, SanDisk®, Tegile™, Upthere™, and WD® brands.

© 2018 Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates. All rights
Western Digital, the Western Digital logo, G-Technology,
SanDisk, Tegile, Upthere, WD, Kingfish, and OpenFlex, are registered
trademarks or trademarks of Western Digital Corporation or its
affiliates in the US and/or other countries. Apache Hadoop®, Apache
Spark™, Apache Kafka®, Apache Cassandra®, and Apache Mesos are either
registered trademarks or trademarks of the Apache Software Foundation in
the United States and/or other countries. Ceph is a trademark of Red
Hat, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. Microsoft and SQL Server are
either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in
the United States and/or other countries. The NVMe word mark is a
trademark of NVM Express, Inc. All other marks are the property of their
respective owners. Pictures shown may vary from actual products. Product
specifications subject to change without notice.

1 – Based on internal estimates of utilization efficiencies and
component pricing as of July 2018

2 – Based on internal estimates of utilization efficiencies, expenditure
models, and component pricing as of July 2018

3 – IDC White Paper, sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise,
"Quantifying Data Center Inefficiency: Making a Case for Composable
Infrastructure," March 2017

4 – 1 terabyte (TB) equals one trillion bytes

5 – Gb denotes gigabits

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains certain forward-looking statements, including
statements regarding the capabilities, features, performance and
availability of the company's data technologies, devices, and platforms,
and the company's technology strategy, growth opportunities and
potential partnerships with datacenter hardware and software vendors.
There are a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause these
forward-looking statements to be inaccurate including, among others:
volatility in global economic conditions; business conditions and growth
in the storage ecosystem; impact of competitive products and pricing;
market acceptance and cost of commodity materials and specialized
product components; actions by competitors; unexpected advances in
competing technologies; our development and introduction of products
based on new technologies and expansion into new data storage markets;
risks associated with acquisitions, mergers and joint ventures;
difficulties or delays in manufacturing; and other risks and
uncertainties listed in the company's filings with the Securities and
Exchange Commission, including our most recently filed periodic report
to which your attention is directed. The company undertakes no
obligation to update the information in this release in the event facts
or circumstances change after the date of this release.

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