We’ve published a new white paper that explains how to stop sharding and start scaling vertically with PCI-E flash drives, specifically the Virident tachIOn drive, which offers consistent, low-latency IO performance. I’ve been beating this drum for a while, so it’s a great feeling to have an explicitly recommended reference architecture: buy flash storage first, shard as a last resort. From the summary: The sharding approach that has been advocated for the last five years or so is becoming increasingly questionable advice in some environments. Today’s solid-state PCIe hardware offers extremely high-bandwidth, low-latency I/O performance, exemplified by the Virident tachIOn drive. “Scaling up” is once again a viable and economical strategy for MySQL, and “scaling out” need no longer be the default database architecture.