Towards a new convergence

December 27th – Data volume continues to grow at a rapid rate and CIOs wish to leverage new architectures and cloud ubiquitous presence to offer multi-point of presence, data redundancy, off-site data protection (DR) and by effect a business continuity behavior for their corporate critical applications.

3 angles can be taken considering the current configuration and technologies deployed:

  • Network File Tiering: The idea continues to be attractive with established players for several years now, historically these systems act as an in-band or out-band file virtualization layer for NAS and File Servers. Recently, this element receives a new path to cloud with S3 API support.
  • Cloud Gateway: This element is more recent with product acting as a translator between an object protocol presented by the back-end storage and the application layer who can consume only file interfaces. The idea is to expose NFS and CIFS from the gateway. This key component can support multiple object storage, on-premise or cloud-based, with interesting features such multi, mirroring, preferred read… and remember what happened recently to Nirvanix.
  • Data Migration: This approach includes data archiving and HSM from disk storage to long-term storage, disk or tape, and also adds a new data path with object protocol.

Globally, these 3 modes converge, creating confusion on the market and especially in users’s mind. The consequence is a real difficulty to select the right approach as differentiators are less visible. Some people name this new category  The New Data Management landscape aka DM 2.0 or just Cloud Integrated Storage.

Philippe Nicolas, Product Strategy (pn@scality.com)

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