Los Angeles – Storage Switzerland and a host of other industry influencers are spending the next day or so at the Next Generation Object Storage Summit (NGOSS). As is usually the case at these events, we opened with the ongoing argument about how the industry should explain what object storage is and why an organization might want to use it. My colleague, Eric Slack, has gone to great lengths to frame this up in his recent Object Storage series.
The net/net for me is that Object Storage is a method of accessing files, an alternative to the traditional file/folder POSIX architecture that users and IT professionals are more familiar with. As an alternative methodology, it has some advantages that the Object Storage vendor can leverage to provide some compelling benefits that can’t be attained with POSIX storage. For example, an Object Storage-based system should be able to:
- Scale significantly greater in terms of file count than a POSIX system
- Be significantly easier to navigate and locate a specific file than a POSIX system
- Provide much better recovery from a drive failure than a POSIX-based system
From an IT Professional’s perspective, the real question is: “Should YOU be using object storage?”. The common misconception is that you need to have billions of files in order to justify an investment in object storage. While certainly data centers managing massive amounts of date are a prime candidate, as we heard in the first end-user presentations at NGOSS, there are indeed other strong use cases. Specifically, Object Storage is a viable option when you need low cost archive or backup storage that’s readily available, or when you simply can’t tolerate the delay or the risk of large data set RAID rebuilds.
For these reasons, Object Storage has a role to play in both the SMB, Enterprise and of course the cloud. Keep coming back to Storage Switzerland throughout the next day or so for more coverage of the Next Generation Object Storage Summit (NGOS).