Organizations are struggling to deal with the problems of storing, protecting and sharing ever-increasing amounts of unstructured data. There are two primary causes of this struggle. First, too much of their primary data storage is consumed by “cold data” that should be stored on less expensive storage. A second cause is the growing amount of “hot” data which requires high performance access.
Interestingly, the growing amount of critical data doesn’t just consist of new data being created by users, applications, Internet of Things (IoT) sensors, high resolution video cameras and devices, etc. The processes that analyze IoT data also frequently includes or compares that data to older “cold” data the organization decided to retain.
Effectively Addressing the Data Avalanche
Most organizations realize object storage and a scale-out architecture are a very effective means to deal with these challenges and simplify their storage ecosystem. However, the challenge is much if not most of an organization’s data is on file and block devices like NAS and SAN storage systems that use protocols, which are different from object storage systems. Organizations need a comprehensive cost effective solution that can bridge the gap between NAS and SAN systems to private cloud and public cloud, object storage systems. It must also handle massive amounts of data while providing intelligent automation that can handle auto tiering of data, archiving functions and making data life cycle management more efficient.
The StorNext Solution
Such a solution is available from Quantum, which has an excellent time proven scale-out tiered storage portfolio designed to meet the needs of organizations that must deal with massive amounts of data such as those found in Media & Entertainment, Surveillance & Security, high performance computing, research and unstructured data archiving environments. Their solution consists of Quantum’s high performance StorNext parallel scale-out file system combined with any of several different highly tuned and optimized StorNext scale-out appliances designed for specific storage and workflow requirements to insure maximum performance, reliability and flexibility.
StorNext Scale-out Appliances
The scale-out hardware part of the solution consists of the Xcellis Scale-out NAS, the Artico Archive Gateway, the Lattus Object Storage appliance, and the StorNext AEL (Tape) appliance. These appliances are available in various configurations to meet an organization’s high performance primary storage, extended online storage and tape archive storage requirements. StorNext is engineered for modern storage and server architectures and topologies where businesses require high performance shared access to large, data-intensive workloads.
StorNext Software Provides Advanced Data Management Capabilities
StorNext is a high performance scale-out parallel file system that uses a Metadata Controller Server/Client architecture. The StorNext Metadata Controller Server is deployed in failover, highly redundant pairs and manages the shared storage and access to the files on that storage for connected clients which can be on a wide array of client operating systems, including OS X, Windows and many Linux operating systems. StorNext is optimized for collaborative 4K workflow streams and has the ability to pull public cloud stores into the StorNext global namespace.
StorNext also provides advance features such as:
- Tunable performance at the drive, array and volume levels. Some examples are cache, i-node, LUN and block size settings.
- Highly optimized metadata performance
- Flexible platform and connectivity support for SAN, NAS, InfiniBand, Block over IP on the Linux, Windows and macOS platforms.
- Performance + RAID 6 protection which is faster than RAID 5 implementations and more reliable.
- Excellent performance scaling linearity. You can scale-up or scale-out.
- Storage Manager: Integrated HSM tiering in a single global namespace to object, tape and cloud archival to protect and retain high-value content.
StorNext 6 Enhancements
In addition to its key components that support 4K-Ready storage, StorNext has added new features that provide very high performance and advanced data management capabilities. These new features are specifically designed to improve collaboration, increase data protection and simplify management of very large, data intensive workloads. Among the new features are:
- Core file system metadata database improvements
- Multi-site file replication and sharing with:
— FlexSync provides synchronized point-in-time file copy from file system to file system with fast, efficient peer-to-peer synchronization. Metadata DB enhancements allow for sync without walking source or target file systems. With versioning, only incremental updates are synced rather than the entire file.
— FlexSpace enables automated or user initiated distributed, collaborative workflows. It uses S3-based object storage repositories with built in support for Lattus and FlexTier for public clouds and 3rd party object storage.
- Enhanced StorNext-client functionality with:
— Quality of Service (QoS) provides bandwidth throttling, bandwidth reservation and Web service API support. Also provides support for SAN and DLC clients, Linux and Windows.
— Client offline archive retrieval
- LTO-8 support
- Advanced data management with:
— File copy expiration and selectable retrieve order
— File system auditing which provides activity trail of “what, when and who” made successful changes to file metadata and contents of file itself
— Online stripe group management
- Flexible configuration with:
— Powerful scheduler allows for granular automated synchronization
— Synchronized a single source to multiple targets
- Lightweight intuitive GUI with:
— “Set and forget” ease of configuration
— Efficient single button recovery
— Can also script commands via CLI
StorNext6 new features extend the StorNext environment enabling efficient collaboration on a global scale. Its data management enhancements reduce complexity while optimizing performance and capacity. Tightly integrated with Amazon AWS, StorNext6 facilitates and automates decisions on moving data to S3 or Glacier, and whether or not Amazon handles the data movements between them.
Combined with its ability to auto tier data from on-site storage to the cloud or anywhere in between, this is a compelling solution for organizations that need to handle massive amounts of large data files.