DDN BLOG

Today, DDN is proud to announce WOS 360 v2.0 – a major update to the market’s first true and truly complete object storage platform. WOS 2.0 continues to deliver on the promise of object storage and enables companies to build a highly reliable, infinitely scalable and most efficient storage pool for all their unstructured data needs.
But “promise” is a vague term, so we have defined six key requirements that true object storage platforms need to meet in order to be truly complete: Scalability, security, accessibility, efficiency, reliability and performance. Each of the requirements also has a series of underlying “dimensions.” The requirements and dimensions can affect each other. For example, performance will always impact efficiency— but organizations should always be able to tune their architecture to meet their key requirements, without having to compromise on others.

wos_logoScalability: WOS can be scaled in three dimensions: the total volume of storage, the number of objects and the number of sites. While applications may not have high scalability requirements for all three dimensions initially, those requirements can change due to external elements so it’s important to build in all three scalability dimensions from the start. Object storage platforms need to scale granularly but efficiently and provide full flexibility with respect to data protection and performance so they can be used for any mix of large and small objects and be tuned for high IOPS, high throughput or both.

Accessibility: The age of object storage is also the age of interface change. In the past, unstructured data was primarily stored on network attached storage and accessed via file protocols. However, that model is rapidly changing, driven by the introduction of new cloud-centric architectures and the migration of high performance computing into the enterprise. WOS addresses this with support for legacy NAS protocols and emerging cloud storage protocols like S3 and Swift, as well as integration with high performance parallel file systems including GPFS and Lustre, so it is important that object storage systems support both legacy and emerging access protocols with a broad suite of connectivity options that are adaptable and future-proof.

Efficiency: It is almost impossible to find an object storage platform that does not promise to be the most cost efficient solution on the market. What is more difficult is to find the platform that offers the overall best efficiency, including storage utilization, management cost and bandwidth consumption. An efficient object storage platform will not be based on an underlying Linux Ext3/4 file system that wastes 15-20% of capacity and suffers performance degradation at scale. The latter is especially ignored by the distributed erasure coding solutions that rely heavily on the WAN and generate a lot of bandwidth traffic for data rebuilds.

Security: Data security has become a paramount concern in the always-on and connected world of IT. WOS addresses this issue by providing end-to-end security with data protection. This extends from the client application layer with connection authentication to a hardened management layer. The management layer prevents unauthorized access to system utilities and SSL encrypted LAN/WAN traffic between WOS nodes to secure the storage network that protects and keeps data-in-flight private.

Reliability: Whether you are building a low-cost archive or a high-performance storage cloud, reliability is key. But if reliability doesn’t deliver on all three dimensions: availability, durability and integrity, you can’t call it true reliability. Most platforms provide acceptable reliability grades on 1, sometimes 2 of the above – only WOS offers the ability to build in 100% reliability, covering all three dimensions with options for localized erasure code, replicated erasure code, hierarchical erasure code and object replication. No matter which data protection options are utilized, WOS assures data integrity with a continuous data integrity check that runs in the background, and systematically verifies all objects and metadata against the 64-bit CRC that was calculated and stored when the data was originally written. If the data and the CRC do not match the process, it automatically repairs corrupted objects to restore the integrity of the data and maintain the required level of data protection.

Performance: This requirement is measured in throughput, IOPS and latency, and object storage platforms must be able to deliver performance in all three dimensions. Object storage throughput is typically measured in MB/s or GB/s – for large WOS environments, total application throughput requirements can reach hundreds of GB/s. Most object storage platforms are not optimized for small objects, so IOPs tends to be neglected in performance conversations – but this is not the case with WOS. Similarly, most object storage platforms do not allow for latency optimization and do not mention latency in performance conversations, but we are comfortable saying that WOS reduces disk and network latency almost absolutely.

WOS 360 was designed as one single storage solution for all your unstructured data needs. We have carefully analyzed the common storage requirements and built a platform with unprecedented tuning options, enabling customers to give priority to the parameters that are most important for their data or to their customers, in all dimensions.

If you’re interested in learning more about our next generation of WOS, please join us for a webinar on July 16. Joined by analyst and industry expert Simon Robinson of the 451 Group, we will discuss the current state of object storage and just how we’ve built WOS to become the market’s only true object storage platform designed to help companies tune their systems to meet the six key requirements of scalability, security, availability, reliability, efficiency and performance.

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