Storage vendors, analysts and press are gathered this week at the Next Generation Object Storage Summit (NGOSS) to discuss the past, present and future of Object Storage. The mere existence of this conference and the topics that are likely to be discussed demonstrates that there is still a big need to educate the market about object storage.

DDN is the only technology provider that built a 100% NoFS Object Storage platform, featuring a choice of data protection schemes and the most complete set of API’s. DDN Web Object Scaler (WOS) is by far the most scalable object storage platform and the only one that can compete with public offerings like S3 and even Amazon.

Our brand new paper “A Beginner’s guide to Object Storage” covers all the basics of Object Storage: why do you need it? How does it work? What are the benefits? How can you use it? Here is a short abstract, a link to the full paper can be found at the bottom of the article:

Object Storage is a new storage paradigm that is seeing fast growing interest as it addresses the challenge of efficiently storing massive volumes of unstructured data, Big Unstructured Data. This document is a guideline on the why, what and how of object storage.

Why should companies use Object Storage for unstructured data and how is it different from NAS or SAN? The biggest problem with those systems is scalability: NAS does not really scale as a single system, at least not when talking about petabyte-size environments. SANs are already pretty complex when deployed with a file system layer on top. Scaling-out makes the problem a lot worse.

Object Storage is essentially just a different way of storing, organizing and accessing data on disks. An Object Storage platform is a storage infrastructure to store … objects, which are essentially files with lots of metadata added to them. The backend architecture of an object storage platform is designed in such a way that all the storage nodes are presented as one single pool; there is no file system hierarchy. The architecture of the platform, and new data protection schemes (vs. RAID, the de-facto data protection scheme for SAN and NAS) allow this pool to scale virtually unlimited while keeping the system simple to manage.

Users access object storage through applications that will typically use a REST API, an internet protocol, optimized for online applications. This makes object storage ideal for all online, Cloud, environments. When objects are stored, an identifier is created to locate the object in the pool. Applications can very quickly retrieve the right data for the users through the object identifier or by querying the metadata – information about objects like the name, when it was created, by who etc. This is a lot faster than trying to locate a file through a file system.

DDN WOS is a true object storage platform, designed to scale beyond petabytes as one single system and optimize overall TCO without compromising performance or durability. This makes WOS a perfect platform for a variety of storage cloud solutions, including online collaboration, active archives, cloud backup and worldwide data distribution.

You can download the full paper here.

Object Storage represents the future of Big Data, and at DDN we are focused on delivering solutions that allow businesses, research organizations and government agencies to leverage this new technology to its full potential.

Watch this space; we’re going to have a lot more to say about object storage in the near future!

  • DDN Storage
  • DDN Storage
  • Date: June 19, 2013