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San Francisco-based storage software firm Scality today announced what the company heralds as the industry's first object storage platform with native NFS (network file system) support, bringing the benefits of cloud-based storage -- primarily scalability, hence the company's name -- to applications and systems that rely on popular file protocols to fetch and store data.
In addition to NFS v.3, the product, called RING 4.2, supports CIFS with Samba 3.5, AppleTalk Filing Protocol (Netatalk 3.x) and open source or commercial flavors of FTP, as part of the Scality's Open Cloud Access initiative, which CEO Jérôme Lecat envisions will render the alphabet soup of file protocols and transfer technologies a non-issue in the cloud storage era. RING casts a wide net, supporting "REST/HTTP protocols such as Amazon's S3 API, CDMI, NFS, CIFS, AFP and FTP as well as FUSE," informed Lecat.
The company made waves last year when it announced that it had raised $22 million from big tech VCs to help further the company's RING storage software platform. RING, which runs on commodity x86 hardware, provides a self-balancing distributed object storage foundation, with auto-scaling and auto-tiering.
Today, Scality is bringing file-based workloads along for the ride.
RING 4.2 makes it possible to directly store and access files without involving the REST API or relying on gateways that provide interoperability, boasts the company. To illustrate RING's flexibility and Big Data-friendliness, Lecat stated that "data written through the REST API or file interface can be read through any of the other interfaces, and can be analyzed in place using Hadoop framework." OpenStack clouds can be brought into the loop via Cinder, he added.
"Release 4.2 offers customers the broadest range of native information access available from any object storage provider," concluded Lecat. It can breathe new life into aging data centers, too, said Philippe Nicolas, director of Product Strategy for Scality in a statement. "It enables traditional datacenters to benefit from object storage right now, while having a path towards a software defined datacenter architecture."
The update includes new data protection capabilities dubbed GeoSync, which provides both synchronous and asynchronous, and block-level and file-level replication services across IT facilities and data centers, enabling files to "enjoy the same level of data protection as object-based data," asserts the company.
With RING 4.2, no business application gets left behind in the cloud storage revolution. GeoSync "brings the cost and data protection efficiency of object storage to traditional applications which cannot be easily transformed to handle a REST API," said Nicolas.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Small Business Computing. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.