Lower Enterprise Storage Costs: Open Source

Two data storage vendors are out with new products that they tout as offering significant cost savings over more traditional storage systems.
Posted December 7, 2009

Paul Shread

Two data storage vendors have released new products that they claim can save users a bundle over more traditional storage systems.

Nexenta and ParaScale both use open source software and commodity hardware to lower storage costs for enterprises.

Nexenta uses Sun's (NASDAQ: JAVA) ZFS file system and x86 servers to create enterprise-class storage, while ParaScale uses Linux and commodity hardware to create a "private cloud" of tier 2 file storage.

Nexenta: ZFS Will Survive

Along with NexentaStor 2.2, the latest version of Nexenta's unified NAS and SAN solution based on ZFS, the company has also introduced a new software suite, Pomona, that automates provisioning and management of multiple NexentaStor and other storage systems.

NexentaStor 2.2 also includes additional support for both VMware (NYSE: VMW) and Citrix (NASDAQ: CTXS), and the solution supports CIFS, NFS, iSCSI and Fibre Channel protocols.

The latest version also includes stronger database integration with Oracle and MySQL. Data deduplication is also planned soon, thanks to Sun's addition of the data reduction technology to ZFS, and pNFS support is also in the works.

Nexenta claims it can save users 70 to 80 percent over proprietary solutions. The company boasts 13,000 free users and 727 paid users to date.

Enterprise Strategy Group analyst Terri McClure said in a statement that "Efforts like Nexenta's are propelling storage into the 21st century, much like Red Hat and Linux did for the server industry."

Nexenta CEO Evan Powell said the company was founded by the creators of the Open-iSCSI.org project, which is now part of the Linux kernel. They latched onto OpenSolaris as soon as it became available to start Nexenta.org, and from there they moved into selling their software and services to enterprises.

Powell said he isn't worried about the fate of ZFS if the Sun-Oracle (NASDAQ: ORCL) merger ever gets cleared by the European Union.

“Gigantic storage users are using ZFS. It's the best file system on the planet and it's open source. The code and the community will continue even if something happens counter to expectations.”

— Evan Powell

"Gigantic storage users are using ZFS," Powell said. "It's the best file system on the planet and it's open source. The code and the community will continue even if something happens counter to expectations."

A free trial of NexentaStor is available at www.nexenta.com/freetrial.

Read the rest at Enterprise Storage Forum.

Tags: Linux, Enterprise, VMware, NAS, Storage

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