Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, Zakia Bouachraoui

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Java IoT, Microservices Expo, Microsoft Cloud, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing

@CloudExpo: Blog Feed Post

Cloud Storage Gateways & Cloud Integrated Storage: Sorting the Terminology

And a deeper look at the problems cloud storage can solve

Every emerging market goes through a time of confusion where both vendors and analysts try to “define” the solution to a pervasive problem. Meanwhile, companies actually experiencing the problem are left to sort through a cacophony of mixed messages and terminology, all the while struggling to understand how this “category” of products solves their problem.  As cloud storage moves closer to the IT mainstream, we see this same story arc playing out, with analysts and vendors coining a new category of products – “Cloud Integrated Storage” (CiS) – that is subtly different from the “cloud storage gateway” term that previously captured the entire category.

According to an ESG report, CiS entails “primary and/or most active data staying onsite (as a tier or cache).” It operates “for less active data … as an easily scalable archive” and offers “powerful remote data protection and business continuity capabilities.” While this description is quite elaborate, in layman’s terms, CiS simply delivers cloud storage in addition to traditional storage to on-premise environments. In fact, it may all sound very familiar to those already using advanced cloud storage gateways and appliances.

This debate about terminology obfuscates the bigger question: What should an IT department looking to incorporate cloud into their storage strategy be looking for? Rather than dwelling on the terminology, which can sometimes be helpful and other times confusing, let’s look at three types of problems businesses are trying to solve using cloud storage. Each scenario calls for a slightly different solution deployment:

  • Growing storage capacity with minimal local footprint. Capacity is growing for many businesses at a rate of 20-60% per year expanding the need for data center floor space –a situation that does not scale well to data center constraints. Alternatively, a constant cycle of migrating and replacing storage capacity with new higher-density storage presents it’s own set of risks, downtime and administrative burden. Companies need to address growth requirements without data center expansion and without increasing administration and business risk. How? By connecting to a large, virtually unlimited, cloud store, while using a small amount of local capacity for caching. This caching/acceleration of storage in the cloud is one of the fundamental premises behind cloud storage gateways.

  • Replicating storage capacity to cloud for disaster recovery. Many organizations that require an off-premise disaster recovery strategy find today’s data replication solutions (usually consisting of secondary sites and dedicated infrastructure) unattainable. Replicating data to the cloud solves the problem of building out and maintaining remote infrastructure, and replaces it with on-demand cloud resources. Creating a capacity pool in the cloud that replicates and/or snapshots local storage capacity can serve as that disaster recovery plan. Moreover, it gives applications instant access to data in the cloud. Unlike the first scenario, a full-featured storage device with local capacity is required.

  • Tiering excess capacity to cloud. For businesses continuing to store significant amounts of data locally but also in need of an “overflow valve” for their growing archive data where the data remains online for compliance purposes, cloud storage is a very compelling way to handle the overflow. Unlike the prior scenarios, this one involves some data that may reside only locally and/or some data that may reside only in the cloud. Keep in mind that having the data only in one place (i.e. local only) does not guarantee data protection.

An ideal cloud storage solution addresses all three scenarios, whether it is labeled a CiS solution or an advanced gateway. Truth is, advanced cloud gateways, such as CloudArray, are also CiS solutions – the terminology is a question of preference, not of capability. That means that aside from working with all the scenarios above, they offer plug-and-play connectivity, at-rest security, always-on backup, built-in offsite data protection, cloud snapshots that are immediately accessible and instant DR from anywhere.

Discover today how flexible cloud storage can be and how it can help simplify your data storage IT environment.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Nicos Vekiarides

Nicos Vekiarides is the Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder of TwinStrata. He has spent over 20 years in enterprise data storage, both as a business manager and as an entrepreneur and founder in startup companies.

Prior to TwinStrata, he served as VP of Product Strategy and Technology at Incipient, Inc., where he helped deliver the industry's first storage virtualization solution embedded in a switch. Prior to Incipient, he was General Manager of the storage virtualization business at Hewlett-Packard. Vekiarides came to HP with the acquisition of StorageApps where he was the founding VP of Engineering. At StorageApps, he built a team that brought to market the industry's first storage virtualization appliance. Prior to StorageApps, he spent a number of years in the data storage industry working at Sun Microsystems and Encore Computer. At Encore, he architected and delivered Encore Computer's SP data replication products that were a key factor in the acquisition of Encore's storage division by Sun Microsystems.

CloudEXPO Stories
Apps and devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. Learn how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again) whenever an Internet connection is available. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Ben Perlmutter, a Sales Engineer with IBM Cloudant, demonstrated techniques for replicating cloud databases with devices in order to build offline-first mobile or Internet of Things (IoT) apps that can provide a better, faster user experience, both offline and online. The focus of this talk was on IBM Cloudant, Apache CouchDB, and related open source tools and open standards.
In this presentation, you will learn first hand what works and what doesn't while architecting and deploying OpenStack. Some of the topics will include:- best practices for creating repeatable deployments of OpenStack- multi-site considerations- how to customize OpenStack to integrate with your existing systems and security best practices.
"Peak 10 is a national cloud data center solutions managed services provider, and part of that is disaster recovery. We see a growing trend in the industry where companies are coming to us looking for assistance in their DR strategy," stated Andrew Cole, Director of Solutions Engineering at Peak 10, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
The now mainstream platform changes stemming from the first Internet boom brought many changes but didn’t really change the basic relationship between servers and the applications running on them. In fact, that was sort of the point. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Gordon Haff, senior cloud strategy marketing and evangelism manager at Red Hat, will discuss how today’s workloads require a new model and a new platform for development and execution. The platform must handle a wide range of recent developments, including containers and Docker, distributed resource management, and DevOps tool chains and processes. The resulting infrastructure and management framework must be optimized for distributed and scalable applications, take advantage of innovation stemming from a wide variety of open source projects, span hybrid environments, and be adaptable to equally fundamental changes happen...
Charles Araujo is an industry analyst, internationally recognized authority on the Digital Enterprise and author of The Quantum Age of IT: Why Everything You Know About IT is About to Change. As Principal Analyst with Intellyx, he writes, speaks and advises organizations on how to navigate through this time of disruption. He is also the founder of The Institute for Digital Transformation and a sought after keynote speaker. He has been a regular contributor to both InformationWeek and CIO Insight and has been quoted or published in Time, CIO, Computerworld, USA Today and Forbes.