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Cloud Expo: Article

Yottabyte & the Software-Defined Data Center

It says the widgetry lets it create cloud-based data centers that incorporate storage, compute and network

Yottabyte, a two-year-old Michigan start-up with awfully big shoes to fill given its very big name, claims to have what every boy wants these days, a cloud operating system.

It says the widgetry lets it create cloud-based data centers that incorporate storage, compute and network using a public, private or hybrid cloud model, a claim that sounds vaguely familiar.

It fancies that unlike competitive point solutions, it may be the first provider to really embrace the scope of what it calls the data center challenge. It figures customers want compute, network and storage in a single solution; they want to virtualize machines and applications; and they want to deploy hybrid clouds.

It says that's a tall order, historically requiring multi-vendor solutions and typically resulting in tough compromises in performance or scalability.

It reckons it's has changed the rules of the game.

Wednesday it announced its flagship Yottabyte Enterprise for Community Edition underpinned by Yottabyte FS2.0 for rapidly provisioning new functionality, leveraging commodity hardware and scaling according to usage requirements or IT budgets.

The widgetry uses Debian and KVM.

It's supposed to deliver enterprise-class application performance and continuous data availability regardless of the availability of a corporate WAN connection.

The data centers it creates are supposed to be network-agnostic and software-defined, the chi-chi new buzzword.

The widgetry is supposed to make integrating critical network functionality a routine matter of defining each network component, application or resource through a unified web-based user interface.

That includes deduplication; scheduled backup and snapshots; restore multiple, deduplicated instances of data to any point in time from any location on a private cloud or via the Internet; automatically store every change in data in multiple off-site locations for quick restoration; establish data encryption methodology for file transfer using AES or FIPS 140-2; scale network, compute or storage resources at will; synchronize data at the block level with Yottabyte ySync; simplify advanced data searches across the network with Yottabyte ySearch; and create, manage and distribute virtual machines, managing set-up, bandwidth allocations, interconnectivity, load balancing and related parameters.

The widgetry can also handle managed file transfer; content delivery; and WAN acceleration.

Available as a free download, Yottabyte Community Edition allows single-point, web-based administration - including provisioning, management and security - across the entire network.

The download doesn't include technical support, but it can be had on a per-incident basis.

Yottabyte claims to be unique in addressing the significant management challenges of building and maintaining enterprise-class data centers. While competitive offerings let organizations define the architecture for a virtual data center more quickly, it says most fail to incorporate storage.

Its Community Edition is supposed to integrate storage with networking and compute operations and give customers control over deploying and provisioning data center systems in the cloud model best suited to their needs.

It lets companies map their data center architecture in a software construct, separating the control plane from physical resources. For example, they can build a physical SAN out of commodity hardware or provision a virtual SAN (vSAN) or virtual NAS (vNAS) on existing hardware through a web-based UI, reportedly avoiding complex proprietary hardware set-ups and jigging the time to "go live."

Integrating storage with network and computing resources only requires software definitions for addressing, interconnections, assigned bandwidth and related factors.

Yottabyte CTO Greg Campbell says, "Building and deploying a data center has become orders of magnitude more complex, given the challenges of virtualization, the need for ever higher performance and the costs of functional integration. Complicating matters, customers won't wait for the traditional ‘integrated solution.' They'll instead merge technologies to create a patchwork multi-vendor network if they have to at the risk of high costs and significant management challenges. Yottabyte had a better idea: give customers the infrastructure to build a virtual data center with greater functionality than they could envision, and let them visualize and create their own public, private or hybrid cloud in which to deploy it. We think this is the shape of things to come in the data center."

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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