Cloud Storage Trend Inventory: First cloud storage standard release

Source: Internet
Author: User
Keywords Cloud storage cloud storage services providers unified computing platform cloud storage cloud storage services providers unified computing platform
Tags access application application developers applications based business cisco cloud
By the end of 2010, a variety of news events flooded our eyeballs: the guns of the Korean confrontation seemed to reverberate in our ears; the dead of the Shanghai Jiaozhou apartment fire are still remembered by us; the ipad and IPhone4 's sale sparked an unprecedented snapping spree; Internet Special Contribution Award ", Feng also went to the United States ... In the context of this series of Internet hot news events, we will also face the pressure of inflation price rise, and a so-called "thousand years extremely cold" winter ...

One year is only drop in our social life, but for the storage industry, which is extremely active in technological innovation, it is enough to bring about far-reaching changes to the future ... In order to facilitate the broad masses of users to understand the storage area of technology innovation Roadmap and future trends, IT168 launched a "Year-End inventory and New Year's Outlook" series of reports, by reviewing the storage area of the year's key products and events, summarizing this year's hot technology and products, outlining the basic context of storage technology evolution And then describe the future trend of product innovation.

This article will take stock of some of the technical trends shown in the 2010 cloud storage areas, and review and summarize the trends of cloud storage technology, to understand the development direction of cloud storage products in the 2010, and to help users to purchase products that conform to the trend.

Cloud Storage Market detonation

As one of the most important components of cloud computing (Cloud Computing) In recent years, cloud storage (Cloud Storage) undertakes the task of collecting, storing and processing data in service form at the bottom, and on this basis, it expands the cloud platform, cloud service and other business. Cloud storage is divided into public cloud, private cloud and mixed cloud, and public cloud is usually provided by third parties with complete data center facilities. Enterprise users and individuals host data to a third party, and the enterprise can perform on-demand access to the data. In short, it can be understood as an extended, online storage space for you.


In fact, although the concept of cloud storage is proposed in the last two years, its actual application began more than 10 years ago with an internet-based Email system (the concept was first proposed by Hotmail, but now Gmail has become a symbol of this field). The popular services that Web2.0 detonated, from Google Docs docs to Evernote notes, from Facebook to Twitter chatter, are also built on cloud storage mechanisms. It can be said that not every netizen knows the existence of cloud storage, but at least 80% Internet users have already lived in the cloud.

For users, the advantages of cloud storage are mainly:

1, on-demand use, on-demand, do not have to bear the extra cost, effectively reduce costs.

2, no need to add additional hardware facilities or equipped with special personnel responsible for maintenance, reduce management difficulties.

3, the common data replication, backup, server expansion and other work to the third party to carry out, and thus focus on their core business.

4, rapid deployment configuration, at any time to expand the increase or decrease, more flexible and controllable.

With the development of broadband network, cluster technology, grid technology and Distributed File system expansion, CDN content distribution, Peer-to-peer, data compression technology widely used, as well as the improvement of storage virtualization technology, cloud storage technology has tended to mature. In terms of business prospects, "user-created content" and "sharing" as the spirit of the Web2.0 to promote the entire network of users of online services, the pioneers of the courage to eat crabs have also benefited from, and become a sample example. No wonder, cloud storage has become the industry in the eyes of the sweet cakes, new business growth.

In the next 5 years, springboard study of IT marketing consultancy, published in the China Cloud Storage Services report (Cloud Storage), released this August, China's cloud storage services market will grow at a compound annual rate of 103% per cent. Springboard that China's cloud-storage services market will grow rapidly from $6.05 million trillion in 2009 to $210 million in 2014. The report also notes that "while the monthly price of storage services per gigabyte will continue to decline, the overall adoption of the cloud storage market is growing more rapidly, which will drive the overall size of the cloud storage market to rise rapidly over the next 5 years." ”

SNIa Set the first cloud standard

In April 2009, more than 140 companies established the SNIa Cloud storage technology Working group and a Google News group (with more than 280 members). Soon, the team published the first working document, "cloud storage usage scenarios and reference models."

According to the use context and reference Model, the SNIa Cloud storage workgroup proposes a cloud data management interface (CDMI) standard. A 0.8 version of the CDMI specification was subsequently released for public viewing and evaluation at the SNIa storage Developers Conference. Members of the SNIa cloud storage worker include Bycast, Cisco, Hitachi Data Systems, NETAPP, QLogic, Sun, and Xyratex. These enterprises have made outstanding contributions in the process of CDMI draft. The 1.0 version of the specification is currently in the draft state, and the cloud storage standard has been released for public comment.


The CDMI specification is dedicated to helping cloud users, service providers, developers, and IT hardware/software vendors simplify all aspects of cloud storage. More precisely, CDMI defines the functional interface that the application will use to create, search, update, and delete data components in the cloud. The client will be able to discover the functionality of the cloud storage service and use CDMI to manage the wrapper and its data. In addition, metadata can be set on wrappers and their data components through the CDMI interface.

CDMI can also be used in administrative and management applications to manage wrappers, accounts, secure access and monitoring/billing information, and even to other stores accessed by other familiar protocols such as SANS (storage lan), NAS (network-attached storage), FTP, WebDAV, and HTTP /rest. Clients can see the functionality of the underlying storage and data services, so clients can understand this cloud service.

The current version of the CDMI specification is 1.0 and is seeking SNIa approval. The specification has been approved at the Orlando SNW Network Storage World Conference held in April this year. SNIa Cloud Storage Team members are conducting a CDMI reference implementation to drive cloud storage deployments based on this specification.

Four groups are expected to benefit from the CDMI standard:

Cloud storage subscribers: Through standard interfaces, users can better ask and compare security, mobility, security, performance, and other key metrics for different cloud storage services. CDMI provides a simple and generic interface for cloud storage users to help them find the right cloud storage service provider to meet their own proprietary requirements.

Cloud storage Service Providers: the ability to advertise cloud storage services through standard interfaces ensures a wide range of market coverage for service providers. CDMI provides a common interface for cloud storage service providers to promote their unique capabilities and help users discover their services. CDMI helps service providers to advertise service capabilities to the target audience as much as possible. For those who want to face the market on the other hand and want to highlight their own unique function of the service provider, CDMI is also a way to highlight the difference point.

Cloud storage Services Developers: Operating systems such as Windows, Solaris, Linux, and Apple's iphone have demonstrated the value of standard interfaces for application developers. The success of the cloud will also depend on standard interfaces on computing, networking, and storage. CDMI provides the only vendor-and industry-standard development interface for application developers who want to store data in the cloud. CDMI also ensures that application developers can have compatible service providers, creating a potential user market for cloud application developers.

Cloud storage Service Broker: As cloud service users host more and more important data to cloud storage service providers, the need to "spread risk" between users and providers is becoming more and more prominent. The complex cloud storage requirements of large enterprises and government departments may also be beyond the content of a single cloud storage service provider. In this case, the user may need to combine the cloud storage services packaged together. Cloud storage Services brokers can play a role and provide users with "middleman" services. For example, cloud Brokers can provide "cloud insurance" through the CDMI, packaging key cloud storage service providers and standby cloud storage service providers to the broker's customers. If the primary cloud storage service provider encounters a failure or disruption service, the standby cloud storage service provider can replace the primary cloud storage service provider, as required by the SLA. Similarly, brokers can use the CDMI Cloud function Discovery interface to design custom service portfolios. In this custom cloud suite, the services of different cloud service providers are grouped together, and the broker provides it to the customer as a single cloud service.

cloud storage is closely associated with clustered NAS architectures

If cloud storage is a convenient and low-cost storage option for users, these storage challenges can be said to be passed on to the cloud storage service provider. In this case, almost all cloud storage vendors are turning their eyes to cluster NAS.

In general, cluster Nas is a loosely coupled collection of compute nodes. Loosely coupled here, in fact, the basic concept and the concept of software engineering is somewhat similar. In cluster NAS, the smallest unit individual is a file, not a data block, and each node is a separate entity with one or more volumes that cannot be accessed by other nodes. When a user stores data, the data is stored in a file form on a node. For data protection, there may be copies of files on other nodes of the same cluster, but they cannot be made available to users in the form of file instances. In other words, cluster NAS has no special requirements for the interdependence and order of nodes. This is different from the cluster system which is operated by the data block mode.


This kind of working method has high practical value to the large application, especially the continuous file data stream. Through file system scheduling algorithm, it can isolate the whole application into smaller and parallel independent tasks, and allocate file data to each cluster node. At present, it is commonly used in large database query search, intensive computing, life science, energy exploration and animation and other fields.

For cluster NAS, hardware is just one part, and file systems and applications are also valuable components. The cluster NAS offerings we can often see include BlueArc's Titan and Mercury series, HP's Ibrix series, IBM's Sonas, Isilon IQ series, NetApp Ontap GX, and so on.

This year's cluster NAS market swept past the doldrums, looking like a booming scene, mainly thanks to some of the big manufacturers, such as Dell, such as HP, such as IBM.

So why are these manufacturers willing to relate to cluster NAS? We can get some answers from IBM's vision of Sonas. In the communications with IBM systems and technology's Greater China store manager, he first linked Sonas to cloud storage. He believes that in the current storage situation, on the one hand, a large number of unstructured data continues to grow, the requirements for storage systems are increasing; on the other hand, large data access to cloud storage also requires storage systems. In addition, other vendors, including Symantec and Isilon, have also referred to the cloud storage level for cluster NAS applications.

Cluster NAS should be one of the most reliable application options when all kinds of products are related to cloud computing and cloud storage.

Melee Unified Computing Platform

On March 9, NetApp joined Cisco and VMware in a joint press conference on the theme "Virtual all real experience" in Beijing, which launched a secure multi-tenant design architecture for Dynamic Data center-oriented innovative Design architecture ( Securemulti-tenancydesignarchitecture). The architecture is able to isolate the IT resources and applications used by different customers, business units, or departments that share a common IT infrastructure, thereby enhancing the security of the cloud environment.

But the NCE alliance is not the first cloud storage consortium, and last year EMC, Cisco and VMware announced alliances to collaborate on cloud storage. NetApp has always been Sando Mamang with EMC in the storage area, followed by a similar strategic alliance with VMware and Cisco. In terms of the composition of the two alliances, EMC and NetApp are clearly the backbone of their respective alliances and, to some extent, determine the future direction of their respective alliances. NetApp and VMware, Cisco launched the flexpod after the VCE Alliance pioneered the launch of Vblock products. Although NetApp has consistently asserted that flexpod and Vblock are very different, the competition between Flexpod and Vblock is apparent.

In addition to NetApp and EMC offering a unified computing platform product, other storage vendors are not idle. IBM, for example, has also launched its own "workload optimization" scenario, which includes a pre-integrated solution for a particular industry application. IBM considers that the workload of some industry customers is very special, and specially designed systems for these special loads are often the best choice for such customers. These pre integrated systems are packaged, preconfigured, and factory tuned, such as IBM's Intelligent Analytics System, SONAS (Scale out receptacle checkmark Storage) networked storage, etc. Although the names are not the same, they are actually the same as the unified Computing platform launched by EMC and NetApp. In addition, Hitachi Data Systems Inc. and Dell have announced their own unified computing platform.

Comments: Cloud storage is in the most tense and the most lively stage of the horse race. Storage vendors, regardless of size, are proud of hanging on to the signs of cloud storage. Cloud storage has become a fashion in the storage world. Fully rely on independent research and development, to provide a comprehensive cloud storage solution, not only difficult, but also long cycle; acquisitions can speed up the time-to-market of cloud storage, but it is difficult to avoid the internal consumption generated during consolidation. Comparatively speaking, the Tripartite Alliance, like NetApp, Cisco and VMware, is able to assemble the elite in different fields to form a cloud storage solution with a highly complementary product, not only the fast integration of the solution, but also the ability to attack and retreat, which is the simplest and most practical way to realize cloud storage.

Unlike a single storage system vendor, a cloud storage strategy for integrated IT service vendors such as IBM, Hitachi, and Dell, because their product lines tend to cover several aspects of servers, storage, and networking, these vendors rely on their own product lines to fully construct a unified computing platform without resorting to alliances. At the same time, these manufacturers stressed that the introduction of the unified computing platform products more standardized and open advantages.

But all manufacturers emphasize the unified computing platform includes a common: these vendors believe that the unified computing platform in each part is not a simple bundle of hardware products, but a combination of organic integration of a whole system, the unified computing platform must be able to coordinate the workload of the distribution, and resource provisioning and optimization based on workload. That is to say, the core advantage of the final unified computing platform will be embodied in the software.


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