Cloud based storage is very hot in the market right now. The highly scalable and elastic nature of the cloud storage makes it very attractive for businesses of all sizes and shapes. However, there are certain issues crucial to the large scale adoption of cloud based storage. They are
- Latency Issues
- Lower cost
- Better integration with applications
Though there are many cloud storage vendors who tackle the issue of latency and cost head on, there are not many who offer cloud storage that integrate seamlessly with the existing applications. StorSimple, a Silicon Valley based startup with funding from Redpoint Ventures and Index Ventures, claim that they offer solutions that integrate well with the existing high growth datacenter applications.
Organizations are faced with scalability issues with their existing storage solutions and they are hesitant to switch over to cloud based storage solutions because of the issues associated with bandwidth limitations. StorSimple tries to solve this problem with their hybrid cloud strategy. With StorSimple, one can deploy their Armada Storage appliance inside the datacenter which will address all the storage related issues while also taking advantage of public and private cloud storage services as and when it is needed. They do this without disrupting your workflow and this is very important for business continuity.
The StorSimple Armada storage appliance makes cloud storage appear like a local datacenter storage and integrates well with the existing storage and data management tools. Their appliance intelligently identifies the bottleneck areas and stores the data on a tier of integrated high-performance Solid State Drives (SSD), thereby, allowing us to use low cost SATA storage and/or cloud storage as primary storage for the data needs. Their technology uses weighted storage layout which transparently examines all data, breaking it into smaller segments, and stores the data segments on the appropriate tier of storage according to its frequency of use, age, relationship with other segments, and priority. This approach takes care of any latency issues that are usually associated with the cloud storage providers. Coupled with their deduplication of primary storage data, this solution solves the latency issues and offers a storage solution at a lower cost.
The most interesting part for me is the way their storage solution integrates with the existing enterprise applications. I would term this their killer feature. For example, with StorSimple’s technology, organizations can use their storage solutions with Microsoft’s Sharepoint which uses SQL databases. They can leverage the StorSimple solution for storing database files along with a software agent for externalizing BLOBs that takes advantage of Microsoft-supplied frameworks. Usually, when organizations decide to leverage cloud based storage solutions, they will be forced to rewrite their applications because most of the storage providers give access to their storage using http or some REST based APIs. Traditional applications are not capable of accessing the storage using REST based API and it will require a rewrite of the applications or deployment of some sort of a connector. StorSimple takes care of this headache and the cloud based storage integrates seamlessly with existing applications like Sharepoint, Exchange, Fileviewers, virtual machines, etc..
Yesterday, StorSimple announced the hiring of the industry veteran Bill Cordero as vice president of worldwide channels and strategic sales. With this move, they are getting serious about channel partners as a means to reach more customers. They have an interesting technology and have made some good moves. We will have to wait and see how they shape up in the market.