Open-E aims Jupiter DSS software defined storage at enterprise SAN

Open-E adds ZFS functions and scalability to take its DSS storage to the enterprise at a claimed 25% of the cost of storage array products

Germany-based storage virtualisation software provider Open-E has launched a new product aimed at the enterprise storage market.

Open-E Jupiter DSS – branded “software-defined storage” by the company – uses the ZFS file system and operating environment to add increased, and theoretically unlimited, scalability to Open-E’s existing Linux-based storage software platform.

CEO, Krzysztof Franek, said iSCSI SAN systems built with Open-E could be available at 25% of the cost of comparable systems from major storage suppliers.

Open-E Jupiter DSS can be deployed on any standard server and, with commodity drives to create iSCSI SANs of virtually unlimited capacity and volume size, said Franek.

“We are urging partners to certify hardware with us because you need good CPU, memory and drives, but in general Open-E will work on anything,” he said.

Franek said Open-E planned to snapshots and replication in “the next release”.

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Open-E also plans to add Fibre Channel connectivity and NAS capability to Jupiter DSS, but Franek would not say when. “The market will tell us when it wants these things. The list of potential features is very long, but we only have 40 engineers, and resources are limited, so we will add things one by one.”

Jupiter DSS adds ZFS functionality to Open-E’s existing DSS product, which is based on Linux. DSS is aimed at the SME market and has limited functionality, especially in terms of scale – eg, numbers of snapshots, volume size etc – compared to the new ZFS-powered Jupiter.

The open-source ZFS was designed by Sun Microsystems. It is a fully featured storage file system and operating system with synchronous and asynchronous replication, high availability, snapshots, cloning, thin provisioning and data deduplication.

“DSS is aimed at the SME market,” said Franek. “We were coming up against NetApp, EMC etc on price but were missing functionality. The big brands are very expensive and many are not able to pay the price,” he added.

The storage market is dominated by suppliers that sell hardware bundled with their own controller software and operating systems (OS). Software-only products aim to break that link by offering storage software that can be deployed on commodity servers with standard disk drives, cutting costs in the process.

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