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Ctera teams with HPE to put cloud gateways in Simplivity HCI

X Series appliances marry HPE’s hyper-converged hardware with Ctera’s hybrid cloud file server gateway to provide edge compute with storage tiered to the cloud

Hybrid cloud file system appliance provider Ctera has augmented its range with the hyper-converged X Series, which sees its cloud gateway software married to HPE Simplivity hyper-converged hardware.

The product is aimed at larger edge and remote office deployments where a good chunk of compute power is required in addition to be able to tier data off to public cloud storage or private cloud datacentre.

The X Series comes in 2U format hardware with a two-node basic configuration. Ctera’s edge file server software runs as a virtual machine on HPE Simplivity hardware.

It is all-flash storage locally, with the ability to tier data by policy to public cloud services or any S3-compatible storage after a given time period, but leaving behind a stub to provide local access.

The Ctera side of things provides the edge-cloud filer, with cloud deduplication and cloud disaster recovery capabilities. The hyper-converged hardware appliance element provides compute power with all-flash storage up to 40TB per node, local data deduplication synchronous replication and high availability mirroring. Failover can also be to the cloud for synced files.

The X Series – which appears based on HPE Simplivity 380 hardware – comes in two models, the XC1800 that holds up to nine 1.92TB flash drives to give 18TB of raw capacity, and the XC2400 that holds up to 12 drives for 23TB capacity. Both are recommended by Ctera for use cases of up to 5,000 users.

The marrying of Ctera’s hybrid cloud file server/gateway product with hyper-converged hardware seems a logical development, and one that mirrors similar moves elsewhere, such as Cohesity and Rubrik’s leveraging of HCI for backup.

So, would Ctera consider making other products in its range hyper-converged?

Liran Eshel, CEO of Ctera, said: “We don’t think every situation needs HCI. Some sites don’t have tier one apps and everything can be in the cloud with no need for VMs on site. X Series will be good for the edge compute and storage needs of sites.

“But you can mix and match with other Ctera appliances and run the [virtual appliance] V Series on Nutanix and other HCI hardware, all managed from the same console.”

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