Storage software specialist Atlantis Computing has launched Atlantis Hyperscale, a follow-on to its Atlantis USX software-defined storage product aimed at the mid market.
Atlantis Hyperscale will be delivered by partners and configured on customer-chosen x86 server hardware from an approved list. By contrast Atlantis USX is a software-only product aimed at enterprises.
The product comes as either the CX12 or CX24, both of which are dual Intel processor-equipped four-node appliances with 12TB and 24TB of storage capacity respectively. Connectivity is via Fibre Channel and iSCSI block storage and NFS file access. Disk capacity is intended to be all-flash, said Atlantis vice-president Dave Cumberworth.
Customers have a choice of HP, Cisco, Lenovo or SuperMicro servers and hypervisor compatibility with VMware or Citrix products.
Cumberworth described Atlantis Hyperscale as a mid-range customer play, in the market where Nutanix and VMware’s EVO:Rail are also aimed. He said there is “a big appetite, a huge amount of interest from mid-market customers” in the part of the market.
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USX pools different storage media
“Enterprises have platforms and bills of materials that they like to stick to and it’s hard to influence those, so the software-only product works for that market,” he said.
“But in the mid-market there is more of a requirement for a single point of support across software and hardware and a fixed reference architecture.”
Last year Atlantis – which claims around 900 customers and 40PB of storage deployed – launched USX, a virtual appliance that pools different types of storage media to create “application-defined storage volumes from almost any type of media, such as SAN, NAS and DAS, server-side PCIe flash and also server memory".
The Atlantis launch reflects two increasingly prominent trends in storage – software-defined storage and the tendency towards hyperscale computing with its converged server/storage hardware bundles.
software-defined storage offers customers an operating system and controller intelligence as a software product they can deploy on commodity x86 servers.
Web giants turn tide of proprietary hardware
This rising trend runs counter to the decades-long dominance of hardware storage products, in which storage suppliers locked storage functionality to proprietary hardware platforms and charged a premium.
The hyperscale trend, meanwhile, was pioneered by web companies such as Facebook, Google and Amazon. They eschewed proprietary storage platforms and instead ran huge clusters of servers with DAS. Typically, the server was not built with redundant components and, in the event of failure, its workload is failed over to another server and the faulty device replaced.
Recently, suppliers have begun to offer hardware converged products, with prominent examples being those from Nutanix and Simplivity, and software-only hyperscale and converged offerings such as VMware’s EVO: Rail.