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WekaIO brings hybrid cloud NAS software-defined storage

Startup offers virtual NAS, storage software deployed on commodity servers or in the cloud to give single storage pool of file access the can scale to trillions

Startup WekaIO has emerged from stealth with NAS software-defined storage that provides file access storage that can scale to trillions of files without the performance hits that affect some competitors.

WekaIO is deployed by virtual machine or container on x86 servers and takes aim at users with lots of very small files, particularly in analytics use cases including, for example, finance sector and machine learning, as well as large file scenarios such as movie rendering.

WekaIO can be deployed in-house on server drives – flash-only – and/or in the Amazon cloud, with Microsoft Azure and possibly Google Cloud on the way. It can run 100% on Amazon or as a hybrid between the cloud and the customer’s datacentre.

The company makes the claim that it renders traditional external shared storage obsolete by being deployed on commodity servers as a virtualised pool of storage accessible by any app in the cluster as well as in the cloud, or both.

It also positions itself as a file access cloud storage option that sidesteps the limitations of existing Amazon storage services.

The file system scales to 6 trillion files in a single directory and is fully Posix-compliant. It is described by marketing WekaIO vice-president Barbara Murphy as, “like Lustre or GPFS. It’s built as an enterprise product with extremely high performance.”

One of its design features aims to avoid slowing down as file system sizes increase by distributing metadata, said Murphy.

“In terms of the file system, one of the problems is is that you can end up with metadata services separated from data and that can become a choke point in, for example, Lustre and GPFS, especially with small files,” she said. “WekaIO metadata is totally distributed to avoid hotspots.”

WekaIO is the fruit of Israeli former-XIV executives. The company’s first major release was earlier this year, with full production availability on 15 July 2017.

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