Nutanix Gets $33M Funding, Brings Hadoop To SAN-Free Storage


Nutanix, a startup developer of technology that combines storage and virtual servers into data center building blocks it says can eliminate traditional networked storage, has closed a new $33 million round of funding and is itself investing in developing storage tied closed to the Hadoop big data technology.

The new round of funding brings total venture funding in Nutanix to $71.5 million and follows the close of a $25-million round of investment in Nutanix from nearly a year ago, said Dheeraj Pandey, co-founder and CEO of the San Jose, Calif.-based company.

Nutanix, which came out of stealth mode last year, develops technology that collapses compute and storage resources so that no SAN is to implement virtualized environments, Pandey said.

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Its converged infrastructure appliances feature high-performance Fusion-io storage technology to allow scaling out from a single 2U appliance with four physical servers built-in to hundreds of nodes, in theory, Pandey said.

"The biggest anyone has done so far is a 52-node cluster," he said. "It fits in two-fifths of a rack because of the high density that comes from deduping the entire infrastructure."

Nutanix also unveiled plans to collaborate VMware's open-source Project Serengeti big data technology to convert Hadoop instances in virtual machines, Pandey said.

Project Serengeti includes a free deployment toolkit for deploying a Hadoop cluster on vSphere.

"Big data" is data that scales to multiple petabytes of capacity and is created or collected, stored, and collaborative in real time. Big data typically consists of unstructured data, which includes text, audio and video files, photographs, and other data that is not easy to handle using traditional database management tools.

Hadoop requires that important enterprise storage management features such as deduplication and high availability be provided by storage solution providers in a scale-out environment, Pandey said.

"Our architecture collapses the compute and storage resources into a single resource which can run Hadoop inside our cluster," he said. "We have implemented all the EMC-class and NetApp-class features so customers will not miss any of them. Every feature you expect from a SAN can be run inside the Nutanix solution."

With VMware Serengeti technology bundled in the Nutanix solution, customers will be able to set up Hadoop to run in a virtual machine within a half-hour, Pandey said.

"We will push VMware in Hadoop environments and ride the wave VMware is creating in Hadoop," he said.

PUBLISHED SEPT. 4, 2012

This story was changed on Sept. 7, 2012, at 4:46 p.m. PST, to clarify the two companies relationship in that Nutanix is not co-marketing or co-selling VMware's Serengeti technology but instead is collaborating with the company.