Getting On The Cloud: 12 Cloud Storage Gateways

Bringing The Cloud To The Customer: Cloud Storage Gateways

While businesses increasingly see the benefit of storing data in the cloud, few want to move all their data to an off-site provider. Instead, businesses are more likely to keep part of their data on-premise, whether for security or compliance reasons or by habit. Cloud storage gateways are a relatively painless way to bring cloud storage to customers. These are hardware appliances or virtual machines that use standard networking protocols to bring application data seamlessly to a third-party cloud, letting backups, recovery, or other tasks get done as if the data is on-site.

Here are a dozen cloud storage gateways ready to help move customers to the cloud.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Storage Gateway

The AWS Storage Gateway service provides a seamless and secure connection of on-premise software appliances with AWS' cloud-based storage. It supports industry-standard storage protocols, and maintains frequently accessed data on-premise while storing all data encrypted in Amazon S3 or Amazon Glacier. The AWS Storage Gateway supports three configurations, including a gateway-cached volume with primary data in Amazon S3 and hot data in local storage; a gateway-stored volume combining local primary storage with asynchronous backups to Amazon S3, and a gateway virtual tape library that uses the standard iSCSI interface to back data up to virtual tapes backed by Amazon S3 or Amazon Glacier.

Avere Systems Hybrid Cloud NAS

The Avere Hybrid Cloud NAS solution from Avere Systems supports a wide range of applications in the cloud, including transactional processing, HPC, file sharing and collaboration, disaster recovery, and data backup and archiving. Data writes are stored on two nodes to maintain availability. The solution also scales to multiple nodes to increase performance. It features a global namespace to let customers choose between more CIFS, NFS or cloud capacity as needed, as well as Avere's FlashMove software for nondisruptive data migration.

BridgeStor Cloud Storage File System

BridgeStor this month released its new Coronado NAS Gateway, a virtual or HP hardware-based storage appliance providing a secure NAS environment that integrates data center storage with the cloud. Coronado was designed around BridgeStor's CSFS (Cloud Storage File System), the first Posix file system designed for REST-based storage to let businesses store data to private or public clouds or Object-based storage using standard storage protocols including SMB, NFS and iSCSI. Coronado provides Active Cirectory support, local disk cache, deduplication, compression, and AES-256-XTS encryption for data in-flight and data at-rest in the cloud. Its Synchronization Server includes a global file system with global file locking and global deduplication.

Ctera Cloud Storage Gateways

Ctera's cloud storage gateways are hybrid appliances that integrate local storage access with cloud-based backup and file services. The appliances include on-premise storage for speed and local sharing, but take advantage of cloud storage for off-site backup, universal access, and file and folder sync and share. Businesses can use Ctera'’s cloud storage gateways to centrally manage from one device to tens of thousands of devices from a single console, and can replace legacy files servers and tape backup to help reduce data center costs.

Maginatics Cloud Storage Platform

The Maginatics Cloud Storage Platform is a software-defined storage solution backed by object storage that presents a standard file system to end users. That allows movement of data between endpoint devices including PCs, servers, mobile devices, and so on to object storage clusters without the need to rewrite applications or modify data. This virtual filer combines a global namespace, data consistency, edge and mobile connectivity, WAN optimization, end-to-end security, application compatibility and more into a single integrated software-only cloud storage platform, letting businesses use the public, private, or hybrid object store of their choice.

Microsoft StorSimple Arrays

Microsoft's StorSimple family of hybrid storage arrays, which stemmed from that company's 2012 acquisition of StorSimple, combines on-premise tiered hard drive and SSD capacity with the Microsoft Azure cloud to provide primary storage, archive, and disaster recovery. They support Windows, Hyper-V, VMware and Linux servers over iSCSI connections, AES-256 encryption, automated off-site data protection, and data retention policies. The flagship StorSimple 8000 series hybrid storage arrays also support Microsoft Azure StorSimple Manager that consolidates all operating parameters and status updates for all appliances in a data center. It also supports the Microsoft Azure StorSimple Virtual Appliance.

Nasuni Service

The Nasuni Service uses Amazon S3 or Microsoft Azure to maintain a master copy of all data stored in the service. Nasuni Filer virtual machines and hardware appliances act as access points to the service, with all files encrypted using customer keys. The most frequently used files are cached locally, with any changes to the data propagated back to the Nasuni Service and throughout the system. The Nasuni Service includes global file locking, centralized management, automatic data protection, instant recovery, and unlimited snapshots. Rather than purchasing the hardware, customers pay on a per-TB basis and, if need, lease the hardware.

Quantum Q-Cloud Protect Service

The Quantum Q-Cloud Protect service works with the company's DXi cloud gateways including the DXi6900 (pictured) to form a hybrid approach to cloud-based data protection. The DXi Cloud gateway, either physical or virtual, provides a full local copy of data residing on a DXi-Series dedupe appliance for fast local access with data on the Q-Cloud for disaster recovery. As an alternative, customers can also use Quantum's free DXi Accent plug-in to send changed blocks of data to the Q-Cloud for a monthly capacity fee.

Riverbed SteelStore For AWS

SteelStore from Riverbed takes advantage of the company's high-performance networking technology to accelerate cloud data access and protection by reducing data volumes and speeding data transport times with compression, de-duplication, network acceleration and encryption features. SteelStore for Amazon Web Services lets customers put on-premise workloads in the cloud and protect cloud-based workloads between multiple clouds to help improve cloud-to-cloud resiliency for data access, backup and recovery.

SoftNAS Cloud

The SoftNAS Cloud can be configured for use as a cloud storage gateway for accessing up to 16 PB of Amazon S3 cloud capacity from Windows shares (CIFS/SMB), NFS and iSCSI. SoftNAS Cloud runs on most popular platforms, including VMware, Windows Server and Hyper-V. The company said a new version of SoftNAS Cloud/Enterprise unveiled in August bolstered the solution's performance improvement by nearly 300 percent, and included upgrades for ease of use and data protection.

SwiftStack FileSystem Gateway

The SwiftStack FileSystem Gateway combines the scale, durability, availability and economy of object storage with the ability to integrate with existing file-based applications. It supports CIFS/NFS, and installs on any standard Linux distribution. Data comes in as files and objects come out, and vice versa. Customers can mix and match workflows between file and object data without impacting performance. The SwiftStack FileSystem Gateway does not lead to vendor lock-in, the company said.

TwinStrata CloudArray From EMC

From TwinStrata, which this year was acquired by EMC, comes the TwinStrata CloudArray which combines local SAN and NAS data with on-demand cloud storage for an integrated storage, off-site backup, and disaster recovery solution. CloudArray is presented as both an iSCSI and a NAS (CIFS / NFS) device. Its local storage cache allows a partial or complete copy of data to be stored on-premise while replicating it to the cloud. Customers can either get a cloud service bundled with the CloudArray, or can integrate their choice of cloud storage service. Data is encrypted in flight and at rest using 256-bit AES encryption.