OpenStack Summit: 10 Vendors Putting Storage Front And Center

OpenStack From The Storage Point Of View

Building a cloud without storage is like building a house without closets, cupboards, cabinets, or garage space. In each instance, the finished product might elicit oohs and aahs from the outside, but be completely useless once one opens the door.

The use of clouds based on the open-source OpenStack software is growing quickly, as evidenced by the amount of news stemming from the OpenStack Summit in Portland, Ore.

A real highlight of the OpenStack Summit was storage, as vendors unveiled new ways to store and manage data in clouds based on the OpenStack code.

Those who didn't attend the OpenStack Summit, and even some of those who did, may not have had the chance to look at the open-source cloud from the storage point of view, so we gathered up the news for you. Check out all the storage news from the OpenStack Summit.

OpenStack Grizzly At Center Stage At OpenStack Summit

OpenStack Grizzly, the seventh release of the OpenStack code, was the focus of the OpenStack Summit. It featured nearly 230 new scalability and enterprise features, including clustered computing and broad software-defined networking (SDN) support.

On the storage front, OpenStack Grizzly featured OpenStack Object Storage, which allows cloud operators to take advantage of quotas to automatically control the growth of object storage environments while using bulk operations to ease the deployment and management of large clusters.

It also featured the second full release of the OpenStack Block Storage "Cinder" service for managing heterogeneous storage environments from a centralized access point. It includes a new intelligent scheduler to let cloud users allocate storage based on the workload's performance, efficiency or cost-effectiveness.

CloudByte: Integration with OpenStack Block Storage Cinder

CloudByte, a Campbell, Calif.-based developer of software-defined storage technology it claims offers guaranteed quality of service (QoS) to every application from a shared storage platform, used the OpenStack Summit to show how its technology integrates with the OpenStack Block Storage Cinder project.

That integration includes a driver for the Cinder framework that lets service providers provision QoS-aware CloudByte storage volumes right from OpenStack clients and APIs.

As a result, service providers using the OpenStack platform can create, snapshot and manage CloudByte storage volumes using the Cinder API or the OpenStack Horizon client, with each volume individually configurable for capacity and performance.

Cloudscaling Supports OpenStack Grizzly With Its Open Cloud System

Cloudscaling used the OpenStack Summit to unveil its new Open Cloud System (OCS) 2.5 elastic cloud infrastructure technology. The new release, which supports OpenStack Grizzly, targets enterprises, SaaS providers and cloud service providers with enhancements to OCS Block Storage including point-in-time copies of volumes that are stored in OCS Object Storage.

Also new is the ability to use snapshots for OCS Block Storage volume backups, automated installation and deployment of the service, and increased redundancy and interconnects to protect against infrastructure failures.

San Francisco-based Cloudscaling expects Open Cloud System 2.5 to be in general release this summer.

Coraid Demonstrates Software-Defined Storage in OpenStack Environments

Coraid, the Redwood City, Calif.-based developer of the EtherDrive scale-out storage technology based on commodity hardware, demonstrated its EtherDrive storage in OpenStack cloud environments.

Coraid in February had said it contributed drivers for ATA-over-Ethernet (AoE) and its Coraid EtherCloud platform for software-defined storage to the OpenStack Block Storage Cinder project. The drivers were released with the release of OpenStack Grizzly earlier this month. Coraid's AoE driver lets OpenStack-based clouds integrate with Coraid's EtherDrive and EtherCloud platforms for scalable, automated storage services across massively parallel 10 Gigabit Ethernet.

HP Brings Fibre Channel Storage To OpenStack Clouds

Hewlett-Packard used the OpenStack Summit to unveil technology making its HP 3Par StoreServ and its StoreVirtual storage technologies compatible with clouds built on the OpenStack platform.

The OpenStack enhancements to HP storage improves how Fibre Channel works with OpenStack clouds, said Craig Nunes, vice president of marketing for HP storage. "OpenStack has had no way to address Fibre Channel storage. ... [We] provided the software to OpenStack to allow anyone's Fibre Channel storage to connect, and now we've provided an OpenStack Fibre Channel driver for our 3Par and StoreVirtual storage," he said.

While OpenStack originally supported object storage, and about a year ago received support for iSCSI storage, Fibre Channel support was missing, Nunes said. "Large financial institutions and others with high-performance Fibre Channel infrastructures couldn't work with OpenStack clouds," he said.

LSI, Nebula Partner To Accelerate OpenStack Storage

LSI and Mountain View, Calif.-based startup Nebula are partnering to accelerate the sharing and storage of data in OpenStack environments for big data, Web and mobile applications.

LSI is the developer of Nytro flash-based application acceleration products and the LSI Syncro sharable storage solutions to OpenStack cloud environments, while Nebula develops hardware appliances for deploying private clouds using industry-standard servers.

NetApp Proposes File Share Service Capabilities For OpenStack

NetApp said at the OpenStack Summit that it has submitted a prototype and proposal for a file share service capability to the OpenStack Foundation Technical Committee and community. NetApp said it expects its proposal will be on the list of possible features for the next version of OpenStack, called Havana.

NetApp said OpenStack does not natively support file-based storage systems, and so the company proposes adding a file share service that address a range of file system types as an extension to the OpenStack Block Storage Cinder project or as a separate project. NetApp has developed a prototype, including code contributions and APIs, as well as a reference and a back-end implementation specific to the vendor, it said.

Red Hat's Gluster File System Ready For OpenStack

Red Hat said at the OpenStack summit that GlusterFS, its open-source scale-out, distributed file system solution, can be used behind OpenStack storage interfaces with RDO, the new freely available, community-supported distribution of OpenStack that runs on Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Fedora and their derivatives. GlusterFS support for OpenStack enables OpenStack cloud developers and operators to use GlusterFS today to support the native OpenStack storage interfaces Swift, Cinder and Glance, allowing OpenStack application developers and service providers to take advantage of Gluster's scale-out storage software.

SolidFire Shows Block Storage With OpenStack 'Grizzly' Release

SSD array developer SolidFire is working with partners to support the Cinder block storage service with enhancements to its OpenStack Driver including QoS settings via volume types, boot from volumes, and multi-back-end support to help seamlessly add a SolidFire cluster into an existing Cinder environment.

To provide this new functionality, SolidFire has established partnerships with the Rackspace Private Cloud and with Nebula, which develops hardware appliances for deploying private clouds using industry-standard servers. The company said integration with those companies' technologies helps ease the deployment, management and scale of their OpenStack-based Compute and Cinder block storage infrastructures.

Zadara Cloud Block Storage Supports Red Hat OpenStack

Irvine, Calif.-based Zadara, developer of the Zadara Storage Virtual Private Storage Array technology that offers enterprise NAS capabilities as a service at public cloud providers such as Amazon Web Services, Rackspace and Dimension Data, said at the OpenStack Summit that it is now an early adopter participant in the Red Hat OpenStack Cloud Infrastructure Partner Network.

The company said it plans to work with Red Hat to streamline the implementation and use of Zadara Cloud Block Storage with the Red Hat distribution of OpenStack.