Why software defined storage has failed to take off, according to Kaminario | Apple Mac Training UK

Why software defined storage has failed to take off, according to Kaminario

Computing‘s latest research into data centre infrastructure and cloud paints a gloomy picture for proponents of software defined storage, which has largely failed to excite the market in the way predicted. Adopters of software defined storage remain in the low single figures, a situation that has not changed in the three years we’ve been monitoring it.

cloud-and-infrastructure-software-definedThe reason for this is simple says Mick Bradley, vice president EMEA of all-flash enterprise storage vendor Kaminario: hardware vendors are keeping too much proprietary IP to themselves.

“A lot of software defined storage is a piece of software that you’re trying to sit on top of any Intel-based server, and use that as a virtualisation layer for your storage,” he explained in response to a question from the audience at Computing‘s Cloud & Infrastructure Summit.

“My personal opinion as to why that hasn’t taken off is that it requires all of the storage vendors to play, to be open and allow you to drive their storage. A lot of storage vendors want you to use their own features that are array-based because they want to charge you money for it.”

Kaminario sees the future of storage as being all-flash. The price of flash has come down so dramatically, thanks to the R&D efforts by the likes of Samsung, that data centre solid state arrays featuring commodity SSDs are now cheaper than spinning disks and hybrid arrays, Bradley argued. They offer a smaller physical footprint and energy and performance advantages too.

“What we’ve done is that there’s one licence for everything,” Bradley said. “If there’s a feature it’s included in the licence with full transparency of costs.”

He continued: “Software defined storage from the independent software tier is never going to really take off because you rely too much on trying to drive the medium underneath. You can’t do that if you try to be all things to all people.

“What we’ve done is provide a software tier that means we can change our servers and our underlying SSDs from brand A to brand B and it’s just a matter of getting your ops team to roll it out.”

“We’re using off-the-shelf components right now to drive down the costs and we leverage the features of flash.”

Hardware – Computing