Simon Ng, Regional Director, South Asia, ProphetStor
Data&StorageAsean: Why are traditional hardware storage vendors seeing revenues decline? Is SDS in part responsible for this?
Simon: SDS aims to disrupt the industry of storage by taking advantage of commodity servers. It is the main reason that legacy storage vendors have been losing their market shares. Most storage systems that you buy from major manufacturers are really storage software running on servers designed specifically to house a lot of hard disk or flash solid state drives (SSD). They have a lot in common with software-defined storage and there is almost nothing that would prevent these vendors from virtualizing their storage software and also being software defined.
With a storage system, you know in advance that everything within that system is designed or at least has been tested to work together. Also, support is greatly simplified -- if one vendor provides most of the storage infrastructure, it is liable for making it all work. For the under-staffed IT department these are welcomed advantages over software-defined storage. For these reasons I think many data centers will continue to invest in turnkey, value-added storage systems, not go the roll-your-own route.
Data&StorageAsean: Does moving to SDS storage mean throwing away existing storage hardware investment?
Simon: SDS promises to reduce storage capital and operational costs by abstracting data services from the storage hardware. To deliver on these promises, SDS typically enables the use of commodity storage which should lower storage acquisition costs. It also provides a common interface to data services regardless of the storage hardware used, lowering operational costs.
Data&StorageAsean: Is SDS already being over taken by cloud storage?
Simon: SDS can be used in both private and public clouds. Some of Prophetstor’s customers even provide the service of cloud storage by leveraging Federator software-defined storage solution, which fully utilize the storage resources of data centers to meet the demands of various customers. In short, SDS and cloud storage are complimentary.
Data&StorageAsean: What are the key drivers that will drive people to implement SDS?
Simon: What end users care about is nothing but data services. Anyhow, legacy storage vendors provide nothing but storage systems. By contrast, SDS enable users to implement more value-added data services such as analytics, data protection, prediction and optimization on top of storage systems.
Data&StorageAsean: What is unique about your own SDS offering?
Simon: In most cases, software-defined storage solutions offered by many vendors are little more than spot-solutions or solutions for existing problems unique to the vendor. ProphetStor Federator Software-Defined Storage, in contrast, supports heterogeneous, multi-vendor storage, making it possible for data center administrators to pool storage resources from different arrays and abstract them into virtual pools that can be provisioned automatically. In addition, ProphetStor Storage Hypervisor, running on commodity x86 hardware, allows IT managers to easily add low-cost storage with enterprise-grade features and performance, helping to keep spending in line with current budgets.
- Support for enterprise arrays and commodity hardware
- Control-path management architecture that abstracts disparate physical resources into well-defined virtual storage pools, classified by capacity, reliability, and performance
- Automated scheduling and monitoring
- Storage service offerings with SLA's
- Horizontal storage service platform accessible though standardized open RESTful API's.
- Storage optimization through dynamic traffic modelling and adaptive resource control