Feeds

AWS storage gateway adds local volumes, tiering

Cloud titan kindly offers to reduce burden on in-house arrays

Security for virtualized datacentres

Amazon Web Services' Cloud Storage Gateway has added another feature that will raise eyebrows among storage hardware vendors: tiering.

The cloudy concern recently let it be known that the Gateway, a virtual appliance that shunts data into and out of its simple storage service (S3), can now provision a local volume that servers and applications see as just another source of storage. The Gateway can also make S3 buckets appear as just another volume.

Local volumes aren't the appliance's only new trick, as AWS says the appliance can now also create “a cache of recently written and recently read data stored locally on your on-premises storage hardware.”

The effect of that innovation is to give business a chance to store lots of data in S3 at the low, low, prices on offer in Uncle Jeff's Crazy Bargain Cloud, but keep some data on the premises to reduce user-grumpiness-inducing latency.

Storage vendors have been spruiking a similar vision for a decade or more, starting with information lifecycle management's insistence that not all data deserves to live on fast disk forever, given the cost of such storage.

These days storage shoppers hear more or less the same message described as “tiering”, a technique that talks up the idea of data users clearly want now being offered the chance to cruise in comfort on solid state disks, while last year's emails get a bumpy ride on 7.2k disks that reside inside the same storage array. While users can set rules for which data ends up in which tier, automation is an integral part of the process as it ensures that data reaches the tier demand for it deserves.

AWS has confirmed to The Reg that the caching it has implemented competes with tiering, telling us through a spokesperson that “The process for managing the Gateway-Cached volume is automated and does not require manual action or management. The processes or algorithms to cache the most frequently accessed data is an inherent part of this Gateway-Cached volume feature.”

Amazon's entry to the tiering makes a hot market even more contested. All major array vendors have, of late, tuned their kit to do tiering well and are busy promoting niggardly differences between their efforts in the area. All-flash players like Whiptail, FusionIO and Violin assert separate flashy devices do the job even more efficiently, by simply putting everything into flash, either in an all-flash array or by giving servers a big flash injection to remove the need for data to traverse the network quite so often.

The release of the Gateway will therefore put added pressure on those vendors that charge for tiering, as they face competition from storage rivals who give it away and AWS' &US125/month Gateway. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Docker's app containers are coming to Windows Server, says Microsoft
MS chases app deployment speeds already enjoyed by Linux devs
IBM storage revenues sink: 'We are disappointed,' says CEO
Time to put the storage biz up for sale?
'Hmm, why CAN'T I run a water pipe through that rack of media servers?'
Leaving Las Vegas for Armenia kludging and Dubai dune bashing
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First
But - dammit - It would be insane to say 'don't collect, because NSA'
Symantec backs out of Backup Exec: Plans to can appliance in Jan
Will still provide support to existing customers
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.