Nexenta Enables File Services on VMware VSAN

Posted on August 20, 2014 By Pedro Hernandez

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Nexenta today unveiled new software that adds file-based storage services to VMware's Virtual SAN (VSAN).

The company's NexentaConnect for VMware Virtual SAN software extends NFS (NFSv3 and NFSv4) and SMB file services support to virtual machines and desktops hosted on VMware's software-defined shared storage platform. And according to Thomas Cornely, Nexenta's chief product officer, the software accomplishes this feat with little administrative overhead.

NexentaConnect for VMware Virtual SAN offers "complete seamless integration" with the VMware VCenter management console. Additionally, the software enables admins to provision file services within just a few minutes. Cornely described the software as a "very close collaboration" between his company and the virtualization specialist, adding that "VMware approached us."

Other features include inline compression and deduplication, Active Directory and Kerberos support, and IO path handling that boosts VSAN IO performance by up to 10x, according to company estimates. The product is compatible with VMware High Availability (HA) and supports folder- and volume-level snapshots, replication and backups.

The new 3.0 release of NexentaConnect for VMware Horizon increases desktop density per host and provides a user experience that is up to 10 times more responsive courtesy of its latency-slashing optimizations. Blast and GPU acceleration speeds up graphics-intensive apps and a new tool enables organizations to seamlessly import Horizon desktop pools into a NexentaConnect storage setup.

The storage software maker also took the wraps off NexentaStor 4.1, due to arrive in the fourth quarter. Instead of focusing on read speeds for this release, Cornely told InfoStor his company has been busy "optimizing [for] write workloads and latency."

Updates to the company's "commercial-grade SDS implementation" include inline compression, VMware VAAI and vCenter Management plug-ins and new reference architectures that support up to 150 TB of raw flash capacity with SanDisk or HGST solid-state drives (SSDs). A new "all-flash mode" provides high-performance storage services on all-SSD reference architectures.

Finally, the company is targeting Big Data and petabyte-scale cloud storage environments with its new NexentaEdge software.

Cornely called NexentaEdge 1.0 an "an object storage play that also supplies block." The OpenStack-compatible solution is unique in that it is the first of its type to deliver "inline deplication across the entire cluster," he said. The software runs on commodity x86 servers (Ubuntu or Red Hat Linux) and supports multiple protocols, including iSCSI Block, Cinder, Swift and S3 Object APIs.

Nexenta CEO Tarkan Maner argued that "legacy hardware- and new appliance-based systems are not designed to handle" the types of workloads, data types and volumes produced by an "explosion of unstructured data driven by today's trends of social, mobile, the Internet of Things, and Big Data," in a company statement. NexentaEdge provides "enterprises and cloud service providers with a state-of-the-art Software-Defined Solution portfolio delivering ultra-scale, performance and TCO from block and file to object storage on any platform and for any workload or app," he added.

NexentaEdge 1.0 is scheduled to ship in the fourth quarter.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InfoStor. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.


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