Cleversafe updates software, licensing for cloud providers

By Kevin Komiega

-- In an effort to entice cloud storage service providers, Cleversafe today released a new version of its software and altered its pricing model to give customers more options for deploying and managing cloud storage as part of their overall service offerings.

Version 2.1 of Cleversafe's software includes API integration between the company's Dispersed Storage systems and existing service provider applications, including billing systems, CRM solutions, and management consoles. Cleversafe also now supports Active Directory authentication.

Part of Cleversafe's new strategy is to offer more licensing options. The company has been selling its Dispersed Storage Network (dsNet) technology as a series of bundled hardware and software nodes for more than two years. Now that potential customers are looking at storage purchases with a more discerning eye, Cleversafe is decoupling its hardware and offering software-only versions of its products.

Julie Bellanca, Cleversafe's director of marketing, says the shift in the go-to-market model reflects buying trends. "We are now offering software licensing on certified hardware because it's sometimes hard for customers to understand the value of our hardware versus our software when the technology is bundled," says Bellanca.

Starting price with support for 64TB of raw capacity is $43,400 for software licenses only, and $73,000 for bundled hardware and software. Pricing includes a Manager appliance, two Accesser routers, and eight Slicestor storage nodes.

Cleversafe's Dispersed Storage technology divides data into slices, and then disperses them to multiple storage nodes, typically across three or four data centers. Each individual slice is unrecognizable as data, but can be recreated once a pre-defined number of slices are reconstituted.

Chris Gladwin, Cleversafe's founder and CEO, predicts the cloud storage services market will grow slowly in the near term, but that will change once the market is established and large service providers such as Verizon and AT&T jump in with both feet.

"When these guys enter the market we're going to see the next level of scale. There are some monsters lurking out there and they can wait until the market reaches $3 billion or $4 billion before they enter," says Gladwin.

Related articles:
Cleversafe beefs up dsNet hardware for cloud deployments
Cleversafe addresses cloud security concerns
Cleversafe upgrades dispersed storage appliances, software



This article was originally published on June 29, 2010