It’s one thing to build a scalable filesystem. It’s quite another to build a scalable company. Gluster founder and CTO AB Periasamy has the challenge of trying to do both.

In an interview with, Periasamy explained where he sees both Gluster, the company, and Gluster, the filesystem headed in the future. Gluster is an open source distributed filesystem that is well-positioned for the current evolution of cloud computing and big data requirements.

The next big release for GlusterFS is version 3.3 which is currently in beta. Among the new features in GlusterFS 3.3 is support for Hadoop which is an attempt to expand Gluster usage for Big Data.

Overall the use case for Gluster in Periasamy’s view, is to solve storage problems that people have been grappling with for years. Perisamy said that companies are asking for a Google-style storage approach where a scale-out filesystem is needed that can run on commodity hardware.

In the open source space, Periasamy sees Ceph as the only other technology that is attempting to do the same thing. The Ceph filesystem is a distributed filesystem that is intended to be massively scalable. The system was initially created by Sage Weil, who is also the co-founder of hosting provider Dreamhost.

“Even if Ceph is competition, I think it makes sense for us to all play together since the market is so big,” Periasamy said. “It takes all of us to stand together to take on the big boys.”

In terms of challenges, at this point in the development of Gluster, Periasamy noted that he thinks most of the technical challenges have been overcome.

“It’s now for us about execution and scaling the company,” Periasamy said. “We have overcome the storage startup curse and we are here to stay.”

Periasamy added that the challenge is about taking a technology that works and has proven itself in the market and in the community and building a big company like a NetApp or EMC.

“Our challenge is how can we keep up the pace and build a great company around this product,” Periasamy said.

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