What good is more storage if files just keep piling up?

Qumulo, a Seattle, Wash. data storage startup, emerged from stealth today to debut a new network-attached storage (NAS) software that leverages big data analytics to provide organizations with insights on how their most valuable data is being stored and where. Dubbed Qumulo Core, the software can help enterprises get a handle on their growing data stores and capitalize from them, said Brett Goodwin, Qumulo’s vice president of marketing.

“Qumulo Core builds real-time data analytics directly into storage, giving enterprises an unprecedented view of their data and storage resources at massive scale,” Goodwin told InfoStor. “With greater visibility into which data is most valuable, where it is stored, what users or applications are accessing what files, and why data grows, Qumulo’s customers achieve significant gains in workflow performance and storage efficiency.”

The software, available on appliances from Qumulo or approved storage servers, leverages the company’s own Qumulo Scalable File System (QSFS), which runs on commodity hardware and is compatible with solid-state drives (SSDs) and traditional hard drives. A fast “flash-first hybrid design” aside, QSFS is designed to handle both large and small files; provide brisk transactional and sequential performance; and generate quick reads and writes, according to the company.

Key to Qumulo Core is how it provides visibility into an organization’s storage environment.

Qumulo Core, which takes a subscription approach to licensing, runs atop Linux. Real-time analytics are built-in, enabling storage administrators and IT managers to view and manage capacity, as well as determine which users and applications are accessing a given set of files. These insights can also help businesses optimize capacity or determine which files are backed up, archived or outright deleted.

And it can perform all this at scale, managing billions and trillions of files, in fact.

Qumulo counts among its founders some veterans from Isilon Systems, a scale-out NAS provider that was acquired by EMC in 2010, including Mary Godwin, vice president of operations. To date, the company has raised $67 million, including a Series B round last month worth $40 million.

Qumulo CEO and co-founder Peter Godman revealed that some early customers, including the University of Washington and Sinclair Oil, are putting the tech through its paces.

“Enterprise data storage vendors have worked hard to make ‘buy more storage” the answer to every problem, but that doesn’t help businesses manage data,” he said. “Qumulo has spent the last three years working hand in hand with customers to build the first data-aware scale-out NAS solution for the enterprise, enabling organizations to manage, store and curate an enormous number of digital assets with a simple, efficient and cost-effective new storage solution.”

Qumulo Core software and the company’s Q0626 hybrid storage appliances, each with 24 TB of hard drive and 1.6 TB of SSD capacity in a 1 U form factor, are available now. Pricing for a four-node Q0626 starts at $50,000.