Hitachi Vantara partners with WekaIO on new high performance DFS-Object store solution

The new solution couples distributed file system vendor WekaIO with the Hitachi Content Platform for object storage, but the Content Platform is also getting a refresh in its own right.

Today, Hitachi Vantara is announcing a new OEM partnership with WekaIO which will deliver both high performance distributed file system and management capabilities, as well as object storage for unstructured data. Hitachi Vantara is also announcing an expansion of their Hitachi Content Platform [HCP] cloud object storage software solution.

“Our new OEM partnership with WekaIO is going to allow us to expand out significantly our digital infrastructure portfolio with a new distributed file system and management solution,” said Patricia Harris, VP Digital Infrastructure Marketing at Hitachi Vantara. “This lets our customers reach new speeds for that unstructured data, providing a lot faster decision-making capabilities and giving them much better business insight.

“This is a performance Network Attached Storage solution,” Harris emphasized. ‘This is an NVMe native, parallel file system storage solution.” It is tightly coupled with the Hitachi Content Platform for managing unstructured data.  Those two things couple together very nicely, and that combined solution is very fantastic for AI, machine learning, analytics applications and much more, and works across a multitude of industries.”

“This new OEM partnership with WekaIO marries the best of their leading distributed file system with our leading object storage solution Hitachi Content Platform to deliver performance and affordability,” said Colin Gallagher, VP Digital Infrastructure Portfolio Marketing at Hitachi Vantara.

WekaIO, a 2017 startup, makes a parallel scale-out file storage solution for data-intensive applications with high-performance challenges, both on-prem and in the cloud. Their POSIX-compliant file system leverages a highly-optimized software stack that uses modern architectures to accelerate data to technical computing GPU resources at extreme speeds.

Gallagher described the WekaIO partnership as being unique.

“It is a fully engineered OEM stack, that we are delivering as an end to end solution, and which is going to be Hitachi branded and supported to provide a single throat to choke,” he said. “By tightly integrating it, it allows us to deliver a lower cost solution, as well as to accelerate time to value and improve predictability. This allows us to address a wide variety of new workloads to leverage high performance object and unstructured data storage, from AI, machine learning, life sciences, genomics media and entertainment, manufacturing, financial services, oil and gas and analytics –  anything that generates large amounts of unstructured data.”

Gallagher emphasized that the joint solution provides the best of both object and file storage, without the compromises that have been required in combining them in the last.

“Distributed file systems are good for when data changes rapidly, or when you need quick and rapid access to it,” he said. “That’s the hot data, which churns relatively frequently. But when you do analytics, a lot of the time, the data is warm. It’s not being changed but you want to retrieve it relatively quickly, and it  scales massively. That’s what an object store is good for, the unlimited scale capabilities and the ability to apply metadata to it as well. File systems really have very little metadata capabilities. So by marrying WekaIO with our HCP, you get the best of both worlds. You can keep 20% or less of that rapidly changing file data on WekaIO, and rest on HCP in a tightly coupled solution – all in a single pool of capacity that you can scale independently as needed.” This will also be packaged with Vantara’s DR and business continuity solutions.

The Hitachi Content Platform itself also receives an upgrade, in the second of the two announcements being made today.

“We have also significantly enhanced our HCP,” Gallagher said. “Our second generation all-flash nodes deliver 3.4x faster S3 throughput than they did previously, and at 34% lower cost. This allows you to have a significant object store at a much more affordable price. We have also enhanced the back end storage for these, with our S11 and S31 storage nodes. We have enhanced them to automatically balance capacity across multiple nodes for best performance and capacity. And the S series software that runs on top of these nodes, has been tuned to deliver more performance, up to 3x more performance both for reads and writes. There is no compromise for getting this performance capability. And that software also allows us to get better density across the rack as well. Up to 3x more density, 15 PB of capacity in a single rack.

“The other interesting thing to point out about HCP is that you can use your existing storage with that as well,” Gallagher added. “You can also now use our VSP 5000 and E990 for that lower tier of storage, behind the HCP.

Hitachi Vantara has a hybrid Go-to-Market model, but their high-end solutions have typically been sold mainly direct. The company says that the channel component of this business will be increasing, however.

“We are really investing in our partners right now, and this will be a key part of that going forward,” Harris said.

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