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Containers Continue Invasion Of Software-Defined Storage, Nexenta Joins Fray

By - Source: Nexenta

Nexenta is planting its flag firmly in the flash realm with its recent announcements of a joint venture with SanDisk to create a powerful InfiniFlash-powered AFA (All-Flash Array), and then the ensuing announcement of another collaborative project with Supermicro for its 115 TB SDS (Software-Defined Storage) AFA.

All-flash arrays are uniquely well suited for demanding randomized VM environments, but the near-spontaneous combustion of the container movement is the bellwether of a containerized future. Nexenta designed its NexentaEdge unified block and object storage services for high-performance scale-out applications, and pairing performance with a cohesive containerized strategy is a core tenet of any future-looking SDS architecture.

Nexenta is infusing its NexentaEdge SDS solution with numerous features to support containers, and it all starts with the company's involvement in the Open Container Initiative (OCI) and Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). These bodies are providing the core collaboration required for Nexenta to incorporate microservices on scale-out clusters (or Linux servers) and fuse them with its existing data services -- such as inline deduplication, compression, unlimited snapshots and clones, among others.

Another key initiative is the ClusterHQ Flocker volume plug-in for NexentaEdge and NexentaStor, which provides the containers with stateful characteristics and allows them to run seamlessly on disaggregated compute and storage architectures. The inclusion of stateful containers, increased flexibility and mobility allows containers to compete with VMs for workloads, but the immediate future likely holds both a mix of containers and VM approaches. In fact, many of the early container implementations are running inside existing VM infrastructure.

To that end, the company is also supporting VMware's Photon OS, a nearly transparent VM designed specifically for housing containers. NexentaEdge also supports storage microservices with Kubernetes, and Nexenta offers compatibility with Canonical's Juju, Charms and LXD.

"Containers and microservice architectures have changed the way new applications are developed, deployed and managed at scale. At Nexenta, we're focusing on the next stage of infrastructure evolution, building software-defined storage management for containers and enabling seamless stateful container mobility on truly container-converged infrastructure. NexentaEdge is a natural fit for enabling these new architectures," said Thomas Cornely, Chief Product Officer at Nexenta.

SDS architectures designed to take advantage of the lightweight characteristics of containers, while also boosting their resiliency and addressing some of the challenges associated with container deployment, is becoming table stakes for the SDS crowd. Hedvig recently announced its development of a ClusterHQ Flocker plug in, so competition will be intense as SDS implementations, and containers, work their way into the mainstream.