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Three Object Storage Predictions for 2016

Article Written by Mario Blandini, Chief Evangelist and VP of Product Marketing, SwiftStack

Object storage in public and private cloud solutions is growing aggressively in adoption while customers are spending sequentially less on file and block storage. We're starting to see a shift in the way the IT community thinks about accessing unstructured data and applications. Here are three predictions on object storage for 2016.

Ubiquitous Access to Data

There is no need to predict that more application development will be done with "cloud" access in mind. This has already been the case for years, driven by mobile and consumerization. What will be new for storage infrastructure in 2016, I predict, is the architectural acceptance that access for unstructured data in private data centers will be determined by the application, not IT. In 2015 we saw many classic storage applications refactored for cloud API access to storage, and any storage infrastructure going forward will need to provide ubiquitous access as a new requirement. In a turn of events, storage infrastructure is expected to meet the needs of new apps, vs new apps having to build-in backward compatibility to old storage. Ubiquitous access with cloud APIs for all unstructured data will represent the lion's share of unstructured data stored. Optimal storage solutions will be those that can store and return the same data based on authentication rules no matter the access method. In via file, out via object, vice versa.

New Possibilities from Metadata

New data possibilities with on-premises and public cloud storage, built on object storage, will prove to be the larger benefit driving disruption in 2016, especially considering the increasing value of data. The virtualization of a single namespace with infinite scalability at a lower cost has driven object storage adoption to date, and the Metadata inherent to object storage opens new possibilities that are otherwise not possible with traditional file storage for unstructured data. The real business value is the ability to have metadata automatically stored with billions of data objects and petabytes of files using no additional time, resources, services or dollars.

The Hybrid Datacenter

Private cloud predictions of past years have not developed as originally described, largely due to unrealistic scope. Specific to storage, and applicable to compute, hybrid use of on-premises and cloud resources is better aligned with the goals many organizations have in reducing cost, increasing agility and modernizing their IT. I predict the developments of past years will enable IT teams to deploy and manage hybrid cloud architectures to meet their objectives. Bimodal is a new term associated with this movement, and software provides the building blocks. Specific to storage, IT teams benefit most when they can deploy and manage software that meets the needs of both classic workloads and cloud workloads. Industries including media & entertainment and life sciences have been successful in recent years using this bimodal IT approach in storage as they met the challenge of very high performance and scalability demands on flat budgets. IT organizations will design their architectures for the benefits of private cloud storage with a more specific scope that is achievable and manageable.

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About the Author

Mario Blandini, Chief Evangelist and VP of Product Marketing, SwiftStack

Passionate about disruption, Mario has previously lead marketing teams for Storage technology companies including Brocade, Drobo, and HGST. Mario has also deployed infrastructure in technical roles at Rhapsody Networks (now Brocade), Sanrise (now EMC), Adaptec, and the United States Marine Corps.

 

Published Thursday, January 21, 2016 6:31 AM by David Marshall
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