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November 04, 2009



Gene, you and I must have been on the same wavelength when you wrote this. At the same time, I was composing a similar entry in my blog about why storage is heading in this exact direction. I like the name Clustered Commodity Storage - I think it's a good one and I agree we should be rallying around a way to describe what so many people are trying to implement. Like many other trends in enterprise IT, the separation of hardware and software to drive costs down is almost predictable.

Anyone interested can read my post at http://www.autovirt.com/blogs/klavs-blog/entry/13.

Mark Davis


You've described a great vision. I think others have it too.

One huge gotcha is in the first word: Commodity.

Building a storage cluster from commodity parts (which all storage vendors do) does not make the cluster a commodity. All the non-commodity storage hardware vendors (which is just about all of them) love to obfuscate this wee detail.

A real commodity is does not require you purchase it from any particular vendor.

We have this commoditization on the server side: you can buy servers from, for example, HP and Dell and many others more or less interchangeably.

Doesn't work that way in storage land.

Which is a huge reason why data center servers are so cheap and data center storage is not.

Until you can buy storage hardware from two competing vendors and incorporate them into your CCS, you don't have CCS. You just have PCS (proprietary clustered storage).

Klavs is right in his blog post.


This was the beauty of ibrix pre-hp aquisition; they provided a software-only abstraction layer between front-end access and back-end storage. They can consume really any block device that you throw at it.
It will be interesting to see if the hp purchase stifles this flexibility.

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