Gluster: NAS Virtual Appliances For Amazon Cloud, VMware
Call it a sign of things to come at this week’s VMware Partner Exchange. Specifically, open source scale-out NAS vendor Gluster on February 15 will launch its first-ever virtual appliances, designed to deploy the GlusterFS file system in either a VMware environment or on the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud as an Amazon Machine Image (AMI). The goal is to give cloud service providers and channel partners an easy way to provide scale-out storage on Gluster’s faster architecture.
Gluster only sells software. But according to Gluster VP Jack O’Brien, that just means there’s a unique opportunity for cloud service providers and VARs to sell customers the hardware they want, while integrating Gluster with existing IT infrastructure. Moreover, most SANs are monolithic and make it difficult to share resources, but O’Brien says GlusterFS offers automatic resource pooling and a unique algorithmic approach that speeds up the search for unstructured data.
And all of that is now available in a virtual machine (VM) that can be deployed on any VMware-certified hardware in a local virtualized environment or as a dedicated Amazon EC2 instance in the public as an AMI. In both cases, Gluster channel partners have the ability to decouple storage from the underlying hardware and virtualize disk and memory resources. In other words, it adds cloud scalability to scale-out storage.
O’Brien claims Gluster has the most thorough QA team in the industry thanks to their open source approach and community of volunteers. Still, Gluster face stiff competition in the channel. We’ll be poking around this week’s VMware Partner Exchange in Orlando for more Gluster perspectives.