MayaData is the creator of the open-source OpenEBS container-attached storage project.

Jeffrey Schwartz

November 22, 2021

4 Min Read

DataCore, among the first to deliver SAN virtualization software two decades ago, is expanding into container-native storage by acquiring MayaData. The acquisition, announced last week, is DataCore’s latest effort to move beyond management of traditional block storage.

The growth of container-based applications managed by Kubernetes has driven storage management software providers to build or buy these capabilities. Among them, Commvault acquired Hedvig in 2019, Pure Storage bought Portworx and Veeam picked up Kasten.

DataCore started heading down this path two years ago when it formed an OEM arrangement with Hammerspace to launch vFilo. The solution gave DataCore a scale-out file system and the ability to virtualize customers’ existing storage infrastructure.

Keep up with the latest channel-impacting mergers and acquisitions in our M&A roundup.

Earlier this year, DataCore acquired Caringo, provider of the Swarm object storage platform. At the same time, DataCore began investing in MayaData, creating a joint-venture in the development of OpenEBS container-attached storage solution.

DataCore CEO Dave Zabrowski said OpenEBS is the only open-source, container-attached storage offering currently available.


DataCore’s Dave Zabrowski

“That product has gotten tremendous take-up in the industry,” Zabrowski said. “We’re talking like a million pulls per month type of type of deployment.”

Growth of Container Workloads Accelerates

Zabrowski told Channel Futures that demand for containers from customers has escalated during the past two years. The demand was consistent with findings from consulting firm Evaluator Group.

A recent Evaluator Group survey of enterprises found that 84% have adopted or planned to implement container-based applications. Among them, one-third plan to maintain both traditional and container-based workloads, according to the survey. One-third will keep a mix of traditional and container-based workloads and 29% intend to migrate move most or all workloads to containers.


Evaluator Group’s Dave Raffo

“Containers aren’t going away,” said Evaluator Group senior analyst for hyperconverged infrastructure and container-native storage Dave Raffo. “Down the road, as more and more containers go into production, people are going to need storage for it.”

The maturity of OpenEBS and demand from current DataCore customers and prospects made the case for acquiring the company outright. During the Fall KubeCon/CloudNativeCon conference, MayaData launched OpenEBS 3.0, which has enhanced storage layer and data orchestration features.

Plan for Growth

DataCore will maintain the open-source investment “because that’s an important part of the MayaData story,” Zabrowski said.

While the open-source OpenEBS is free, MayaData has revenue-generating support options.

Next year, DataCore plans to boost revenues from MayaData with a commercial solution focused on enterprise workloads, Zabrowski said. The goal is to also add a common management interface for file, block and container storage, he added.

Expanding into container-attached storage was a move DataCore had to make. DataCore’s flagship offering, SANsymphony, has enabled the company to thrive since introducing it in 2000. Over the years, SANsymphony has evolved into a high-performance, software-defined storage solution.

DataCore now competes with storage management, and hyperconverged infrastructure from providers including Nutanix, VMware, Scality and Nexenta. While it will continue to compete with those players and others, the company expects to expand its addressable market.

“We are matching the storage needs to the container requirements, and not forcing the traditional classic storage needs onto a container,” Zabrowski said.

Partner Readiness

Despite the technical differences between block and file storage and container-attached storage, DataCore partners are learning about the new technology. Zabrowski said partners are aware of the growth potential from cloud-attached storage.

“In the Kubernetes market, trained labor is at a premium because it’s a new technology,” Zabrowski said. you know, because it’s a new technology. “The channel partners who are really forward-looking and forward-investing, are going to do really well because the market demand is going to be there.”

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Jeffrey Schwartz or connect with him on LinkedIn.


About the Author(s)

Jeffrey Schwartz

Jeffrey Schwartz has covered the IT industry for nearly three decades, most recently as editor-in-chief of Redmond magazine and executive editor of Redmond Channel Partner. Prior to that, he held various editing and writing roles at CommunicationsWeek, InternetWeek and VARBusiness (now CRN) magazines, among other publications.

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