BlueArc Titan 3200 Network Storage System

Storage management tools

Bronze Award:

Bycast Inc. StorageGRID 8

IT shops that are wary of the security or performance of cloud storage might take heart at some recent technology improvements. Bycast Inc.'s StorageGRID 8 software, which was traditionally strong in the medical archiving market, takes aim at the business and technical needs of private and public cloud storage providers. Key enhancements include discrete security partitions to enable service providers or IT departments to support multiple customers, or tenants, through a single system, as well as a Distributed File System Gateway (DFSG) to complement the product's distributed multitier object store.

Past StorageGRID technology supported NAS gateways for access to its storage systems, which make use of metadata and policies to organize data over geographically distributed locations. Version 8 uses a clustered file system to support n-way clustering of the gateways to boost performance.

The DFSG clustered file system front-end, coupled with StorageGRID's distributed archive, can help users scale their environments for a variety of applications. The product integrates a wide range of data storage assets, from high-performance disks to deep archive devices, in a single system that applications access through a standard file system interface.

Other new features include support for VMware Inc. ESX servers, and enhanced audit and reporting capabilities to enable storage service providers and IT departments to implement per-transaction, per-byte or per-asset chargeback models.

"The ability to segregate and audit data is critical," commented one judge.

Another judge, noting the product's "excellent functionality," said StorageGRID is "a bit pricey for the market but probably worth it."

Licenses are sold on a perpetual basis or pay-as-you-go model. Perpetual license fees are tiered and based on managed capacity. Pay-as-you-go pricing has lower upfront fees; providers pay more as their capacity grows, but the price per terabyte decreases as system size increases.

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