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Nasuni cloud storage moves all-flash, disk appliances to Dell

The NF-600 edge filer for solid-state drives highlights a refresh across Nasuni's cloud hardware gateways. NF appliances are now standardized on Dell PowerEdge servers.

Cloud NAS provider Nasuni Corp. this week revamped its Nasuni Filer NF hardware line, which is now based exclusively on Dell commodity servers.

The product refresh includes a new all-flash NF-600 Nasuni cloud gateway, designed on Dell's PowerEdge R630 Rack Server. Customers can order NF-600 from Nasuni resellers and get up to 35 TB of flash cache.

Nasuni also sells a base NF-600 all-flash model, which comes with 10 commercially available 800 GB solid-state drives and a maximum of 6 TB of cache.

Nasuni cloud file services software take center stage

Nasuni has been gradually moving its appliances to Dell. New models also were rolled out for NF-200, NF-400 and NF-440 Nasuni cloud filers, all of which use spinning disk housed in Dell racks. The NF-440 provides 36 TB of cache, compared to NF-400, which comes with 8 TB, NF-200 (6 TB) and NF-60 (2 TB).

The NF-60 disk appliances complete the consolidation on Dell. New NF-60 models are based on Dell's T130 tower server, a shift from Supermicro servers.

The NF physical gateways bundle Nasuni UniFS Enterprise File Services software and sit at the edge of corporate networks. NF acts as a protocol converter between local storage and public cloud storage.

Everything we've been doing is designed to solve issues with protecting, managing, accessing and analyzing files.
John Capellovice president of product strategy, Nasuni Corp.

Nasuni UniFS moves entire data sets to cloud storage, caching only the most active data on the local appliance. Deltas are synced in the background to a gold copy stored securely in Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure public cloud storage.

Cloud gateway hardware emerged with the rise of enterprise cloud storage, but the appliance model has become heavily commoditized. Customers instead prefer a virtual controller that runs on industry-standard server racks.

Like its chief rival Panzura, Nasuni's cloud strategy is not primarily to sell hardware. The Natick, Mass.-based vendor said it sells NF boxes slightly above its cost. Nasuni generates the lion's share of revenue from annual subscription fees that start at $4,000 per usable TB per year.

Nasuni: Cloud customers overseas want certainty

John Capello, vice president of product strategy at Nasuni, said Dell standardization makes it easier to serve fast-growing markets in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

"We've started to reposition about 18 months ago. For us, it's all about files, not block storage. Everything we've been doing is designed to solve issues with protecting, managing, accessing and analyzing files," Capello said.

Nasuni said the all-flash NF-600 is performance storage associated with data-intensive design, engineering and media workloads.

"It's for times when you need to keep a lot of data resident in cache, but the full data set is stored in the cloud. We are starting to see a lot of workloads using LIDAR and other sophisticated 3D imaging files. Those type of applications work best if you have a lot of flexibility on what is stored in cache," Capello said.

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