IBM expanded its cloud object storage portfolio with a deep cold archive and flexible pricing.
The IBM Cloud Object Storage Cold Vault that launched Monday is for retention of archived data that is seldom accessed. The vendor also added IBM Cloud Object Storage Flex, a new class of storage that allows customers to toggle between IBM Cloud Object Storage standard, cold and vault tiers.
The flexible pricing is intended for unpredictable workloads with highly variable access patterns, such as data that returns to active demand after having been dormant in cold storage.
IBM also signed partnerships with NetApp and Veritas Technologies, allowing those vendors to access the IBM object storage to facilitate backups from their data protection products.
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IBM's object storage is based on the Cleversafe storage it acquired in 2015. The flexible pricing does not replace the consumption-based model IBM rolled out last year.
Customers choosing flexible pricing can store and retrieve data as needed, with caps for monthly storage capacity. Additional charges are incurred for running operations against the data. The new pricing model will become generally available in April via the IBM Bluemix marketplace.
"We believe the flex storage class encourages our clients to leverage their data using IBM's analytics and cognitive tools, and not have to pay excessive amounts for accessing that data," said Russ Kennedy, vice president of product strategy for IBM Cloud Object Storage.
The IBM rollout will appeal to customers who are starting to tier data between the cloud and physical on-premises storage, said Deepak Mohan, a research director on public cloud infrastructure at analyst firm IDC.
"It's a toggle switch on a continuum between archival and cloud storage that you can do on the fly," Mohan said. "Nobody offers something of this sort at scale. It is a pioneering new way for end customers to treat cold data, [compared to] what they could do in the past."
IBM qualifies NetApp, Veritas object backup storage
The partnership with NetApp allows customers to write backups from NetApp AltaVault hybrid appliances to IBM Cloud Object Storage. NetApp will also integrate IBM's object storage on AltaVault archive and backup products through its sales channel.
In addition, IBM certified its object storage to support cloud backups with Veritas NetBackup 8, which will be available on IBM Bluemix.
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