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Seagate, Toshiba, Scality And Others Launch Kinetic Open Storage Platform For Smart, Low-Overhead Cloud Object Storage

Posted Aug 16, 2015 by Frederic Lardinois (@fredericl)
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PLUMgrid Partners With Linux Foundation To Open-Source Its IO Visor Project

Two years ago, Seagate debuted a new technology for hard drives that essentially gives applications direct access to some of its drives over an Ethernet connection to store objects using key-value pairs. This reduces the overhead that comes with traditional file systems and file servers and allows vendors to pack more drives into their racks. Seagate made drivers for this technology available for OpenStack’s Swift object storage and Riak, and Toshiba also recently launched some drives built on the same technology.

figure-3-drive-application-software-api-new-612x792Now, an alliance that includes the three major hard drive manufacturers (Seagate, Toshiba and Western Digital), as well as Cisco, Cleversafe, Dell, DigitalSense, NetApp, Open vStorage, Red Hat and Scality, is joining the Linux Foundation to develop Kinect going forward.

The Kinect Open Storage Project will shepherd the development as a Linux Foundation Collaborative Project with the goal of “providing open source object storage on next generation, Ethernet-enabled storage devices.”

The project combines both the specs for the ethernet connectivity with the key/value store technology on the drives. The project will manage the APIs, open source libraries and simulators for interfacing with these Kinect-based drives.

As Seagate first argued when it launched this project, old-school file-based systems are quickly being replaced with object-based approaches, especially in data centers.

“The new paradigm is an object-oriented one: a world of pictures, movies, ecommerce and Web data, search, and games, and archives of all of these,” the company says. These objects — which mostly consist of unstructured data — are written, read and deleted, but they are never modified, which makes them ideal candidates for a key/value store.

kinetic-3-5-4tb-left-400x400Jim Zemlin, the executive director of the Linux Foundation, told me he believes that the Kinect project is a textbook case for going the open source route. The partners here are obviously competitors, but they want to compete on hardware, not software — and the software vendors in the alliance want to offer tools to manage the hardware.

“If a project is singularly led, owned and maintained by a single company, you’ll hit the glass ceiling at some point,” he noted and added that there’s simply too much software to be written by a single company. But then these companies need a neutral player who can manage these projects and create a place where they can gather and invest in the projects — and that’s where the Linux Foundation’s Collaborative Projects come in, which are quickly becoming a standard for these kinds of open source projects.

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    • Cisco

      • Founded 1984
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      • Overview Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in IT that helps companies seize the opportunities of tomorrow by proving that amazing things can happen when you connect the previously unconnected. At Cisco customers come first and an integral part of our DNA is creating long-lasting customer partnerships and working with them to identify their needs and provide solutions that support their success. …
      • Location San Jose, California
      • Categories Networking, Web Hosting, Software, Hardware
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    • Dell

      • Founded 1984
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      • Overview Dell is an end-to-end solutions provider that has evolved from a PC manufacturer to an enterprise IT solutions partner with servers, storage, networking,software and services that enable customers to drive results, create competitive advantage and expand their opportunities. Dell was acquired by founder Michael Dell and Silverlake Partners after having gone public in 1988.
      • Location Round Rock, Texas
      • Categories Hardware + Software
      • Founders Michael Dell
      • Website http://www.dell.com
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    • NetApp

      • Founded 1992
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      • Overview NetApp creates storage and data management solutions that are designed to help customers accelerate business breakthroughs and achieve outstanding cost efficiency.
      • Location ,
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      • Website http://netapp.com
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    • Red Hat

      • Founded 1995
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      • Overview Red Hat, Inc. is a company dedicated to free and open source software, and a major Linux distribution vendor. The company is best known for its enterprise operating system Red Hat Enterprise Linux, and more recently through the acquisition of open source enterprise middleware vendor JBoss. Red Hat provides operating system platforms along with middleware, applications, and management solutions, as …
      • Location Munich, Bayern
      • Categories Linux, Open Source, Software
      • Website http://www.redhat.com
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    • Seagate

      • Founded 1979
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      • Overview Seagate Technology plc (Seagate) designs, manufactures, markets and sells hard disk drives. Seagate produces a range of disk drive products addressing enterprise applications, where its products are designed for enterprise servers, mainframes and workstations; client compute applications, where its products are designed for desktop and notebook computers, and client non-compute applications, where …
      • Location Scotts Valley, California
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    • The Linux Foundation

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      • Overview The Linux Foundation promotes, protects, and standardizes Linux by hosting important workgroups, events, and online resources. The consortium offers Linux marketing, compliance training and consulting, and strategy consulting services; corporate, custom, government, and academic Linux training solutions; and FOSS Bar Code Tracker that enables product development teams to create FOSS bill of materials, …
      • Location San Francisco, California
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      • Website http://www.linuxfoundation.org
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    • Toshiba Corporation

      • Founded 1939
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      • Overview Toshiba, a world leader in high technology, is a diversified manufacturer and marketer of advanced electronic and electrical products, spanning information & communications equipment and systems, Internet-based solutions and services, electronic components and materials, power systems, industrial and social infrastructure systems, and household appliances.
      • Location Tokyo, Tokyo
      • Categories Hardware + Software
      • Website http://www.toshiba.co.jp
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    • Western Digital

      • Founded 1970
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      • Overview Western Digital develops, manufactures, and sells data storage solutions that enable consumers, businesses, governments, and other organizations to create, manage, experience, and preserve digital content. The company offers hard disk drives (HDDs) and solid-state drives for desktop and notebook personal computers (PCs) as well as the performance enterprise and capacity enterprise markets. It also …
      • Location Irvine, California
      • Categories Hardware
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