Are you buying a cloud storage gateway appliance?

Enterprise data centers do create enormous amounts of data. But not all data requires equal accessibility. According to an estimate by Gartner, on an average it’s reasonable to assume that at least half of the data is rarely accessible. In some cases, 80% of data will not be accessed for weeks and even more than 6 months. This scenario creates an ideal environment to adopt cloud storage, as it presents the privilege of fulfilling data access requirements while permitting data to be hosted by a low cost cloud storage service.

Cloud storage can be a public or a private platform and this is where cloud gateway appliances can prove economically helpful.

But the first factor to consider before shipping for a cloud storage gateway appliance is to check the following-

  • What type of data will be accessed? Large files, small files, streaming video or other.
  • Will the data be serving application with highly random data access requirements or will it likely be repetitive?
  • Will the data be in an archive format, such as backup or recovery files?
  • Is cost containment a criterion or data access the criterion?
  • Will the gateway be a front ending tier four storage?

As soon as the storage admin makes a report of answers to the above said questions, then he/she can start searching for the vendor offering the product with these requirements. On knowing what type of data is being accessed is central to architecting the offering appropriately. If the data access is highly random, then data prepositioning won’t be nearly as beneficial as it would be for streaming large chunks of files or videos.

In the first case, a simple gateway will do while a more full blown data array would be needed to preposition data. If the data repository will be used as a data protection layer, then storage gateways with data compression and data deduplication might be beneficial.

Data accessibility will be the next criterion to consider while shopping for a storage gateway appliance. Make a note of whether data access will be more or less steady, or will there be significant peaks? Also make sure whether the data flow will be mostly one way or two ways? Selecting a gateway depending on the total throughput requirements will also prove economical. Also make a note of the point whether data needs to be encrypted, either at rest, in flight or both. And make sure that data access, audit requirements or regulatory compliance issues are addressed.

Now with all said and done, you can start shopping for a cloud storage gateway appliance. By using a cloud storage gateway, businesses can get the lowest cost storage profile while meeting data accessibility service level agreements.

If the business is going for a Gateway for data access, then data movement capabilities will be at the top of the list regarding product architectural considerations. Some products will use their own data movement software, wile some have in-built third party software.

There are two considerations to go with from here. The first is “upstream” to connect and communicate with devices in the central data center, which could be directly to servers, SAN switches, IP networks or other storage controllers. The second is “downstream,” or data access from the cloud.

Gateway appliances must be able to integrate with the specific infrastructure upstream and retrieve data from the downstream devices, but such considerations may eliminate some offerings that lack specific infrastructure support.

StoneFly, Inc. offers Gateway appliances which can be used with FlashCache on user’s local network. The StoneFly Gateway appliance is configured to cache and accelerate the data transferred between the local systems of users and the Stonefly Cloud Drive on Microsoft Azure.


StoneFly Gateway Accelerator

By using StoneFly FlashCache Gateway appliances, users can get rid of data transfer speeds over the internet limitations. Data is quickly written to and cached (temporarily stored) on lightning-fast solid state disk drives within the StoneFly Gateway prior to being securely transmitted to your remote iSCSI drives in the cloud.

By expediting the completion of writes, workloads on local workstations and servers are significantly reduced. Users can also cache hot data to the appliance. This greatly improves read performance and speeds up access to data as the same files do not have to be repeatedly downloaded from the cloud to your local systems, thereby reducing overall demand on bandwidth.

To know more call 510.265.1616 or click on StoneFly Cloud Acceleration Gateway


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