Recently Object Matrix was asked the question: what does a MatrixStore do that “scale-out storage” system X does not… the potential customer in question required a place to keep data for 3-5 years.

Well, there are many things, and I would argue: the proof is in the pudding! Our first customers with the MatrixStore appliance are now over 3 years old and many of those customers have wanted to expand their storage capacity within their cluster.

Had they had the misfortune to of purchased a non-MatrixStore storage solution, the chances are that the only way that they could have expanded storage capacity is to have bought a new node with the same storage capacity as the old nodes. Clearly, that doesn’t work over the years. Disks are now 4TB in size, and 6TB disks are rumoured to be out this year: do you really want to be buying systems with 500GB drives in 2013? Do you want to have to build a new cluster every time you need more disk space? Of course the answer is no.

When Object Matrix customers upgrade, they have the option to take larger nodes with the latest hardware and to mix them into their existing cluster. Superb. Secondly, if the day ever comes, they have the option to roll-out old hardware that isn’t required anymore, and the data will automatically migrate to the rest of the cluster.

There are many other benefits to the MatrixStore solution for archive (selection of appropriate policies for data retention, replication, ILM options to tape, metadata search available even after data migration, etc). Here’s a small table of benefits:

Benefit Description
Scale with any size node Mix and match different nodes sizes in the same cluster
Scale from small to large Start with a 3 node cluster but keep scaling to Petabytes
Data migration in-place If you ever decide to roll-out very old hardware, the system can automatically migrate your data on to the new nodes
Forever Audit Audit trails are kept with the same levels of protection as your original data
Data Storage Policies Keep data with 1-4 instances, according to the level of protection it requires
Regulation Compliance Policies Keep data locked down from deletion for as long as you require
ILM to tape Migrate data from MatrixStore to tape, if required
Metadata search after data migration If you require migration to tape, metadata can still be searched within MatrixStore
Usage of off-the-shelf enterprise hardware Because MatrixStore uses Linux and standard file systems, we’ll always be able to support new hardware that comes out and that is supported by Linux, and/or new manufacturers
Cope with new file sizes e.g., if you have scaled your cluster to cope with SD, and then need to cope with HD, 3D, 4K… then the cluster can be easily upgraded
Copes with software obsolescence DAMs and MAMs come and go, but MatrixStore can be a central repository for not just your data, but your metadata as well


So when making your scale-out storage buying decision, my question would be: is this a solution for today, or one that you wish to add to over the coming years?

See also:

Be though my strength and speed

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