Review: Virtustream Storage Cloud

Though it would not be news for another scalable storage cloud platform option to be launched, the addition of the Dell EMC Virtustream Storage Cloud increases the competition of monoliths in this emerging market and certainly qualifies as headline news.

Virtustream Storage Cloud boasts a 1.78 Exabyte total capacity, which supports a Terabit per second of global network ingest and currently contains over 130 billion objects. During its growth, the platform was substantially tested as select customers utilized the platform to manage their own data, totaling in exabytes. Additionally, the platform includes an event monitoring system that processes more than 35 billion events per day. So, customers have already managed to utilize and thrive off this tool.

In a press release, Jeremy Burton, EMC President of Products and Marketing said that “any modern data center must extend seamlessly to the cloud, which is why we’re [EMC is] making cloud connectivity and cloud-tiering an inherent capability of all of our [EMC] products.” He continued, noting that “the Virtustream and the cloud capabilities in the storage products” allow “customers even more choices. They can tier to an EMC managed public cloud, EMC private cloud or third-party public cloud of their choice.”

At EMC World 2016 this past May, it was announced that Virtustream Storage Cloud would immediately debut as EMC’s frontline Webscale storage and backup system. Virustream was acquired by EMC in May 2015 due to its ability to provide a layer of cloud management that rests above the virtual machine (VM) layer. Its design creates more accurate controls for users and allows itself to be more appealing and valuable for enterprise businesses.

Review: Virtustream Storage Cloud Offers More Than Just a Cloud - YourDailyTech
Virtustream Storage Cloud

This storage cloud is not a new project, however. It has developed and been tested over the past four years, according to EMC. It began as a small proof-of-concept that has evolved into an enterprise-class storage service; it boasts a 1.78 Exabyte total capacity, which supports a Terabit per second of global network ingest and currently contains over 130 billion objects.

During its growth, the platform was substantially tested as select customers utilized the platform to manage their own data, totaling in exabytes. Additionally, the platform includes an event monitoring system that processes more than 35 billion events per day. The support infrastructure elements have been successfully running the production for several years now during this testing time, according to the company.

In addition to being a Web-scale object storage platform, Virustream Storage Cloud can provide cloud extensibility with the opportunity for customizable scaling for on-premises EMC storage and cloud infrastructure as a service (IaaS) deployments. This service includes storage tiering, long-term backup retention and cold storage in the cloud.

Enterprises soon can deploy Web-scale object storage for cloud-native applications using a simple, S3-compatible application programming interface. Virustream Cloud’s application lifecycle control and automation functionality focus specifically on I/O-intensive enterprise applications that operate on highly automated, multitenant cloud systems, such as SAP’s in-memory S/4HANA database and large, conventional, parallel databases.

For enterprise developers that are looking at the Virtustream Storage Cloud for leveraging their own system needs, the service follows the common S3 APIs. It is also compatible with most open source libraries that facilitate cloud storage usage. This service also operates with open source tools such as Cyber Duck for manually controlling object content and analysis.

EMC offerings that support the platform include:

  • EMC Data Domain: Using the Data Domain® Cloud Tier, data can automatically be moved directly from EMC protection storage to Virtustream Storage Cloud for seamless, cost effective long-term backup retention.
  • EMC Data Protection Suite™: Software that tiers backup data from EMC protection software to Virtustream Storage Cloud for long-term backup retention.
  • EMC VMAX®, XtremIO® and Unity™ Systems: These program options will tier data to the cloud to reduce the on-site primary storage footprint while maintaining optimal performance through on premise client-side caching and the Virtustream Storage Cloud.
  • EMC Isilon: This system will archive cold data to the cloud using on premises Isilon® CloudPools policies to govern the placement and retention of tiered files in the Virtustream Storage Cloud.

This flexibility is important for allowing developers to build their own data management and storage systems incorporating what already supports Virtustream Cloud Storage.

Virtustream’s integrated into the EMC ecosystem over the last year has been fairly smooth. It has meant that longtime partners of EMC like SAP and VMware products and software work extensively with the Virtustream software. Additionally, the Storage Cloud has been enhanced by the Mozy backup cloud service developers to benefit enterprise scale businesses.

EMC’s Syncplicity, a solution in the hybrid enterprise file sync and share market, will also employ the Virtustream Storage Cloud to meet the customers’ mobility and security needs.

“Virtustream offers a complete Hybrid EFSS solution enabling rapid large-scale deployments,” said Syncplicity CEO Jon Huberman. “The combination of Syncplicity’s hybrid EFSS solution with Virtustream’s highly secure and scalable storage cloud delivers mobile access anytime, anywhere and on any device, with the security and data residency compliance demanded by enterprises.”

Key features of the solution include:

  • An engineered-in resiliency delivering up to 13 x 9s percent of data durability
  • Store cloud architected and optimized for performance, particularly for large object sizes
  • Available read-after-failure provides resiliency and data integrity even in case of single site failure
  • Seamless extensibility of on-premises primary storage and backup to the cloud
Review: Virtustream Storage Cloud Offers More Than Just a Cloud - YourDailyTech
Virtustream Storage Cloud

Virtustream Storage Cloud has four tiers of service offerings based on the need and capacity of enterprise businesses. Even if the demands of the business evolve or shift over time, the shift from one level to another is simple.

Review: Virtustream Storage Cloud Offers More Than Just a Cloud - YourDailyTech
Virtustream Storage Cloud

In the global, hyperscale storage cloud market, there are several household names already available: IBM Softlayer, Oracle Cloud, Microsoft Azure, and Amazon Web Services. Depending on a company’s tiering needs, deposit amount of cold data into the cloud, and storage capacity demands, enterprises may prefer one vendor over others. Third party programs and applications utilized by the IT developers may also affect and alter the best fit.

Since the announcement of the Virtustrea Storage Cloud, it has become available as both on-premises and IaaS deployments for large enterprises; Virtustream Storage Cloud with Syncplicity became generally available on May 10 with nodes in the United States and Europe.

As EMC has previously mentioned, Virtustream Storage Cloud has been designed from the ground up to support a complete range of enterprise use cases. The long testing period and a large network of support applications and businesses make the Virtustream Storage Cloud an edgy competitor in an already crowded and impressive market niche.


Additional Resources:

Virtustream Data Sheet
Virtustream Case Studies

Lindsey Cobb

Lindsey Cobb, a Georgia native and former history major, is a technology researcher who is fascinated by past and future of technology. When she is not engrossed in the prophecy of science fiction stories, Lindsey is likely to be planning her next adventurous trip or petting every dog she meets. Contact Lindsey at [email protected]