SUSE Software-Defined Storage Leverages Open Source to Break Proprietary Lock-in and Reduce Cost

Gartner analysts noted in a recent Cool Vendor report:

It has become painfully evident that storage capacity demands, and expectations for far more rapid provisioning of that storage, have far outpaced the ability of [infrastructure and operations] teams' capabilities. Far-more-automated systems are required to restore a sense of balance, that is, storage solutions that offer much greater scale, but also much more automation.

The power of storage solutions has always resided in the software. SUSE software-defined storage gives one more flexibility and choice than traditional storage appliances provide. It allows users to meet constantly, even exponentially growing storage needs more securely and cost effectively using industry-standard hardware and open-source-based software-defined storage solutions. Accordingly, SUSE has introduced SUSE Enterprise Storage 5 with enhanced ease of management, improved performance and expanded features, including new disk-to-disk backup capabilities for enterprise customers, fulfilling the need for "much greater scale, but also much more automation" as cited by Gartner.

"Every generation of enterprise infrastructure innovation is now being built on open source", said Gerald Pfeifer, Vice President of Products and Technology Programs at SUSE. He continued:

SUSE is expert at both contributing to and using upstream innovation to create enterprise-grade, secure solutions that can be combined with other technologies to best address customer needs. This approach applied to software-defined storage delivers highly scalable solutions that radically reduce storage costs in terms of both capital and operations expense.

SUSE Enterprise Storage 5

The latest release of SUSE's intelligent software-defined storage management solution, SUSE Enterprise Storage 5, will enable IT organizations to accelerate innovation and reduce costs by efficiently transforming their enterprise storage infrastructures. It is based on the Luminous release of the Ceph open-source project, and it is ideally suited for compliance, archive, backup and large data storage. Large data applications include video surveillance, CCTV, online presence and training, streaming media, X-rays, seismic processing, genomic mapping and computer-assisted design. Backup and archive applications include Veritas NetBackup, Commvault and Micro Focus Data Protector, along with compliance solutions such as iTernity.

SUSE Enterprise Storage 5 is the first commercial offering to support the new BlueStore back end within Ceph. This follows SUSE's first-to-market support for iSCSI and CephFS in previous versions of SUSE Enterprise Storage. Notable benefits of this release include:

  • The ability to service environments that require higher levels of performance through the new BlueStore native object storage back end. SUSE Enterprise Storage 5 offers up to double the write performance of previous releases, coupled with significant reductions in I/O latency.

  • The ability to free up capacity and reduce data footprint via BlueStore-enabled data compression.

  • Increased disk space efficiency of a fault-tolerant solution through enablement of erasure coding for replicated block devices and CephFS data.

  • Lowered operational cost with an expanded advanced graphical user interface for simplified management using the next-generation openATTIC open-source storage management system.

  • Simplified cluster management and orchestration through enhanced Salt integration.

  • Production support for the Network File System (NFS) Gateway exporting the RADOS object gateway (RGW) and enabling legacy file applications that need a filesystem interface to access cloud native Amazon S3 or Swift data.

  • A technical preview of Ceph's ability to export a filesystem to CIFS/Samba for heterogeneous connectivity.

Disk-to-Disk Backup in SUSE Enterprise Storage

SUSE Enterprise Storage 5 also offers an efficient and flexible disk-to-disk backup solution that is scalable, self-managing, fault tolerant, always on and easy to upgrade. SUSE Enterprise Storage delivers these capabilities without the costs typically associated with high-end functionality. Inexpensive industry-standard hardware running open-source software lets customers avoid the high prices and vendor lock-in of proprietary solutions. SUSE Enterprise Storage also beats the cost of enterprise open-source alternatives as well as commercial offerings with an innovative licensing model that avoids per-gigabyte storage costs.

In addition, the need for a separate deduplication device (a sophisticated device usually associated with proprietary solutions that is designed to reduce the overall storage volume by eliminating duplicated data) is eliminated through advanced backup software that provides deduplication services. SUSE is certified with leaders in enterprise backup software, including Commvault and Veritas, all of which feature built-in deduplication.

In a recent total cost of ownership comparison of disk backup solutions and software-defined storage in general, SUSE specifically came out on top. According to IT Brand Pulse, "The cost data says SUSE is the clear value leader led by best-in-class pricing model that includes support in the software license and, unlike others where license costs are front-loaded, the cost of a software is spread out evenly over the five years."

SUSE Enterprise Server 5 will be available in the fourth quarter. For more information, visit

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