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Technology / Networks

Spectra Logic offers cheap-as-chips tape storage

Tape maven Spectra Logic has announced the BlackPearl Deep Storage Appliance that it says enables a new tier of storage to manage massive amounts of data indefinitely, at an extremely low cost.

BlackPearl is the first product to support the new DS3 interface (also recently announced by the company), which makes it easy for new data centre architectures to store large data objects on tape via a simple RESTful interface, according to the firm.

Spectra Logic also announced multiple ways data can move into a BlackPearl deep storage tier – a software client written specifically for Hadoop and big data environments, the Spectra Logic Developer Program for end users and ISVs that want to create their own clients, and the ability to export from nTier Verde NAS disk directly to deep storage in the future.

"The appliance sets the stage for the adoption of deep storage tiers across new and expanding use cases that currently cannot easily access the absolute lowest cost storage option due to the historic lack of RESTful, web-based interfaces to tape library storage," said Molly Rector, EVP product management and worldwide marketing, Spectra Logic.

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Rector told CBR that while cloud storage from the likes of Amazon can be as cheap as 1c per GB, very large datasets may be difficult to back up to the cloud due to network bottlenecks. "We’re saying that for around 5c a GB you remove the bottleneck and you also keep the data onsite if you wish," she said. "The average organisation is now having to think in Petabytes so they can’t just keep throwing disk at it."

The BlackPearl appliance offers a RESTful, object-based interface to deep storage by leveraging the new DS3 interface and acts as an intelligent intermediary between online and deep storage environments. It was designed for very large data sets that scale from hundreds of terabytes up to petabyte or exabyte in scale, and delivers the lowest cost way to store long term retention data, the easiest way to move bulk data into deep storage, and the most scalable long term storage available, according to the tape specialist.

Asked whether Spectra Logic might license DS3 – which provides a simple, RESTful intelligence layer between disk and tape or optical tiers – Rector said it has not been decided yet but that it would be a "logical step".
The firm claims the new offering gives Spectra the lowest purchase cost in the industry, with list pricing for a BlackPearl with tape library solution ranging from $0.09 – $0.14 per GB.

BlackPearl includes a DS3 server to which DS3 clients can connect and enable tape libraries to be used as object storage platforms accessible by Web applications. BlackPearl is said to automatically handle virtually all management of the deep storage system, including inventory, object locations, retries, error handling, and tracking ejected cartridges.


This article is from the CBROnline archive: some formatting and images may not be present.