Moving data and workloads to the cloud can be a hefty task for enterprises and some still prefer to keep everything on-premise, so a startup has come up with a solution that decouples storage from compute.
“The common assumption was to provide adequate performance, you needed to couple storage and compute,” said Issy Ben-Shaul, founder and CEO of Velostrata. “We decided to challenge that premise.” The company enables enterprises to stream production workloads from on-premise storage into the cloud computing. The decoupling is done without sacrificing performance, he said.
Ben-Shaul said most customers are looking to make use of the cloud, but there are still some key barriers. Enterprises are less likely to move workloads into the cloud if they have particularly large data sets in the terabyte range, he said. “It takes time to move large workloads.” It also costs money to store data on the cloud as long as the data is there, whereas compute can be turned off.
In addition, it may be hard for enterprises to get approval to move storage to the cloud due to compliance and security concerns. They also don’t want to move workloads to clouds only to have them stuck with a particular provider.
Velostrata essentially provides on-demand hybrid cloud for production, said Ben-Shaul, by streaming production workloads to and from the cloud in minutes, while at the same time, leaving the storage on-premise. He said the technology does not require an IT department to make changes to the applications, images or storage. Complexity is avoided by providing a button the familiar vmWare vCenter interface as well as APIs for third-party management tools
Velostrata has had a beta program underway now for a couple of months with customers trying out the technology with actual workloads, said Ben-Shaul. Examples of how it is being used include as data center extension, so enterprises can move virtual machines from overloaded hosts to the cloud; for cloud bursting during peak times; for consolidating storage to a centralized data center while running virtual machines remotely; providing site-to-site disaster recovery without duplicating compute resources; and, to spin up virtual machines for development and testing in the cloud without migrating images or storage.
According to Enterprise Strategy Group senior analyst Colm Keegan, Velostrata is not the first company to dabble with technology that can stream workload data in this manner, but what it’s done is adapted it for the cloud. “There are other people doing this but generally more from a data protection standpoint,” he said. “The area Velostrata is focusing on is more of the active data set.”
As more organization push workloads into the cloud, Keegan said, one of the concerns is having the ability to easily migrate those workloads if they decide they want to change providers – Amazon today or Google tomorrow. They want to maintain “data sovereignty,” he said. Velostrata’s technology enables them keep stewardship of their data and not be at the mercy of a provider whenever they need to migrate data for whatever reason.
Keegan many businesses are still in the early stages of cloud consumption, but over time he said it will more common place to move workloads easily from different cloud providers. “Velostrata is rightfully focusing on this giving capability in data center so as you start to use different cloud providers you have some control and measure of security.”