New Object Storage Alliance to Foster Business Insight

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objectA group of leading technology vendors today announced the launch of the Object Storage Alliance. With a goal to promote advanced technologies that allow organizations to drive informed decisions, the Object Storage Alliance hopes to help users glean insights and maximize the business value of their information.

Approximately 80 percent of enterprise data is unstructured; and last year Gartner predicted that the growth in enterprise data would exceed 800 percent in five years. With unstructured data growing at enormous rates and organizations storing more unstructured data, such as multimedia files, presentations and email messages, IT administrators need better ways to manage, index, access and secure the data. The Object Storage Alliance was formed to assist in offering best practices and education on technologies that enable informed decisions, insight and information innovation.

The formation of the Object Storage Alliance is exceptionally timely for today’s IT marketplace, as it has shifted from a focus on infrastructure to end user requirements for information, insight and innovation,” said Ben Woo, managing director, Neuralytix, a global IT market research firm. “Object storage provides the scalability and flexible metadata management necessary for organizations to effectively use their data to achieve informed decisions, enhanced knowledge and data-driven innovation – which ultimately leads to competitive advantage, growth and value creation.”

The mission of the Object Storage Alliance is to promote the business value of object addressable storage. Eighteen industry-leading technology vendors have joined the vendor-neutral organization, organized by Neuralytix. Founding technology partners include Amplidata, Caringo, Cloudian, DataDirect Networks, Dell, EMC, Exablox, Hitachi Data Systems, HP, IBM, Intel, NEC, NetApp, Quantum, RedHat, Rorke Global Systems, SanDisk and Tarmin. In addition, founding knowledge and media members include Neuralytix, SNIA, Storage Switzerland, TechAccelerator and ExecEvent.

Object storage is a set of technologies that allow business data to be stored and preserved within its business context. It empowers applications to access data though a common access interface, eliminates data silos within an organization and enables users to better extract value from the data.

Many of today’s data centers are grappling with massive volumes of stored data. Big Data has grown so big that it is straining traditional, hierarchical file systems that are being challenged by the number of files and the amount of unstructured data. Object storage uses unique, nonhierarchical identifier addresses to locate and identify data objects. The identifier addresses allow for near-infinite address spaces and high scalability and create a system where storing and finding information doesn’t become more complicated with increased data volumes.

Object storage technologies include object addressable storage systems and software that organize data on a persistent storage medium. Attributes include user extensible metadata, location independence (e.g., on premises or in a cloud) and ‘self describing’ metadata that stays with the data object unless the metadata is a link that references the metadatabase.

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