Spurred on by its embrace of open source software projects and its recent acquisition of MySQL, Sun said it opened up its storage software to let developers build low-cost storage appliances as well as repurpose and reuse hardware through the simple addition of new software, something currently not available by storage makers like EMC, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, and IBM.
Housed at the OpenSolaris storage page, Sun has peppered its Web site with resources designed to get developers up to speed on simple commands in Solaris for performing data management tasks, such as ZFS, NFS, CIFS, and Comstar. With the knowledge gained, Sun claims developers can even build a network-attached storage (NAS) appliance based on OpenSolaris in 10 minutes or less.
"The storage industry is undergoing a radical transformation that parallels what servers went through a decade ago," John Fowler, executive VP of Sun's systems group, said in a statement. "Solaris OS, ZFS, and the work of the OpenSolaris storage community provide rock-solid, enterprise-class scalability and value, giving customers a low-cost way to leverage these open architectures without sacrificing quality or reliability."
The Open Storage strategy also dovetails with Sun's existing products like the Sun Fire x4500 server "Thumper" system, a hybrid data server and storage system. Sun said its eager to see how the marketplace responds to the new tools and services.
Much like its launch of the OpenSolaris movement, Sun says it has remained ahead of the game through the creation of the OpenSolaris storage community. Hitachi Data Systems, Qlogic, and Emulex have contributed their software to the OpenSolaris community. Other community participants include storage solutions vendors like Nexenta, which leverages OpenSolaris OS and ZFS innovation to deliver a NAS software system.
In addition, instructor-training provider LiveAmmo uses the OpenSolaris OS innovation of Project Comstar to provide its customers with a low-cost Fibre Channel SAN infrastructure. Companies across the IT landscape also are using OpenSolaris storage technologies within their product offerings. Examples include database leader MySQL; content management companies like Drupal, Confluence, and Alfresco; and CRM provider SugarCRM.