DataDirect Networks Introduces Massively Scalable Cloud Storage System

DataDirect Networks announced Web Object Scaler (WOS), a scalable, multi-site cloud storage system designed to solve the performance, scalability, and infrastructure management challenges created by global content creation, storage and distribution.

June 22, 2009

6 Min Read
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CHATSWORTH, CA -- 06/22/09 -- DataDirect Networks, Inc. (DDN), the leading data infrastructure provider for the most demanding, content-intensive environments -- including hundreds of the world's largest photo, video, online gaming, music, social networking sites, broadcasting, post production, and high performance computing facilities, today announced Web Object Scaler (WOS), a scalable, multi-site cloud storage system designed to solve the performance, scalability, and infrastructure management challenges created by global content creation, storage and distribution.

In today's on-demand world, content-intensive applications, such as websites, social networks, photo sharing, e-bills, bank check processing and medical and document imaging, are creating demanding challenges on file and storage systems. These applications are driving file counts into the tens of billions and driving file request rates beyond what traditional storage and file systems were designed to handle. Further exacerbating the problem is the need to distribute content among multiple data centers, for disaster recovery or in order to place content close to the requesting user to keep latency to a minimum.

"File and object-based data is changing the world of content storage. The real-time need to quickly and very cost effectively access and retrieve that data from anywhere across the globe, requires a completely new approach to data handling systems design," said Alex Bouzari, CEO and co-founder, DataDirect Networks. "We took a 'build it from the ground up' approach and designed in collaboration with the very customers whose problems we were trying to solve."

Bouzari continued, "With input from customers such as Slide Inc., the world's leading social entertainment company and application provider for Facebook and MySpace, the result was WOS, an easy to set up storage cloud that can start very small, yet scale to service the needs of tens of millions of users accessing hundreds of billions of files and multiple petabytes of information, from anywhere in the world."

Ideal for storing billions of files and objects across geographically dispersed data centers, WOS delivers:

  • Simplicity: WOS clouds create a single, global namespace for billions of files distributed among multiple sites; all managed from a single, easy to use, web-based GUI

  • Scale: A single WOS cloud can start with just a few Terabytes of storage, yet scale to Petabytes of data and hundreds of billions of files

  • Performance: Over 1 Million random file reads per second can be sustained, enabling direct, low-latency content service to huge user counts

  • Content Distribution: WOS supports automated policy-based content replication and distribution among multiple data centers with automatic load balancing

  • Robust Data Protection: The WOS cloud has no single points of failure and multiple self-healing capabilities to maintain seamless delivery of content under all conditions

Unlike traditional storage and file systems which were designed to be deployed in a single location, WOS is an object-based, globally clustered storage system that addresses the needs of content scale-out and distribution. Its intelligent software allows for a massively scalable content delivery platform to be created from small building blocks, enabling the system to serve entry-level needs, yet easily and non-disruptively grow to multi-petabyte scale."Administrators are struggling to keep up with the explosion of digital content and instant access expectations of today's Internet Era, because traditional storage technologies were just not designed to efficiently scale or to enable content delivery across multiple data centers," said Terri McClure, analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group. "DataDirect Networks recognizes that organizations can benefit from shifting to a cloud model but have legacy infrastructure in place. Rather than proposing a rip and replace solution, it is providing the stepping stones to start the transition to an internal scale-out cloud, building it up over time as IT evolves into a cloud model. DDN has leveraged its experience in content-rich media and entertainment environments and knowledge gained from over 200 petabytes deployed, to design a cloud storage system with extreme performance and multi-site, incremental scalability in mind."

Automated, Policy-based Content Distribution and Data Protection

Using policy-based content distribution, organizations can easily create disaster recovery sites, place content close to where it will be accessed to improve performance and reduce latency, or share content across the globe.

"Cloud-based storage is about putting the right data in the right place at the right time, while making it easy to manage and easy to scale," said Jeff Boles, senior analyst, Taneja Group. "With the one-two punch of the current economy and overwhelming unstructured data growth, cloud-based storage appeals to an almost universal need facing companies today. The problem is, few solutions on the market are built with a broad audience in mind, and often are only useful to the service provider or the largest enterprise. Web Object Scaler is built upon DDN's reputation for extreme hardware efficiency and scalability, and is out of the box ready for this broad audience requiring terabytes to petabytes of data storage. Moreover, it has the multi-tenancy, around the globe data movement, and policy components required to service cloud-stored data. For any organization that is looking at hosting unstructured data in an external or internal cloud, DDN's Web Object Scaler is looking like the solution to beat."

Regardless of where an object exists in the cloud, WOS automatically retrieves it using the least latent network path providing optimal content delivery. Because WOS is an object-based system, there is no complexity associated with having to manage SAN switches, RAID groups, LUNs, masking, and other storage administration functions. And since the entire cloud is a single namespace, WOS eliminates the need to purchase multiple storage and file systems, and therefore reduces storage costs. In addition, WOS manages storage provisioning, load balancing and data protection -- all from an easy-to-use web based GUI -- further simplifying the data management process.WOS can grow non-disruptively and reach massive scale, allowing users to dynamically add capacity as needed without having to purchase large storage systems in advance in order to plan for capacity growth. It also stores files without wasting capacity or running out of file system inodes, avoiding the problems of over-allocating space and limiting file counts like most traditional file systems -- even when storing billions of small files.

WOS clouds are built from self-contained appliances configured with disk storage, CPU, memory, and DDN's WOS operating system. Each node is pre-configured with the WOS software and multiple Gigabit Ethernet network interfaces, which enables access to the data from anywhere around the world.

WOS will be available in the third quarter of this calendar year. For more information, please call 1-800-837-2298 or visit
About DataDirect Networks
DataDirect Networks, Inc. (DDN), is the data infrastructure provider for the most extreme, content-intensive environments in the world -- including the largest online gaming and music sites, social networking applications developers, photo and video sharing services, high performance computing environments, and more than 400 broadcast and post-production facilities around the globe. With more than 215 petabytes installed worldwide, the company's technology delivers massive throughput, scalable capacity, consistency, efficiency and data integrity for today's extremely competitive and evolving markets. Founded in 1998, DataDirect Networks serves customers through its global partnerships with Dell, IBM, Sony and other industry leaders; and through its offices in Europe, India, Asia Pacific, Japan and throughout the U.S. For more information, go to or call +1-800-TERABYTE (837-2298).

DataDirect Networks, and Web Object Scaler are trademarks of DataDirect Networks, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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