"It's not a company per se, but a model that could find a chink in
EMC's armor," says John Webster, an analyst with New Hampshire-based data
storage research firm Illuminata Inc.
It takes a minute to get your head around Scale Eights service, but,
essentially, customers have to buy its Global Storage Port, a small device
that sits on their LAN. They then install its cunning Global File System
(8FS) software, which makes the box appear to be connected to whatever
storage system its accessing.
Scale Eight storage can be accessed via two methods:
For access to files via a LAN, one of these Global Storage Port devices
is deployed on the customer LAN, and transparently accesses Scale Eight
storage centers as needed. The device appears to servers and applications as
a standard NFS/CIFS (Network File System/Common Internet File System) file
server. Its deployment and service initiation typically require less than
an hour, the company boasts.
For access to files via the WAN, Scale Eight automatically generates an
8RL (authenticated URL) for each file, which enables files to be served from
Scale Eight storage centers directly to an end-user browser. These storage
centers are MTVi Group, Akamai Technologies Inc.
(Nasdaq: AKAM), and Exodus
Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: EXDS), which are all involved in reselling
Scale Eights services.