What are the common storage challenges in the cloud era?


At present, organisations face a whole host of issues as they attempt to match the flexibility and scalability of the cloud. Indeed, a whitepaper from WekaIO observes that today's companies are encountering a number of storage challenges in the cloud era.

Common storage challenges in the cloud era

Today, many applications differ in terms of performance, scale, and other requirements which makes them unsuitable to run in existing cloud infrastructure. In turn, this leads to data silos and IT complexity when combined with the diversity of application file formats, access protocols, and data structures. If a user attempts to eliminate these conditions through consolidation, however, this can negatively impact application performance. In order to address this, storage architects sometimes add multiple storage tiers and use costly all-flash arrays (AFAs). While AFAs are optimised for performance, they are also costly and do not provide the scale and resiliency of the cloud. In addition to this, the whitepaper notes that "large applications may not fit within a single array." Although AFAs provide block storage protocols, these are not shareable across servers. In effect, these "workarounds" have catalysed a "costly and endless cycle" of "rearchitecting" infrastructure to keep up with changing application requirements.

The need for a unified storage solution

It is worth considering the fact that technology is inherently prone to failure when designing a modern storage solution. Technology also innovates at a rapid speed, and so a true software defined storage solution should accommodate these changes. In effect, the solution should be able to run on any available hardware. In addition to this, the tool should adapt to customer environments, add cloud-like agility, scalability, and on-demand performance. Above all, it should be simple to deploy and able to expand without the delays associated with traditional storage appliances. In order to address this, WekaIO created the software-only storage solution WekaIO Matrix. From the onset, the company designed Matrix to run on any standard Intel x86 based server hardware and commodity SSDs. This eliminates the cost of specialised hardware, while ensuring that companies can easily take advantage of technological innovation.

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