BlackPearl Object Storage Cloud
Spectra® BlackPearl® Object Storage Cloud is an on-premise data management platform that writes to multiple public and private cloud storage options. Enabling cloud workflows, when BlackPearl writes complete files to an S3 target, it takes advantage of the plethora of data processing services available in their cloud. With BlackPearl, the administrator can make simple changes to the data policy, seamlessly adding a local copy of data on other types of storage such as disk or tape. The high availability options can be built in from the onset, or added at any point later.
Staying in control of data management while enabling cloud workflows and cloud storage is a common challenge often faced when modernizing a data center. BlackPearl Object Storage Cloud overcomes these challenges with an easy-to-use GUI, a suite of technology partners for an end-to-end solution and set of software features to simplify data management. BlackPearl has the flexibility to offer onsite storage options as well as public cloud storage, with an adaptable storage management system that can adjust policies to match changing business needs.
In an enterprise workflow, the typical barrier to accessing or managing cloud data is an on-premise gateway. A gateway system helps an enterprise environment by offloading the management and interaction with the cloud technology and the gateway handles the higher latency, slower ISP connection to the public cloud. While the gateway products will vary, they all typically have some amount of cache or storage in the gateway to enable cloud use cases.
Acting as the on-premise gateway for cloud storage, BlackPearl has a physical cache that will buffer all data before writing it to the final cloud destination. The cache also enables parallel access for multiple applications simultaneously, and BlackPearl jobs will manage that data flow and cache capacity with the application.
There are two primary use cases for cloud storage. One use case is for disaster recovery (DR) or general cloud storage and the other use case enables cloud workflows.
Cloud Service Providers (CSP) typically offer multiple types of storage. The online storage, with lower latency, is typically the ‘hot’ tier of storage. These tiers charge more per month and have normal egress fees. Public CSP also offer an archive or offline ‘cold’ tiers, which have higher latency, but they have the lowest cost per month. These offline tiers also require a lengthy restore time that can take from a few hours to more than a day to restore the data back to the ‘hot’ online tier. Each restore has a low cost to get the data onto the ‘hot’ tier, and then there is the normal Egress fee to download the data out of the ‘hot’ tier.
BlackPearl supports the online tiers from many providers, and the colder/cheaper tiers from Amazon Web Services (AWS). BlackPearl supports Glacier tier today, and it will support AWS Deep Archive tier in a future release.
Some of the CSP also provide a multitude of data services, enabling an entire cloud workflow based on the data sent to the cloud. With services ranging from rendering & transcoding, to analyzing & artificial intelligence, as well as content distribution networks (CDN) – just to name a few services. With BlackPearl’s ability to write entire objects to S3 cloud targets, a cloud-based workflow begins by sending data to a specific bucket on BlackPearl, which then writes the data to the corresponding cloud storage bucket. From there, a cloud workflow will use the new data in the cloud bucket, unlocking the full potential and value of your data on the CSP.
Multiple ways to Cloud
There are many ways to work with cloud storage. When using BlackPearl as the cloud gateway, a specific client application is required — one that integrates with BlackPearl’s ReST interface. BlackPearl has an ecosystem of certified technology partners and software products that are common in many enterprise companies. These partners enable the employees and end users to send data to BlackPearl, which then goes to the cloud storage target.
Sizing the BlackPearl for throughput with data going to a public CSP will depend mostly on the ISP or internet connection from the data center to that cloud. From there, the throughput of BlackPearl can be greater than the ISP, but the ISP speed will be the limiting factor for sizing. A WAN or cloud acceleration product may be useful to help provide a higher overall throughput to the cloud.
When using an on-premise CSP object storage solution, then normal LAN connection speeds are available and the full suite of BlackPearl products with varying throughput are available.
With the BlackPearl’s product family, organizations will find the perfect fit for their workflow.
- BlackPearl V Series up to 350 MB/s sustained throughput
- BlackPearl S Series up to 850 MB/s sustained throughput
- BlackPearl P Series up to 3 GB/s sustained throughput
- BlackPearl X Series up to 10 GB/s sustained throughput
Protecting data is the primary goal for a storage system. With BlackPearl, there are many ways to increase protection and a few ways to also add High Availability (HA). Using HA can help overcome any temporary issues, outages, or maintenance required either on one copy of the data or a subset of the overall storage system. One way to greatly increase protection and create higher availability is to have two copies of data in two locations. With one copy already in the cloud, BlackPearl can seamlessly add another copy locally at any point by updating the data policy to create the onsite copy. The onsite copy could be disk or tape. And in the event that the local copy is unavailable, the data in the cloud is still accessible through the BlackPearl. When BlackPearl is storing data in a S3 cloud target, using the entire file option, the cloud data is also available directly for read-only access, without having to go through BlackPearl itself.