Cohesity debuts file-tiering storage space saver

Cohesity has announced a way of migrating files directly to its secondary data storage platform.

The company’s SmartFiles product extracts files from NAS systems and imports or tiers them into the Cohesity DataPlatform (CDP), leaving more space for primary files on the source filers. 

The goal is to stop the main filers getting clogged up with old, less-frequently accessed files. In CDP, files are deduplicated, compressed, and small file optimisation is applied. This provides more storage space which improves total cost of ownership.

A spokesperson said: “Cohesity DataPlatform is a software platform that provides the ability to create file shares that can be accessed via NFS or SMB/CIFS protocols. SmartFiles is a new feature within DataPlatform that goes beyond scale-out NAS. Backup customers want to use the same platform for data protection as they do for files and object services. We’re giving them that option today. “

David Noy, product management VP at Cohesity, gave out a prepared quote: “It is the first unstructured data solution that bring apps to the data, giving customers the ability to easily run antivirus, file audit, and content search natively on the platform.”

According to Cohesity, such apps cannot run on traditional NAS systems.

SmartFiles “includes multi tier data management and the ability to run file specific Cohesity Marketplace apps directly on the Cohesity DataPlatform… It automatically tiers cold data, be that files or objects, and it is moved by policy to a cost-effective storage tier, or to the cloud.”

This is a three-tier set up with primary files on the NAS; secondary or less frequently accessed files on Cohesity; and rarely accessed files in a cloud archive. 

Files stored in CDP are accessed via NFS, SMB, or as objects, via S3, with unified permissions across Windows and Linux. They can be found through the Helios search facility which looks across multiple sites and Cohesity instances in AWS and Azure.

A Cohesity spokesperson said objects could not be imported into SmartFiles as it is a “software solution that resides within Cohesity DataPlatform, software which runs on HPE, Cisco appliances and Cohesity’s own C6000 series appliance. Objects can, however, be imported into DataPlatform using S3 compatible REST APIs, and stored there.”

A Cohesity YouTube video, ‘SmartFiles: File Stubbing and Symlinks, suggests stubs are left behind when files move off the primary NAS. 

SmartFiles Youtube video

Until this launch, files would move onto CDP via its backup process, leaving source files untouched. With SmartFiles, Cohesity enables direct migration of old files from the NAS boxes into its scale-out, clustered system.

Files are selected for migration by age of last access, size and other parameters with these set as policies and a file migration process run at set times. Source filers include NetApp, Isilon and Pure Storage.

SmartFiles is available now for Cohesity DataPlatform customers. Pricing is not revealed.


File lifecycle management products include Komprise’s  Intelligent Data Management, Spectra Logic’s recently announced StorCycle and Data Dynamics’ long-established StorageX.

Komprise uses symbolic links so that file access by users and applications still works and recently announced an analytics function. StorCycle was announced last month and so is new. Spectra pitches the software as affordable file management thats store files on Spectra Logic’s own Black Pearl and other systems.

StorageX is a mature product that’s 16 years-old and used by 26 of the Fortune 100.