Critical capabilities: Gartner rates Scality top of the heap in distributed file and object storage

Scality’s RING product has been awarded the highest and most consistent rankings in a Gartner report looking at distributed files systems and object storage.

Gartner’s gurus have written a Critical Capabilities report evaluating 17 products from 15 vendors in the distributed file systems and object storage area. Previously it has evaluated file systems and object storage products separately. The report authors assert that “distributed file systems and object storage are the most common solutions deployed by infrastructure teams to address the challenges with unstructured data.”

They write that: “vendors are increasingly investing in a single unstructured data storage platform for serving both file and object use cases,” and the feature sets are coming together.

Vendor products were evaluated against seven use cases: analytics, archiving, backup hybrid cloud storage, cloud-native applications, cloud IT operations, and commercial HPC. Scality CMO Paul Speciale blogs that “A Critical Capabilities document is a comparative analysis that scores competing products or services against a set of critical differentiators identified by Gartner.”

Bar charts are presented by the Gartnerites, separately ranking vendors for each use case. That makes it a little complex to compare the vendors across the use cases, so we took the Gartner scores and prepared an overall chart showing all the user case scores for each vendor in turn:

Blocks and Files chart prepared using Gartner data.

This chart tells us, first, that some vendors have limited applicability across the seven Gartner use cases — witness the missing bars for DDN, Nutanix, Pure Storage, Quantum and WekaIO. That suggests that their products have been developed specifically for either file or object storage and not for both.

Second, some vendors are lagging the leaders across the various use cases by what looks like large margins. If we take the 3.75 score line as a cut-off point, Quantum with its ActiveScale product gets the lowest scores, followed by Nutanix with its Unified Storage and then Dell with its ECS product. Red Hat with its Ceph technology is on the cut-off point.

Third, the differences amongst the high-scoring vendors are less clear-cut. We believe that Scality with its Ring product has the most consistent high scores across Gartner’s use cases, with Qumulo next. Scality has announced it has been ranked #1 in both Hybrid Cloud and Cloud-native Storage Use Cases, in the top three for Backup and Archive Use Cases, and tied for third pace in the Analytics Use Case.

Scality CMO Paul Speciale has written a blog about Gartner’s report and how it relates to Gartner’s Magic Quadrant. You can download a copy of this Gartner report from Scality’s website.

Footnote: Gartner, Critical Capabilities for Distributed File Systems and Object Storage, By Chandra Mukhyala, Julia Palmer, Jerry Rozeman, Jeff Vogel, Published 25 October 2021.