CTERA and Backblaze partner on cloud file services

CTERA is hooking its edge filers up to Backblaze’s object store in the cloud to give users file access and collaboration services, claiming it makes NAS filers redundant.

CTERA provides distributed file-based unstructured data management services using local cache systems or edge filers, connected to a central object store. IBM COS File Access is a rebranded version of the CTERA file system using IBM’s Cloud Object Storage as its central repository. HPE makes CTERA services available via GreenLake, building on CTERA’s integration with the Nimble dHCI and SimpliVity HCI products. Now CTERA is repeating these kind of deals with Backblaze, using its B2 S3-based cloud object storage.

Oded Nagel, chief strategy officer at CTERA, said: “We’re seeing a massive shift from traditional NAS to cloud NAS, from edge to core access, as organizations evolve and expand.” He added that the Backblaze-CTERA partnership is a new cost-effective storage option for companies wanting to tier their data to the cloud for redundancy and collaboration.

CTERA graphic
CTERA graphic

Nilay Patel, VP of sales at Backblaze, was punchier: “You’ll never have to – or want to – upgrade your NAS again.”

Why? “If you’re tired of buying new equipment every three years, replacing hard drives, paying for maintenance or power or space in a datacenter, and all of the headaches of managing remote user access, then the CTERA and Backblaze partnership is perfect for you. The setup is incredibly easy and the immediate budget and staffing relief will give you resources to tackle new opportunities.”

The CTERA-Backblaze combination provides a global filesystem that can:

  • Expand the capacity of existing on-premises infrastructure
  • Retire legacy file servers and NAS devices altogether
  • Provide multi-site collaboration
  • Establish disaster recovery and business continuity plans
  • Back up data distributed globally in one centralized store, while maintaining instant (via CTERA’s Edge Filers) and reliable access (via Backblaze’s 99.9 percent uptime SLA)
  • Deliver pay-as-you-go cloud storage pricing for a quarter of the price of equivalent offerings (like AWS S3)

The CTERA-Backblaze combo is roughly equivalent to Nasuni’s cloud-based file services offering, and also to similar cloud-based distributed file access and collaboration services from Egnyte and Panzura.

However CTERA relies more on partners, like IBM, HPE, and now Backblaze, to provide a central storage repository around which it can cluster its edge filers. Effectively, CTERA’s edge filer/cloud services gateway provides a ring of edge filers around some kind of central core, which is supplied by a third party.

This limits the amount of integration possible between the edge systems and the partner cloud core systems because they come from different design centers, have different code bases, and were not  architected together.  But it means CTERA can sell in partnership with third parties like IBM, Backblaze, and HPE, whereas Nasuni, Egnyte, and Panzura are more limited in that regard.

In March last year CTERA said it was re-architecting its software to be cloud-native, and turning it into microservices.