Hammerspace expands Global Data Environment with archival tape system support

Hammerspace has added archival tape system support to its Global Data Environment (GDE). This parallel file system covers data in globally distributed and disparate sites and enables it to be located, orchestrated, and accessed as if it were local.

Remote data access uses Vcinity’s high-speed data-moving technology to bring distant data to users. The Hammerspace software supports and orchestrates data in file (NFS) and object storage using SSDs, disk drives, public cloud services, and now tape systems. It both provides access and lifecycle management, being capable of moving data between storage tiers to optimize for access speed and storage cost.

Eric Bassier, Hammerspace’s Senior Director of Solution Marketing, blogged: “Files stored on tape will now be visible in the Hammerspace global file system – the files appear as active data in the Global Data Environment along with data stored on any other type of storage.”

Hammerspace Global Data Environment diagram
Hammerspace Global Data Environment diagram

Archive data is stored on tape by archive management software, which is different from storing backups on tape. Backups are collections of files and updates in a single container or backup file. The backup file contents are only visible to the backup software and are component file copies, not the original active data. Archives, managed by archival software systems, are original files that have low access rates, and are accessed through archive software, which records and maintains their metadata.

Hammerspace SVP for Global Marketing Molly Presley told us: “We are currently working with tape software companies that present in S3 interface from the tape to Hammerspace as our initial entry to tape support in our Global Data Environment.”

Specifically, Hammerspace is working with three active archive suppliers – Grau Data, PoINT Software & Systems and QStar Technologies – to bring their archive data silos into its GDE’s ambit. It says that this makes data on tape always available and active, with the ability to support high-performance file access with any combination of existing or new storage platforms from any vendor without the need for proprietary clients.

“Inactive data is automatically stored and archived in the highly secure and long-lasting XtreemStore platform, accessible through the intuitive Hammerspace interface,” said David Cerf, Chief Data Evangelist for Grau Data. “This approach eliminates the need for costly and complex management of dedicated tape libraries.”

Sebastian Klee, Chief Marketing Officer at PoINT Software & Systems, said: “PoINT Archival Gateway is a flexible S3-to-tape solution that enables the integration of a highly cost and energy-efficient storage class into the Hammerspace software.”

Dave Thomson, SVP of Sales and Marketing at QStar Technologies, said: “The final resting place for data is archive storage, and for many, due to the extremely low total cost of ownership and massive scalability, organizations are choosing LTO tape libraries. QStar software makes archived data on tape quickly and easily accessible through an S3 interface/bucket. Together, we can help our current and future customers manage their data across multiple storage platforms, including tape as an active archive.”

GDE plus archive tape support provides:

  • Global access and control of data across all silos and locations
  • Scalable storage for large datasets
  • Strengthened governance, security, and compliance with tape’s inherent air-gap prevention of malware intrusion
  • Cost-effective long-term storage
  • Support for corporate Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) initiatives as storing inactive data on tape helps to reduce energy consumption and carbon footprint

We asked if Hammerspace will work with SpectraLogic and its StorCycle active archiving product that can place its archive data on disk, tape, or in the public cloud. Presley said: “Possibly, no agreement is in place, but we are very open to supporting Spectra software. With today’s announcement we can support Spectra tape libraries, or partitions of their libraries, under management of Grau, QStar or PoINT.”

She added: “We definitely expect to add additional tape software partners in the future.”

Find out more about the Hammerspace GDE in this white paper.