Storage news ticker – February 9

Acronis released its “Acronis Cyberthreats Report, H2 2023: Alarming rise in cyberattacks, SMBs and MSPs in the crosshairs,” which says that AI-enhanced phishing affected more than 90 percent of organizations and contributed to a 222 percent surge in email attacks in the second half of 2023 compared to the same period of 2022.

Backblaze has a Powered by Backblaze program for ISVs and other partners to integrate Backblaze B2 cloud object storage into their products and services. A Custom Domains feature lets businesses serve content to end users from the web domain or URL of their choosing, with Backblaze managing the cloud storage on the backend. A Backblaze Partner API enables organizations to provision Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage accounts from within their own platform. The API also enables these companies to manage accounts, run reports, and create a bundled solution or managed service for a unified user experience. There’s more info in a Backblaze blog.

Nikkei Asia reports that chipmaker CXMT, based in Hefei, eastern China, is working to produce China’s first domestic high bandwidth memory (HBM) chips. It has received manufacturing and test equipment from US and Japanese suppliers suitable for this. American equipment suppliers Applied Materials and Lam Research had received licenses from Washington to ship chip production tools to the Chinese memory chipmaker since mid-2023. China is managing to do this despite US technology export sanctions in general. The chips are likely to be less advanced than Samsung, Micron, and SK hynix HBM chips but it is a starting point. 

Global DRAM storage market share

Analyst DCIG recognized the top five rising vendors offering multi-site file collaboration products. They include Hammerspace, LucidLink (Filespaces), Quobyte, Resilio Connect, and Tiger Technology (Tiger Bridge). It evaluated 18 suppliers and products, but did not include CTERA, Egnyte, Nasuni nor Panzura [see inclusion criteria below]. Get a copy of the report here. [DCIG has a separate global file management system report – see Panzura note below.]

Lakehouse supplier Dremio tells us February 12-16 is Love Data Week, an international celebration of data in all its forms to promote good research data management strategies. Yes, really. Its State of the Lakehouse 2024 report says:

  • Data lakehouse adoption is on the rise and cost savings are key.
    • 70 percent of respondents say more than half of all analytics will be on the data lakehouse within three years, and 86 percent reckon their organization plans to unify analytics data.
  • Technical professionals overwhelmingly agree AI is a national security priority (84 percent), noteworthy in light of the recent US executive  order on AI.
  • 42 percent moved from a cloud data warehouse to the data lakehouse. Top reasons for the shift were cost efficiency and ease of use.
  • 81 percent of respondents are using a data lakehouse to support data scientists building and improving AI models and applications.

Privately-owned Data orchestrator Hammerspace said it had great momentum entering 2024. In 2023 it experienced:

  • A single customer deployment that exceeds 100 petabytes of capacity.   
  • 300-plus percent growth in sales pipeline.   
  • 650 percent year-over-year increase in the capacity under management in the Hammerspace Global Data Environment software.  
  • 65 percent year-over-year growth in signed channel ecosystem partners. 
  • Nearly doubled sales and marketing teams to meet increased market demand. 

Customers include Blue Origin, the National Science Foundation, Royal Caribbean Group, and Hyperscale large language model environments.

Cybersecurity supplier Index Engines reports a sharp increase in adoption of its AI-powered CyberSense software in several sectors targeted by ransomware. These include telecom (70 percent gain), insurance and finance (56 percent), IT services (50 percent), federal and state government (41 percent), and energy (38 percent).


The Japanese government is giving a ¥150 billion ($1 billion) subsidy to the Kioxia-Western Digital joint venture NAND manufacturing plants at Yokkaichi and Kitakami aimed at securing stable production of semiconductors in Japan. Previously, the joint venture manufacturing facility at Yokkaichi was approved to receive up to ¥92.9 billion in subsidies from the Japanese government in 2022.

Storage exec Abel Gordon
Abel Gordon

NVMe/TCP storage startup Lightbits Labs has promoted Chief System Architect Abel Gordon to CTO. He has been instrumental, we’re told, in designing its low-latency clustered block storage software, leveraging the NVMe over TCP protocol. Lightbits aims to consolidate its market presence and meet the burgeoning demand for advanced cloud storage solutions. Gordon’s was said to be instrumental in forging a technology alliance with Microsoft. This alliance resulted in the introduction of Lightbits on Azure Managed Application marketplace, including solutions for Azure VMware Solution (AVS), Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS), and Oracle on Azure.

LucidLink, which supplies filespace technology that is designed to give instant access to data and real-time collaboration for the world’s creative companies, has completed its Systems and Organization Controls (SOC 2), Type II audit, and has the TPN Blue Shield certification by the Trusted Partner Network (TPN). Developed by the American Institute of Chartered Public Accountants (AICPA), SOC 2 is a rigorous compliance framework designed to ensure the effectiveness of a company’s security policies and procedures.

San Francisco startup Mechanical Orchard has raised $24 million in a Series A funding round, led by Emergence Capital. It uses iterative, AI-enhanced, and reverse engineering approaches to move large enterprises off mainframe systems and into the cloud. It gives CIOs and CTOs better visibility and control over the process, we’re told, while ensuring critical systems stay online. Founder and CEO Rob Mee also started software development consulting firm Pivotal Labs.

Cloud file services supplier Panzura says its CloudFS global file management system has been named in the DCIG 2024-25 Top Five Enterprise Cloud-based NAS Consolidation Solutions report.

Peer Software announced Chen Moore and Associates (CMA) is using Peer Software’s Global File Service (PeerGFS) to simplify file management and increase productivity for distributed teams. PeerGFS provides Chen Moore’s team, including many CAD users, with fast, local access to shared project files.

SSD controller supplier Phison is making specialized SSDs for video surveillance storage, saying HDDs speed performance has gradually become insufficient to meet the demands of high-resolution video recording. HDDs have high failure rates, power consumption, and noise issues. The mid-high-range S12DI and cost-effective S17T SSD drives have:

  • Sustained Write Performance of 500 MBps to prevent dropped frames. 
  • Power Loss Protection (PLP) to ensure data is effectively preserved in the event of a power outage.
  • Reliability and durability to support continuous intensive data writing for extended periods, such as 24 hours. 
  • Up to 7.68 TB capacity and a three-year warranty. 

Check out a sales brochure here.

Quantum has sponsored an IDC brief, “Data Deluge: Why Every Enterprise Needs a Cold Storage Strategy,” for insight and guidance to develop cost-effective cold storage strategies in the areas of long-term data retention, cloud data security and compliance, and data migration and management. Get access to it here.

Rakuten Symphony announced the full-scale commercial launch of Rakuten Drive, a file storage cloud service, in Japan. It’s already available in Korea. Rakuten Drive provides file storage cloud services for both individual and enterprise customers that the company says allows users to send large files quickly and offer secure, intuitive file storage and sharing in the cloud. It is introducing the ability to view and edit in real time documents, decks, spreadsheets using the web version of Microsoft 365 productivity apps like Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. The consumer-facing version of the service has been integrated with Rakuten ID – a shared ID that allows Rakuten members to access multiple services – making it possible for the 100 million Rakuten members in Japan to use the service with their existing Rakuten ID.

SK hynix plans to commence mass production of its HBM3E chips within the first half of 2024, with 8-stack sampling and 6-stack having 1.2 TBps bandwidth (1.2 TBps/stack). GenAI training is driving a need for more memory for GPU processors. Its HBM4 technology, with peak stack bandwidth of >1.5 TBps, is set for chip sampling in 2025 and mass production in 2026.

SK hynix has established a roadmap to actively use recycled and renewable materials in production. It aims to raise the proportion of recycled materials used in the products currently manufactured by the company to 25 percent by 2025 and more than 30 percent (based on weight) by 2030. It will start with essential metals for semiconductor production such as copper, tin, and gold, and replace them with recycled materials.

Business Korea reports that SK hynix is developing 2.5D fan-out packaging for its next generation of DRAM. Two DRAM chips are arranged horizontally with no substrate underneath them, making them thinner. They are combined as a single and thinner chip. Fan-out wafer level packaging has been used by TSMC and Samsung for smartphone application processors. SK hynix reckons fan-out packaging can reduce costs by avoiding the Through-Silicon Via (TSV) process and increasing the number of input/output (I/O) interfaces. The company supplied special DRAM for the “R1” computation unit installed in Apple’s new AR device Vision Pro headset.

Scalable GPU data analytics platform SQream announced an integration with Dataiku, which supplies a scalable data science and machine learning (ML) product. Users can now use SQream’s analytics capabilities within the flexible and governed Dataiku environment, enabling users to explore, prepare, and transform large datasets. 

Synology has started offering its cloud file transfer service, C2 Transfer, for free. C2 Transfer is designed for individuals and businesses to streamline the sharing of large files while ensuring data security, we’re told. C2 Transfer simplifies and secures the sharing of sensitive information within teams. Following the free plan’s introduction in December 2023, Synology says C2 Transfer experienced a fourfold increase in total file transfer and request tasks, alongside a 105 percent growth in user numbers from December 2022 to December 2023. 

Veeam Software has been named Alliance Partner of the Year by S3 cloud storage provider Wasabi Technologies.

Western Digital notified the SEC that it’s unable to file the calendar Q4 2023 quarterly 10-Q report because of recording errors relating to its equity interest in flash ventures in Japan. This is because of differences between Japanese and US GAAP accounting principles for lease-related transactions. It needs additional time to correct the errors. Due to this, WD expects to make corrections to the preliminary financial results for the three and six months ended December 29, 2023, and to the financial statements for the three-month and six-month periods ended December 30, 2022, when the company files its 10-Q form. Wells Fargo analyst Aaron Rakers said: “The differences show up in the equity in earnings for these entities recognized by the company in Other Income & Expenses (OI&E) and a cumulative understatement of the carrying value of the company’s equity investment in Flash Ventures.” 

PNY is supplying hardware for VAST Data.

Edge cloud provider Zadara has completed Australia’s Information Security Registered Assessors Program (IRAP) process. The assessment accompanies the expansion of Zadara’s Edge Cloud, with a new availability zone now online in Melbourne and more coming. Zadara has fully managed compute (EC2 compatible), storage (block, file, object), and network systems hosted in a global point-of-presence (POP) network, called an edge cloud. It can also be run on AWS, Azure, GCP, and Oracle public clouds, or in a customer’s own datacenters. Zadara adds this IRAP assessment to its list of existing certifications including SOC 1, SOC 2, ISO27001, ISO27017, ISO27018, ISO27701, HIPAA, and EU GDPR.

Software RAID supplier Xinnor said the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), one of the leading research institutions in Germany, has tested Xinnor’s xiRAID as a high-performance cache for its archival storage platform at HPSS (High Performance Storage System). After running several tests of other HDD and SSD setups, KIT has turned to a combination of xiRAID and NVMe drives as the most efficient solution that hugely outperforms other options.