In 2016, IDC’s research vice president for enterprise storage, Laura Dubois, gave a 4-minute rundown that explains why object storage is a topic of discussion in every data center these days. In a video titled “Data explosion drives need for object storage,” Dubois highlights numbers that are almost too large for the human imagination:
- There was an estimated 13 zetabytes of new data created, captured or replicated worldwide over the course of the last year.
- That’s the equivalent of 13 million petabytes.
- You could also think of this as 415 terabytes of new data per second.
- If you’re still having trouble grasping this amount of data, try thinking of it as enough to fill 3,000 of today’s hard disk drives every minute.
The data being created at this rapid clip includes structured data, but most of it is unstructured. By 2020, according to IDC, we’ll hit the 44 zetabytes mark, and about 80 percent of that data will be unstructured.
These are the numbers that tell the story of cloud object storage. We’re seeing absolutely unprecedented data growth, and IT teams are on a quest for flexible, scalable, easily manageable ways to preserve and protect that data. Adding to that challenge is the fact that extracting value from unstructured data depends on analytical capabilities that draw on a combination of storage, intelligence and computing analytics power. Businesses also are more likely than ever to want global, on-demand access to this information.
Dubois adds three other pertinent factors to her explanation of why object storage is the topic of the day.
- More regulations about data retention
- More ways to create and capture data through new devices and the Internet of Things (IoT)
- More appetite for information and services
With all of these trends in mind, it’s a great time to consider the benefits of IBM Cloud Object Storage. Formerly known as Cleversafe, IBM Cloud Object Storage is software-defined and hardware-aware single instance object storage that leverages commodity hardware to dramatically lower cost. It was developed for exabyte-scale deployment; many of our clients, who are already at more than 100 petabytes of unstructured storage capacity in production, rely on IBM’s cloud-object storage. It is geographically aware too, so data can be distributed not only within the datacenter, but across multiple facilities and all in a global namespace. Instead of creating multiple copies of their data and storing them in different systems, these companies can disperse, store and retrieve a single instance across a private storage cloud.
It’s easy to make a case for cloud object storage when you consider the benefits: scale-out capabilities, erasure-coding, no RAID sets, reliability, availability, lower total cost of ownership and many, many more.
Director of Cloud Services
Key Information Systems, Inc.