In part 1 of this series, I provided a basic overview of the OpenStack block storage service project, called Cinder, and highlighted how it is implemented with commodity hardware as well as third-party storage solutions. In this post, I will review some reference architectures and design principles for building OpenStack Cinder solutions using both commodity-off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware as well as third-party storage solutions. The content is based on experience gathered from various OpenStack-powered Rackspace Private Cloud (RPC) deployments.
One OpenStack project that seems to get less attention than others, such as Nova and Neutron, is the Cinder block storage service project. I though it may be helpful if I wrote a series of blog posts that dive into the Cinder project. I’ll start, in this post, by walking through the basics. But first, let’s put Cinder in proper context by taking a look at the available storage options in OpenStack.
To call Object Storage an emerging technology would be inaccurate. There are already trillions of objects and hundreds (perhaps thousands) of petabytes of data in Object Storage public clouds, such as Rackspace Cloud Files and Amazon S3, in private clouds based on the OpenStack Object Storage platform Swift, and other platforms such as EMC’s Atmos.
The verdict is in: distributed object stores like Rackspace Cloud Files, based on OpenStack Swift, are winning the battle for scale-out storage. Anyone can now deploy petabyte-scale storage on inexpensive commodity hardware with data-durability and availability guarantees that far exceed RAID based setups, at a fraction of the cost.
While patience may be a virtue, no one likes to wait when it comes loading a website. Each second that ticks away while your page loads results in a 16 percent decrease in customer satisfaction. Fortunately, whether you are hosting on a virtualized or physical server, you can leverage the Content Delivery Network (CDN) that powers our Cloud Files product to load your page much faster.
A few months ago we had the opportunity to take on a project that would bring Rackspace Cloud Files together with SharePoint web sites. This would be in the form of a SharePoint 2013 app where you would have the ability to log into your Rackspace Cloud account and have access to your cloud storage. Since file collaboration and sharing is in high demand, we also wanted to give you the ability to share files stored in your cloud storage with other people — regardless of whether or not that person has access to the SharePoint site. This would be a step toward facilitating collaboration between SharePoint and non-SharePoint users.
We frequently update our products, and Cloud Files is no exception. In this series of technical posts, we’ll dig into how developers using the Cloud Files API can leverage new capabilities in Rackspace Cloud Files.