The newest player on the storage scene is Exablox, which emerged from stealth mode today with $22.5 million in funding from Norwest Venture Partners (NVP), Doll Capital Management (DCM) and US Venture Partners (USVP).
Exablox promises to provide turn-key enterprise-grade object-based storage and data protection in less than five minutes. It is targeting resource-constrained organizations with unstructured and backup/recovery storage problems with its solution sold exclusively through the channel. The company helps deliver scale-out network attached storage (NAS) built on object-based storage through an appliance called OneBlox, and its OneSystem management software.
The Mountain View, Calif. company looks to solve businesses’ common storage pain points: complicated installation, cumbersome storage management, lack of data security and forklift upgrades.
Exablox is also upfront with pricing; pricing begins at under $10,000 for a 32TB solution and under $40,000 for a replicated four-node 64TB disaster recovery solution. The company’s been working with beta customers, but is now open to select customers.
Two Years in Development
“We spent the last two years working with customers and partners to build a next-generation storage solution that addresses the pain points they're confronting as they deal with the explosion of unstructured data,” said Douglas Brockett, CEO of Exablox. “We're tearing down the technology barriers that have forced customers into choosing between the features they need and the solutions they can afford. At Exablox, we think every customer should feel their data storage is safe and scalable.”
OneBlox is a scale-out object-based appliance that is expandable and uses flexible media, whether it be cost effective SATA drives or performance boosting SAS or SSD. It is accessible with Server Message Block (SMB) and Common Internet File System (CIFS) network protocols. Additional OneBlox appliances can be added automatically, enabling dynamic scalability rather than forklift upgrades.
The storage architecture doesn’t limit the choice of drive types or capacities, the company says, allowing organizations the ability to mix and match drive technologies and sizes. The ability to add a new drive at any time offers the potential for just-in-time storage capacity, dynamically pooled within the global file system. OneBlox includes inline deduplication for primary and disk-based backup and recovery storage, to minimize waste and maximize storage utilization.
The OneSystem storage management offering is cloud-based, so there’s nothing to install and no command line. A drag-and-drop interface offers site-to-site replication and configuration, allowing service providers the ability to proactively manage and monitor all of the storage resources across companies and geographies.
"If storage admins try to solve the challenges associated with managing unstructured data with the same technology they’ve been using, insanity may certainly be in their future because things just won’t get better," said Terri McClure, Senior Analyst of Enterprise Strategy Group. "Vendors like Exablox are out there with innovative technology that is designed for the unstructured data challenges IT faces today, not the challenges faced 20 or 30 years ago."