Emerging from stealth mode Tuesday, Andreesen Horowitz-backed startup Coho Data unveiled and SDN storage appliance called Coho DataStream, which packages key elements of public cloud - including pay-as-you-grow economics, rapid scaling and high resiliency - into an on-premise solution. Coho offers a software defined storage (SDN) model that combines commodity hardware with software that's tuned for the latest high performance PCIe flash technologies.
"As we saw with Nicira and networking, Coho Data is shaking up how storage has traditionally been delivered; instead of focusing on the storage hardware, it's all about using software to extract the best performance from commodity hardware," said Andreessen Horowitz General Partner Peter Levine explained. "I'm thrilled to work with the founding team, comprised of veteran product visionaries and architects, to usher in storage for the cloud generation."
Coho Data's founders built the DataStream to address underlying scale and performance limitations in traditional storage architectures. It starts with a cloud-inspired storage model that combines scale-out software on commodity hardware, and adds a storage stack optimized for PCIe flash and the use of software-defined networking (SDN) to embed storage intelligence in the network.
Redesigning the Storage Stack
"Even as new advancements in flash memory have come on the scene, the storage industry has remained stagnant, relying on a 30-year-old architecture to deliver performance and accessibility," said Ramana Jonnala, CEO of Coho Data. "By redesigning the storage stack itself, we have taken the best ideas from public cloud-based architectures and improved them for demanding on-premise datacenters. DataStream uses sophisticated software to take advantage of flash in such a way that it can be used for all applications, not just the top tier ones. Whether data is in the public or private cloud, it should be on a storage architecture that can meet the scalability and performance today's cloud generation companies need, at the pricing they demand."
The Coho DataStream provides up to 180K IOPS in every 2U appliance, that can be scaled linearly for 2x the price/performance of all-flash arrays. Starting at $2.50/GB, before deduplication and compression, businesses can start with a single Coho DataStream chassis of 40TB and grow incrementally as needed without the big upfront expenditure of traditional arrays. The Coho DataStream product line is currently installed in large enterprise private cloud environments and will be generally available later this year.
"Coho Data is delivering a promising and highly innovative approach that enables enterprises to provide internal storage services in powerful, scalable, and efficient ways that challenge the notion that the public cloud is the only route to economy and flexibility," said Mark Peters, Senior Analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group. "ESG Lab's testing showed that Coho Data users will not only get predictable performance as they grow their environment using the product's pay-as-you-grow model, but will also enjoy eliminating many of the configuration and management challenges that are endemic with traditional monolithic storage."