Our clusters are tailored to each users needs but the off the shelf storage options were rigid and limiting. A server with a large array of disks would be able to adapt to most any use but requires expertise and time to adapt to a changing environment. Dedicated storage systems were simple to manage but limited by either performance or protocol support. Advanced Clustering's Flexible Storage Server provides a simple web based interface without limiting the user to one protocol.
The flexibility of the FSS starts with network support. Two ports of gigabit Ethernet come standard with the ability to add up to four additional gigabit ports. For higher throughput 10 gigabit Ethernet or InfiniBand can be added. This feature allows heterogenous clusters, those with some InfiniBand or 10 gigabit Ethernet nodes, to access the shared filesystems using the best available interconnect. The optional interconnects are easily added allowing the FSS to grow and change with the netowrk infrastructure of a cluster.
Choosing between iSCSI storage and NAS storage is no longer needed as the FSS does both. Each volume is created as an iSCSI target, accessible as a block device, or a shared NAS filesystem accessible via SMB, NFS, AFP, or FTP.
Adding space is very simple with the FSS. Once all 16 drive slots are populated on the Storage Server expansion chassis, up to seven of them, can be added with each expansion chassis adding 16 additional drive slots. All in all, 128 drives can be connected to one FSS. As drive space is added, existing volumes can be expanded to exploit the new storage.
Data storage often takes a back seat to the more glamorous processing power and as a result is often lower on the budget priority. The flexibility and expansion of the FSS allows the storage system to be easily grown and adapted as a cluster, or it's workload, changes.
For a full rundown on the features provided please the visit the Flexible Storage Server page on our website.