Multi-node active archive for high availability and massive scalability

THE CHALLENGES

For many industries High Availability is critical to business operations. In addition, some organizations that rely on “just-in-time” data recall need active archive content to be available when needed. In the High Performance Computing world massively scalable archives, with capacities into exabytes, are becoming more common place. These environments require tens or hundreds of tape drives and thousands of tape media to store and retrieve massive datasets in the shortest period of time. This type of Active Archive must be accessible through common file interfaces such as SMB and NFS but also through S3 cloud interface, as this pseudo-standard becomes more mainstream.

THE SOLUTION

QStar Technologies has created a new multi-node software solution which includes global namespace, high availability, load balancing and fast access to extremely large tape libraries and other archive technologies, such as disk, optical, cloud or object storage. Global ArchiveSpace™ (GAS) software uses a minimum of three computer nodes in a cluster to create one or many file systems each with a Global Namespace. The GAS software product is built on the well established QStar Archive Manager, and allows the utilization of large tape libraries supporting the numbers of tape drives beyond capabilities of a single node. Every node can access any tape media and use any tape drive to read or write data. GAS can replicate content for data protection to same or different archive technologies, and present a unified view of the archived data through SMB or NFS file systems and / or S3 cloud interfaces.

GAS network

REMOVES BOTTLENECKS

The user application(s) are accessing the file system or bucket through many nodes of the GAS domain. Depending on the access protocol, the load can be automatically balanced between GAS domain nodes (supported by S3, HTTP/HTTPS protocols) or dedicated to a particular node with IP failover support (NFS, SMB). The files in the aggregated file system may be accessed from any GAS domain node. If any node in the domain does not own the file it will be requested through the back-end network from the owner node and delivered to the user.

SIMPLE INSTALLATION AND SCALABILITY

The GAS software may be initially installed on three computer nodes, running Windows or Linux operating systems and additional nodes added for improved performance and/or capacity to a maximum of 64 nodes.

MULTIPLE OPTIONS FOR DATA PROTECTION

For data protection, mirroring or replication options are available. For environments with a single tape library identical media can be created through mirroring and the duplicate set exported as an air-gapped copy. For environments with two or more tape libraries or who wish to use other archive technologies (public or private cloud), synchronous replication is used to store the same data to up to 4 destinations.

FAST DATA ACCESSIBILITY

Multi-drive option allows data to be written to multiple tape drives, allowing significant performance improvements over single tape drive writes, but without the complexities of RAIT. Data can be written in a round-robin method where all media needs to be read, or based on a subdirectory location, where perhaps, only one media need be read. This allows fast time to data as fewer tape media loads are required.

QStar Global ArchiveSpace Software High Availability / High Scalability

GAS QSTAR
Platform compatibilityWindows or Linux Server from any Manufacturer (HPE, Dell, Super Micro etc)
Protocols SupportedFront-end Access through: SMB, NFS, S3, HTTP, FTP
Hardware supportAll archival storage providers of LTO and Proprietary Tape, Optical, Disk, Object Storage and Cloud Storage
Software supportQStar software integrates transparently with High Performance Computing environments and data migration software
Customer Support ServicesFull range of maintenance programs, customer support services and training
available worldwide

Related Solutions For Network & Data Migration

QStar Storage Reporter lets you perform detailed analysis of data composition in the existing storage infrastructure, provides key statistics on existing storage infrastructures without interrupting business operations. Storage Reporter will take just a few hours to perform an assessment of storage rather than the weeks normally required to carry out such a task. Storage Reporter is simple to install and run. Results of the scan are stored in a database, allowing many reports, like the ones below, to be generated without the need to rescan each time. QStar Storage Reporter means that storage infrastructure optimization is really just a click away. Key report formats are conveniently pre-configured and results can be displayed graphically or non-graphically (table format). Custom reports can also be created, as needed. Any report can be exported as a txt or xml file, by selecting the Export button. Once exported, the file can be opened using MS Excel.  Running Simulated Reports is a way of determining how the storage would look after a migration has taken place in order to create a simulated report a policy must be created.

QStar LTFS as NAS architecture virtualizes a Tape Library, effectively converting it into network-attached storage – NAS for sharing with multiple users and applications. The solution supports common networking protocols (SMB and NFS) plus S3 compatible API commands and is integrated on either a Windows or Linux server. Files that are stored in a LTFS as NAS environment are retrieved in the same manner as the native operating system, even though the data is actually stored in a Tape Library. Not only do users not realize that the volume (file system) they are accessing was created on tape and not on disk, but, through a sophisticated cache architecture, the read/write data activity is managed so effectively, that performance is comparable to a NAS device. Transparency is such that the architecture is also supported by virtual machine (VM) environments, even though the VM environment is not designed to support tape drives; existing applications installed in a VM can access the Tape as NAS architecture just like a standard NAS disk. Data can be accessed transparently over the network.