Open storage options are gaining momentum in the enterprise, and SwiftStack, a Seagate Cloud Builder Alliance partner, is bullish on the prospects of open source software for helping businesses build cost-effective, scalable infrastructure. More specifically, OpenStack is becoming an increasingly important solution for simulating the scope and flexibility of the public cloud even within private and hybrid environments.

SwiftStack is currently a core contributor to OpenStack, and the company foresees growing demand for object storage throughout 2014. Legacy file systems and storage arrays are increasingly unsuited for complex application workloads, meaning that many companies need to move fast in modernizing infrastructure for the new landscape. Open source technologies provide a good way forward since they can be modified for particular requirements and built well even under tight budgetary constraints.

“Once dismissed by their proprietary competitors as ‘immature,’ open source operating systems, middleware, application frameworks, and databases are now standards in enterprise and Web infrastructure,” stated SwiftStack chief operating officer Anders Tjernlund, according to SiliconANGLE. “[T]he open source model has so completely and fundamentally transformed the infrastructure tier in the data center that not many proprietary infrastructure platform technologies have a sustainable advantage any longer. That same transformation is now changing the storage tier, one organization at a time.”

By deploying software-defined solutions, IT departments can reduce the costs of hardware procurement. Open source software can run on almost anything, including industry-standard appliances. Moreover, these configurations provide viable alternatives to public platforms like Amazon Web Services, since solutions such as OpenStack Swift can operate like the famously scalable Amazon S3.

SwiftStack estimated that 1 trillion objects were uploaded to Amazon S3 during ten months in 2013, demonstrating the surging demand for object storage. Enterprises can set up flexible, cost-effective infrastructure and cloud storage solutions by abstracting the management of data into open source software.

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