Understanding Object Based Storage

Object Based StorageObject based storage is increasingly being seen as a powerful alternative to the more common suite of IT solutions based around network attached storage. Some of the advantages inherent to an object based approach include a level of scalability that is for all practical purposes unlimited and less need to rely on high-speed infrastructure including ultra-fast processing. In addition, object based storage fits into the new Web 2.0 world because it can easily be accessed using standard internet protocols, which lessens the need to launch traditional commands related to storage inside a web-based world where they may not coordinate well.

Object based storage also allows small and medium businesses to establish and use custom metadata fields that can allow them to classify stored objects in much more sensible and business-friendly ways.

Perhaps the most important reason, however, behind the rise of object based storage as an increasingly popular paradigm is the fact that it is already in use as one of a set of powerful cloud solutions that underlie both private and public cloud computing. The social networking site Facebook uses object-based storage for items uploaded by users including image files and videos. Businesses are increasingly finding it useful as a way to expand their file-based storage archives because cost efficiencies are built into an object based approach.

What is object based storage?

Like many things in the computing world, the term ‘object based storage’ is sometimes misapplied. This can lead to confusion as to what an object based storage system truly is and does. The situation is also complicated by the fact that object storage systems may or may not apply the technology in a ‘pure’ manner. An object based storage system that can be considered pure will manage files as object that are identified by means of a unique identification code (an identifier) instead of through reference to a file path.

Objects in such a system are stored in a flat space instead of in a hierarchical system that involves levels. This makes it much simpler in some cases to locate the object needed; once the identifier is known, there is no need to navigate through multiple, in some circumstances dozens, of directories to reach the information desired.

For more in-depth information about the nature and purposes of object based storage, work with an IT consulting firm with expertise in this specialty and how it can be of benefit in your particular business circumstances.

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