The VAST Data Universal Storage system is a highly scalable, high performance file and object storage solution. VAST positions itself as “Universal Storage” meaning it can be used as a singular solution for a variety of needs within a single tier.
Initially, VAST Data sold Universal Storage as a hardware solution with software in a perpetual license. In early 2021, VAST pivoted their model to be a software only solution sold as a subscription called Gemini, with certified hardware provided by Avnet. While VAST is no longer directly selling integrated appliances, the Gemini subscription model allows customers to purchase software licenses from VAST, and hardware which is integrated by the manufacturer and delivered to the customer as an appliance.
The VAST Data storage system utilizes a disaggregated shared everything scale out architecture, called DASE. This architecture separates the compute and storage allowing each to scale individually as needed up to Exabyte scale. VAST claims scalability of up to 1,000 storage enclosures and 10,000 servers.
The use of QLC flash requires a fundamentally different approach to storage compared to more typical all flash or hybrid SSD and HDD systems. QLC flash provides high density storage, but lower endurance. The VAST system overcomes this issue by using storage class memory (SCM) as a large persistent buffer before writing to QLC in large blocks. VAST also uses predictive analytics to group data by predicted life expectancy. This approach allows the system to benefit from QLC’s dense storage, without suffering from the reduced endurance.
The systems use of SCM is also a key differentiator for the product. SCM technology provides nearDRAM performance, while maintaining persistence. VAST leverages this technology to create a large write buffer to optimize write latency, before writing data to QLC devices. The SCM is also used as a metadata store.
The VAST Data Universal Storage solution is available as a software offering from VAST Data with hardware supplied at cost from a partner through its Gemini offering. VAST’s file storage is also available as a separate offering available from HPE utilizing HPE’s Alletra Storage MP platform.
VAST Data Universal Storage Product Review Includes:
- Architecture Deployment
- EvaluScale Product Review Methodology
- Evaluator Group’s Opinion
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