This week I had the pleasure of being one of 14 delegates at Storage Field Day 3, which is part of the Tech Field Day series. At these events that happen several times a year, vendors come and give two-hour presentations to the delegates. The vendors are usually announcing a new version of something or just telling you about their product, but in the case of Exablox, they announced their launch. It was pretty exciting to be part of this event. The guys from Exablox gave an awesome presentation full of technical goodies that I thought I’d share with TechRepublic readers.

Exablox consists of two basic things: OneBlox and OneSystem. OneBlox is the name of the actual appliance they’ve built from the ground up that uses the Common Internet File System (CIFS) and Server Message Block (SMB) protocols exclusively. These appliances are meant to be easily scaled out to about six nodes in a “ring” (see the video below for explanation). They have built-in replication, and new nodes are easily added and taken away from the cluster. OneSystem is what they’re calling the management system. OneSystem is completely Software as a Service (SaaS) based. This is a neat feature, as it addresses accessibility from outside the network and gives that easily managed “cloud” feel. It’s possible this could be problematic for several reasons, one of which is, what happens when the Internet goes down?

OneBlox can use SAS, SATA, and/or SSD drives and any combination therein. There are eight slots available to divvy up as you wish. The only caveat is that, no matter how you choose to do the storage, it is not optimized to use SSD instead of SAS or SATA automatically like some hybrid storage appliances; basically, you just get the capacity, and the data falls where it falls. This optimization could be on the roadmap, but that hasn’t been confirmed. All of this storage capacity is usable storage, as the OneBlox appliance also comes with 240 GB of SSD where the system data is stored.

Exablox seems like a great NAS solution at a great price. Check out the videos below to see Exablox’s entire presentation.

Introducing Exablox with Douglas Brocket, CEO

Tad Hunt, co-founder and CTO

OneBlox demo with Sean Derrington, Sr. Director of Products