Distributed filesystems

Barry Roberts blr at robertsr.us
Sat Dec 17 13:51:29 MST 2005

On Sat, Dec 17, 2005 at 01:06:55AM -0700, Shane Hathaway wrote:
> Indeed.  But to my bosses, Coraid looks like an ant ready to be squished 
> because Coraid has a low employee count.  They prefer IBM, HP, EMC, 
> NetApp, etc. because the big guys can't be killed off as easily.  I can 
> see the logic, because we'll have to live with our solution for a long time.
> But they fail to understand the power and longevity of open systems. 

In this case, so do I.

> AFAICT Coraid's systems are 100% open, both hardware and software, so 
> we'd always have an upgrade path regardless of the fate of any vendor. 
> For a lot of business folks, that's a totally different way of thinking.

If there are other vendors of AoE hardware (there weren't last year
when I checked), then forgive my ignorance.  But afaik, there aren't,
and your previous statement makes no sense to me.

If Coraid gets sued and goes under, who's going to repair failed
Coraid hardware?  Sure, the protocol is open, and the drivers are open
source, and the drives are industry standard.  But that doesn't make a
bit of difference if you've got a few thousand AoE controllers, no
remaining manufacturer, and they start failing.

Single source hardware is risky no matter how much they wave the "Open
Standards" flag.  If AoE catches on and there are multiple, competing
sources of the hardware, I have several applications where I would
love to use it.  Until then, it's nowhere near open enough for me, and
I'm not a PHB.


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