US Signal Expands Storage-as-a-Service (STaaS) Infrastructure with SoftIron

Immediately increasing its storage capacity by over a petabyte, US Signal has implemented SoftIron’s Ceph-based HyperDrive storage appliances for its Storage-as-a-Service (STaaS) offering and is being facilitated by SoftIron with a no-downtime migration across multiple distributed data center sites in four Midwest states including Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

The US Signal storage infrastructure expansion is being driven by the company’s need to scale its infrastructure due to increasing client demand. Having already established a Ceph software-defined storage architecture in 2012, the company took the opportunity to re-evaluate its incumbent solution against evolving requirements.

These needs included the necessity for cluster administration across several unconnected locations and seamless integration with service pricing, as well as strict Cloud Service Level Agreement (SLA) requirements and resource limitations (including skills, space and power). Because clients were already using the new capacity, it was essential that there be no disruption throughout the upgrade. For this particular expansion, the skills of SoftIron and their Ceph-based HyperDrive solution proved to be a perfect match.

“The strategic focus for this project was to ensure a truly future-proofed and seamless growth plan for US Signal, providing the best outcomes for both our business and our customers,” said Derrin Rummelt, Executive Vice President of Engineering at US Signal. “We chose open source Ceph as a foundational building block for our needs early on because of its innate power and capability. Ceph’s virtually infinite scalable nature combined with an uncompromising feature set made it a natural fit for our company, which provides world-class services in a highly competitive, mission-critical environment. SoftIron quickly demonstrated its deep understanding of complex storage environments, and how to maximize Ceph to provide the best of its wide-ranging feature set. They’ve delivered value over and above the hardware and software, providing expert guidance and support as we execute on this project together.”

Storage Equipment and Expertise

Photo Phil Straw, CEO of SoftIron
Ceph provides organizations with all the robust features needed for always-on enterprise operation and delivering all the value that people expect in a world-class open-source solution,” said Phil Straw, CEO of SoftIron.

SoftIron’s expertise and HyperDrive storage equipment will be utilized in the storage infrastructure expansion by US Signal, further validating open-source Ceph’s enterprise-grade position as a software-defined storage technology that offers object, block, and file storage in a distributed, no single point of failure architecture. In contrast to typical commodity appliances, SoftIron’s HyperDrive storage appliances are developed utilizing SoftIron’s ‘task-specific’ methodology to enhance Ceph performance and usefulness (COTS).

Using SoftIron, hardware design at the component level is optimized by tailoring it to meet the software’s requirements at the source code level. Instead of relying on commodity hardware, SoftIron creates appliances that are more energy efficient while also being greener because of this strategy.

“SoftIron continues to lower the bar for enterprises to adopt open source, and Ceph in particular, as a key part of their infrastructure strategy. Ceph provides organizations with all the robust features needed for always-on enterprise operation and delivering all the value that people expect in a world-class open-source solution,” said Phil Straw, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SoftIron.SoftIron has built the ultimate productization of Ceph in our HyperDrive storage appliances, simplifying the operations and life cycle experience with Storage Manager and making Ceph accessible for today’s enterprise workloads with Storage Router. Our goal is always to meet our client organizations and their infrastructure wherever they are, and work with them to maximize every aspect of performance and efficiency that both Ceph and HyperDrive, together, have to offer.”

Storage appliances of the SoftIron HyperDrive series range from high-value to high-performance and can be used in a proof-of-concept (POC) or purchased immediately. SoftIron provides traditional (CAPEX) and as-a-service (OPEX) alternatives for buying. Visit the SoftIron HyperDrive Storage website for additional details.