Hi John –
there are many commercially available NAS systems that are dirt cheap like QNAP and Synology that currently offer tiering. For a small workgroup (under 20 users, and typically 6 – 10 users), I don’t see the need for a complex system like this. Today, from what I observe, the demand for a shared storage environment is one that is easy for the customer to use, and very inexpensive. Drive arrays today are very inexpensive. To create a storage pool is commonplace, yet I continue to use static volumes. A single volume today with a 16 bay RAID enclosure can be 160 TB before RAID, and using inexpensive 8TB drives still allows this to be 128 TB. Connecting 5 – 20 users to a commercially available 10G NAS system (which 40G cards from Mellanox are already supported) is a no brainer, and does not require complex services.
And as for storage backup to a cloud site – the reality of putting 500 TB on a cloud site for your company is just completely unrealistic, even though many companies like Amazon are more than anxious to get your business to do so.
Bottom line – this is video production, not Verizon, or Chase Manhattan bank. Keep it simple.
There are certainly plenty of productions that need 20 or less accessing a storage system. We are not one of them so single chassis NAS systems won’t cut it.
You say it’s complicated but compared to SAN and even NAS with various server heads, RAID controllers, expansion chassises, and failover the Microsoft Storage Spaces looks far simpler. Windows Server 2016 boxes stuffed with SSD and HDD and ethernet to a switch… done! Like I said, I’m no fan of Windows and would much prefer a Unix/Linux based system but with SMB3 seemingly taking the lead a Windows based storage system makes some sense. Building a system with SuperMicro components would be dirt cheap.
A true scale out system that adds iops and capacity with each server is what I’m looking for. The ability to replace old storage without migration is also a big plus.
Bob, have you looked into the AWS Storage Gateway Virtual appliance? The throughput there (when using compression) seems decent with something like Google gig service because it’s iSCSI. Of course, fast throughput demands CPU cores, SSDs, and RAM like any server.