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Software-defined Storage

Today’s Storage Challenges

Traditional data storage infrastructure typically consists of clearly defined storage hardware combined with proprietary management software. This type of storage results in a monolithic, inflexible architecture that ties storage operations to a specific device or manufacturer and makes data migration and hardware replacement difficult.

When storage capacity runs out, physical hardware must be purchased and added. Data silos across multiple storage solutions lead to data fragmentation and a lack of holistic visibility of storage resources. As storage needs to scale, managing storage resources across technologies becomes more complex, requiring specialized skills and different tools.

Software-defined storage (SDS)

This is where SDS comes in - an abstraction layer that sits on top of the on-premise, private and public clouds that store your data to deliver a unified, flexible, hardware-independent storage pool for all your applications. Storage hardware can be easily upgraded and expanded with minimal disruption to operational procedures and limited capital investment.

With SDS, organizations are no longer forced to rely on proprietary infrastructure and can choose any vendor or hardware that meets their needs, avoiding vendor lock-in. Organizations more easily automate and orchestrate storage for greater flexibility, greater efficiency, and faster scalability.

How does Software-defined Storage work?

6 Major Benefits of Software-Defined Storage

SDS solutions run on standard x86-based storage hardware, eliminating dependence on vendor-specific storage solutions. Organizations gain more flexibility and more options for building their data storage infrastructure because they do not have to commit to a single vendor, but are instead free to use different vendors for capacity upgrades based on their current needs.

With an SDS solution, organizations can optimize their spend and maximize the value of their storage resources. SDS allows you to use low-cost storage equipment instead of more expensive proprietary solutions and integrate existing hardware to optimize storage resources and reduce capital expenditures.

Traditional data solutions are limited by the physical capacity of the storage devices used. Because SDS can manage both physical and cloud storage, it is easier to increase storage capacity to meet the needs of a new application or improve system performance. SDS also makes it easier to scale up by adding additional storage devices when existing storage devices have reached their maximum capacity.

SDS allows organizations to create a data storage solution that leverages a variety of data sources, including internal flash or disk storage, cloud storage, external disk systems, virtual servers, and object platforms. By networking all of the organization's data storage resources, you can eliminate data silos, improve access to data, and create a holistic view of data across the organization.

SDS enables organizations to move from "one-size-fits-all" storage to a more flexible solution. The right type of storage, hard drive, flash or cloud, can be assigned based on a specific workload or use case. SDS also gives organizations the flexibility to quickly and easily expand storage capacity in response to new business opportunities or challenges.

An SDS solution makes it easier for organizations to future-proof their data storage solutions. As technology evolves, you can keep up with the latest innovations in storage architecture without having to replace your entire existing storage infrastructure as it becomes outdated.

Transforming Storage in Key Industries

Software-defined storage (SDS) is a strategic approach to data storage that abstracts the management and provisioning of data from the underlying physical hardware, much like virtualization does for operating systems and applications. Various industries adopt SDS for its flexibility, scalability, and cost-effectiveness. Here are some of the industries that utilize SDS, along with explanations for their adoption and the benefits they reap:

Healthcare institutions use SDS to manage the massive amounts of patient data securely and efficiently.

  • SDS enables quick access to medical records, improving patient care and supporting advanced analytics for research.

  • The scalability of SDS allows for the accommodation of growing data from medical imaging and electronic health records.

Banks and financial firms implement SDS for its robust data protection and disaster recovery capabilities.

  • It provides the agility needed to respond to changing market conditions and regulatory requirements.

  • SDS's efficient data management supports high-speed transactions and real-time analytics for financial data.

Media companies use SDS to manage large digital content libraries and support high-definition media streaming.

  • It allows for the cost-effective scaling of storage in line with the production and archiving of media content.

  • SDS ensures high availability and accessibility of media assets for global distribution.

Educational institutions use SDS to store and manage educational materials, research data, and student records.

  • It supports remote learning environments with the ability to quickly access and distribute educational content.

  • SDS provides cost-effective storage solutions for budget-conscious schools and universities.

    Retailers leverage SDS to handle the surge of data from e-commerce platforms and customer interaction channels.

  • It offers the flexibility to scale during peak shopping seasons and sales events.

  • SDS helps in analyzing customer behavior and preferences, enhancing the shopping experience and personalization.

Manufacturers integrate SDS to handle data from sensors and automation systems within the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

  • It allows for real-time analysis of production data, improving efficiency and predictive maintenance.

  • SDS enables manufacturers to quickly adapt to changes in production demands and supply chain management.

Government agencies adopt SDS to consolidate data storage infrastructure and reduce costs.

  • It enhances data security and compliance with regulations, which is critical for public sector data.

  • The scalability of SDS is essential for handling varying types of data, from public records to surveillance footage.

Telecom companies implement SDS to manage the explosion of data from mobile networks and Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

  • It supports the performance requirements for high-speed data services and network management.

  • SDS offers the agility needed to innovate and roll out new services rapidly.

Each of these industries benefits from SDS's ability to efficiently manage large volumes of data, adapt to dynamic environments, and reduce operational costs while maintaining high levels of security and compliance.

Your Difference Is in How You Manage Your Data: Explore Software-Defined Storage

Contact ServerDirect to see how our innovative software-defined storage (SDS) solutions can transform your data management. Our SDS technology offers flexibility, scalability, and cost-efficiency, enhancing how you store, access, and secure your critical data. Partner with us to optimize your storage infrastructure and drive your business forward with cutting-edge data solutions.

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Your difference is in how you manage your Data

In the past, data was simply stored and managed, Nowadays, data is an essential differentiator. Many organizations need help to manage and scale their storage environments with greater efficiency, flexibility, and performance with available industry Software Solutions.

We partner with leaders like Cloudian, Excelero (Nvidia), Hammerspace, Open-E, OSNexus, Qumulo, Quantum, Truenas, Weka,  to tailor solutions that meet your unique SDS and storage challenges. Our expertise and partnerships enable us to offer scalable, efficient storage solutions that enhance data management and accessibility to fit your business needs.


Cloudian provides exabyte-scale storage for your capacity-intensive workloads: S3-compatible storage for on-prem, hybrid cloud, and multi-cloud.

Meet your Most Demanding Data Needs with Limitlessly Scalable Storage that Simplifies Infrastructure

A Better Storage Solution
The exploding growth of enterprise data demands a reliable, efficient and scalable solution. Cisco and Cloudian have collaborated to combine Cloudian’s industry-leading, S3-compatible HyperStore object storage software, with Cisco’s high-capacity, high-performance UCS S-Series servers.

This solution delivers new levels of technical and cost efficiencies for today’s environments – and is ideal for backup, archive, life science, healthcare, media & entertainment, IoT, financial services, and other areas where there is massive data growth and a need for exabyte-scale storage that is affordable, highly reliable and durable. Deployed on-premises, this solution is also hybrid and multi-cloud ready. A single, global namespace ensures a unified view and control of data across all locations, including private on-premise as well as multiple public clouds.


A financial institution can leverage Open-E’s robust storage solutions to ensure high availability and disaster recovery, safeguarding critical financial data against unexpected events.


The QuantaStor Software Defined Storage platform turns servers into multi-protocol scale-out storage appliances and delivers file, block, and object storage.


Store, manage, and simplify all your unstructured data and hybrid workflows in one platform, anywhere - at the edge, in the core, or in any cloud.