Nasuni, a cloud storage start-up founded by storage veterans Andres Rodriguez and Robert Mason early last year, has just released a beta of their first product. The Nasuni Filer is a virtual NAS appliance that can be installed in VMware, and creates a gateway between your local network and your choice of cloud-based storage.
The filer integrates into your network as a normal NAS appliance, presenting CIFS shares with all the normal features you’d expect including Active Directory integration and ACLs. Instead of a full local copy of your data, the Nasuni filer only holds a local cache of frequently-used data. The bulk of your storage is outsourced to your choice of cloud storage provider, and only downloaded upon request.
In addition to the normal filer functions, the Nasuni offers advanced features such as snapshots, and end-to-end encryption of data that is sent to the cloud. All in all, the product sounds like a good fit for companies looking to store large amounts of not-too-active data; if the most-used files fit in the local cache performance should be nearly identical to a normal NAS, but with nearly unlimited capacity and pay-as-you-go pricing.
Speaking of pricing, the pricing for the filer seems reasonable as well: $300 per month per filer, with no additional per-user or per-GB fees. The current storage providers supported are Amazon S3 ($0.15/GB) and Iron Mountain ASP ($0.65/GB), with support for Nirvanix SDN coming soon at $0.25/GB. The only thing I’m missing right now is support for redundant cloud providers; having your files backed up at both Amazon and a second party would ensure near-100% availability.