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Internet of Things devices generate incredible amounts of data that is primarily in the form of unstructured files. While these IoT files are small, they can quickly add up to petabytes. That makes an object storage system or private cloud, object storage in a public cloud, and a hybrid object storage cloud all ideal IoT storage platforms.
Unstructured data does not fit well on block storage, which is far more suited for structured data. File storage is a possibility; however, the sheer number of files that IoT generates makes the hierarchical nature of file storage sluggish and awkward.
There are six reasons object storage tops the list for IoT storage:
- An object-centric, flat architecture is infinitely scalable, though supported scale is dependent on testing. Object storage can scale from billions to trillions of objects or files with capacities into the yottabytes. This is a major factor in why object storage is the predominant cloud-scale storage model for cloud service providers. That cloud scale makes an object-based architecture an exceptional IoT storage choice.
- Object storage provides extensive metadata on each object or file. That extensive metadata, ranging from kilobytes to gigabytes of information per object, enables efficient and effective search, data mining and analytics on stored data. This is why object storage has become a favored storage system for Hadoop MapReduce, Hadoop YARN or NoSQL projects -- analytics projects that gain value from IoT data.
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- Object storage data is highly durable. This is due to modern erasure coding, a more efficient, lower cost, less resource-intensive and more resilient data protection method than RAID. This durability protects IoT data long-term, which enables historical analysis over long periods of time.
- Object-based storage has a high ingestion rate. IoT storage needs to handle dozens to millions of concurrent data streams. Object storage is a shared-nothing architecture that scales processing at the same time it scales capacity through the addition of object storage nodes. Each node adds compute power, which enables object storage to scale to the ingest rate required by IoT.
- Users can perform online tech refreshes in object environments. An object storage system never has to go offline, and its data never needs to be migrated. New nodes are added, old ones are removed and any objects that existed in the removed nodes are simply rebuilt via erasure codes.
- Object storage is low cost. It is architected to provide the lowest possible cost for active IoT storage or any other kind of data.
The Internet of Things has generated huge buzz among IT professionals. The number of devices connected to the Internet is estimated to be in the billions, with growth continuing to accelerate. IoT devices generate incredible amounts of data, but getting value out of IoT data requires it to be stored and analyzed cost effectively.
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