Features of the Appliance

The following are the features of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance– Cloud Distribution:

Shared Storage

Multiple Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Compute Classic instances can concurrently write data to and retrieve data over NFSv4 from a common set of files.

POSIX-Compliant NFS Access to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Object Storage Classic

Using Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance, your applications can interact with your storage service instance in the cloud through standard protocols, without invoking direct REST API calls to the service. The appliance is compliant with POSIX standards. You can create multiple NFS shares within a single appliance instance. Using a single appliance instance, you can connect to multiple containers on the storage service. The files are copied to the appliance filesystem by using the NFSv4 protocol. The appliance supports NFS in asynchronous and POSIX-Sync modes. The appliance stores the files as objects in your account by using the HTTPS protocol.

Near-Local Performance, Using a Tunable Cache

To your applications, uploading and retrieving data using Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance– Cloud Distribution appears to be almost the same as accessing block storage within Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Compute Classic.
  • Data that your applications write is first stored in an upload buffer on the local disks of the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Compute Classic instance that hosts Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance. The files are then uploaded asynchronously to your storage service instance in the cloud. If Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance or its host instance stops running for any reason, then cached data isn’t lost. The pending upload operations resume automatically when the appliance starts running again.

  • Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance caches frequently accessed data locally in a read cache, enabling fast data retrieval. You can increase the cache capacity by adding data disks. You can attach up to nine data disks, each up to 2 TB in size.

Based on your workload, you can tune the cache limit—both the number of files that can be cached and the maximum cache size.

Granular Encryption to Enable Data Security and Storage Efficiency

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance stores data securely in your account. The appliance provides data security by keeping the data encrypted both at rest in the storage cloud and during transit from cache to storage cloud. To ensure data security, you can configure the appliance to encrypt data on premises before the data is stored in your account, and decrypt files when they are retrieved. You can update the encryption keys at any point in time. By having granular control that enables encryption at the NFS share level, you can ensure that only sensitive data is being encrypted. This minimizes the performance cost associated with encryption. Encryption is supported at the filesystem level. You can configure encryption for each configured filesystem, which ensures that sensitive data is secured in your account. By using more granular controls, you can increase storage efficiency.

End-to-end Data Integrity with Checksum Verification

The built-in data integrity checks ensure that data is validated as it moves through the data path, from Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance, to your account, enabling seamless end-to-end data integrity. Checksum verification helps in ensuring the data integrity. Metadata integrity checks are performed to ensure that the metadata is in consistent state.

Efficient Handing of Large Files

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance supports large files that exceed the maximum size allowed by Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Object Storage Classic. Large files are sliced into 1 GB segments and each segment is stored as a separate object. The metadata database maintains the manifest of the segments that comprise a given object, so that multi-segment files can be reconstructed automatically when read through the appliance. The segments are uploaded sequentially.

High Availability

If the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Compute Classic instance that hosts Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance crashes for any reason, the instance is re-created automatically with minimal down time. Appliance configuration data remains intact. Cached data isn’t lost. Pending upload operations, if any, at the time of the crash resume automatically. And the cache disks are re-attached automatically to the appliance.

Note:

When the appliance instance is re-created, it gets a new private IP address. So after the instance is re-created, you must mount the filesystems again on your client instances.

Data that you store in your storage service instance in the cloud is replicated automatically on multiple storage nodes within the data center. If one of the nodes fails, copies of the data continue to be available.

Support for Data Archival

(Not available on Oracle Cloud at Customer)

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance supports uploading and restoring objects in containers of the Archive storage class in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Object Storage Classic.

In metered accounts, you can create containers of two storage classes, Standard (default) and Archive. You can use Archive containers to store large data sets that you don't need to access frequently, at a fraction of the cost of storing data in Standard containers. Note that to download data stored in Archive containers, you must first restore the objects. The restoration process can take up to four hours depending on the size of the object. A few features, such as bulk upload and deletion are not supported for Archive containers. Archive containers are ideal for storing data such as email archives, data backups, and digital video masters. For information about the pricing and other terms for the Archive storage class, go to https://cloud.oracle.com/storage?tabID=1406491833493.

Support for File Versions Compaction and End-to-End Delete

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance supports deletion of old file versions from the storage cloud.

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance provides a traditional file system interface for the your storage service instance in the cloud.  It allows file operations with byte-level granularity, such as append, re-write, over-write, and truncate. The storage service supports file operations with whole-file granularity.  As a result, when a file is modified in a filesystem on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance, it results in a new version of the file being created and uploaded to the storage cloud.

When a file that contains multiple versions exists, the latest or most recent version of the file will always be returned when the file is read. The administrator can configure the number of versions of a file that will be retained in your storage service instance in the cloud. File Version Compaction allows the permanent deletion of unwanted versions. Also, if a file is deleted from the filesystem, then the corresponding object(s) in your service instance will also be deleted, if file version compaction is enabled in the appliance.

Quick Access to Select Files with Cache Pinning

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance allows you to pin select files to the filesystem cache for quick access. You can pin files to the cache for filesystems connected to any storage class, Standard or Archive. (Archive support not available on Oracle Cloud at Customer)

When you write a file to your filesystem, it’s initially stored in the filesystem cache, and then uploaded to the container on the storage service. After a file has been uploaded to the container, it may get removed from the filesystem cache by the cache manager. The cache is reclaimed using the Least Recently Used (LRU) cache management policy to meet the cache threshold that’s specified in the filesystem advanced settings. If you want specific files to be always available in the cache for quick access, you can preserve them in the filesystem cache by pinning them to the cache. Once pinned, the files are not removed from the filesystem cache, except if you specifically unpin them.

Appliance Health Check

The appliance health check service is an automated process run on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Storage Software Appliance. You can monitor the overall system status through the health check and get insights on the appliance performance like local storage usage.