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Something old, something new, and a little magic

Written by on November 5, 2013 in Blog, individuals - Comments Off

Today we become a bigger part of the team at Coho Data. Since we have been part of the team from the beginning it doesn’t feel much different. However, the great work done over the past year has excited us to the point of leading the investment in the latest round of financing. That great work is the delivery of an amazing storage product with disruptive performance characteristics and a future enabled by riding the evolution of the old, leverage of the new, and catalyzed by the magic of software.

The combination of old, new and software to make a great product has a pattern of success. The first PCs were just that.  IBM combined a new microprocessor and bit mapped graphics with some inexpensive 8 bit peripheral support hardware and a simple operating system and an industry is born. Coho is combining technology for a similar effect.   The old here is standard off the shelf servers, disk, and flash. We love that stuff since everyone knows what it is and can trust it since it’s already part of the tried and true compute infrastructure we use all the time.  The new is a programmable SDN switch. The software magic delivers a storage system with industry leading performance from single though many nodes with linear scale. And that many is really many.  What this means for customers is the ability to start small while knowing up front that they don’t need to change architectures as their needs change.  Scalability goes both ways (up and down). We often forget that. Of course we are all focused on more and faster.

Many times innovation seems like a cool trick and the Coho architecture clearly is that.  Great performance can usually be achieved by building a new system top to bottom. Coho didn’t do that. It took a few components that were designed separately. Then they effectively created an operating system for scale out file serving. The beauty of an operating system approach is that future performance benefits are accreted to the customer as all of the silos of technology improve on their own.  This is similar to benefits end users get for their desktop applications as things like graphics and system I/O improve. A properly designed operating system doesn’t require massive redesign or end user retraining as hardware innovation occurs under the covers. The user simply benefits. The user benefit also is about choice. A user can decide the level of performance needed and can pay up to higher levels as needed or not. The Coho architecture is centered on the same design philosophy given a set of hardware components that have baseline capabilities.   Of course if you look at the founding team of the company one would expect nothing less.

As proud investors in Coho Data we look forward continued innovation that will benefit businesses of all sizes along all performance and cost curves.  Congratulation to the team on building a product that will change the face of storage. More to come.

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