Amazon’s S3 is a great storage cloud service. It provides highly available access to highly reliable storage at a price. It has emerged as the data storage cloud de-facto standard for good reasons. Its REST API has allowed several 3rd party software vendors to make impressive clients, both GUI and command line.
However, it is closed source and unavailable to the numerous data centers actively used for science. Can private data cloud providers that already have substantial amounts of hardware allow their users to take advantage of the known interfaces and existing clients? Can the Scientific community that already has access to vast amounts of computing and storage power, but not access to an expense accounts take advantage of these data storage cloud innovations?
To address these questions the Nimbus project is presenting Cumulus at Super Computing 2010. Cumulus is an S3 protocol compliant data storage cloud service. It is not the only S3 look-a-like, but it very well could be the easiest to use. Additionally Cumulus provided features uncommon to the others. It has a baked-in, and backward compatible protocol compliant feature that enforces user storage quotas. This feature allows private clouds to control fair sharing by means other than credit card charges. Cumulus lets the cloud provider control their own ratio of cost (amount of redundant hardware) to availability, and more importantly, their own performance and locality needs. In this graph we show how Cumulus measures up to popular data transfer protocols like GridFTP.
For more information, including more graphs like the one above check out the Cumulus poster, and come talk to us as we present it in the Main Lobby at Super Computing 2010 Tuesday night between 5:15 and 7pm.