WekaIO recently announced Version 3.1 of their Matrix software, and I had the good fortune to catch up with David Hiatt. We’d spoken a little while ago when WekaIO came out of stealth and they’ve certainly been busy in the interim. In fact, they’ve been busy to the point that I thought it was worth putting together a brief overview of what’s new.
What Is WekaIO?
WekaIO have been around since 2013, gaining their first customers in 2016. They’ve had 17 patents filed, 45 identified, and 8 issued. Their focus has primarily been on delivering, in their words, the “highest performance file system targeted at compute intensive applications”. They deliver a fully POSIX-compliant file system that can run on bare metal, hypervisors, Docker, or in the public or private cloud.
[image courtesy of WekaIO]
Some of the key features of the architecture include the fact that it is distributed, resilient at scale, can perform fast rebuilds, and provides end-to-end protection. Right now, their key use cases include genomics, machine learning, media rendering, semiconductors, financial trading and analytics. The company has staff coming from XIV, NetApp, IBM, EMC, and Intel, amongst others.
So What’s News?
Well, there’s been a bit going on:
- They recently announced that they’d become an OEM partner of HPE;
- They made a joint announcement with Mellanox and San Diego Super Computing (SDSC). The idea is that they can “challenge conventional HPC architectures by burst buffer systems”; and
- They launched Matrix 3.1 at AWS re:Invent, and Matrix is now available in the AWS Marketplace.
Matrix Version 3.1 – Much Better Than Matrix Revolutions
Not that that’s too hard to do. But there have been a bunch of new features added to WekaIO’s Matrix software. Here’s a table that summarises the new features.
|Network Redundancy||Binding network links and load balancing|
|Infiniband||Native support for InfiniBand|
|Multiple File Systems||Logical partitioning allows more granular allocation of performance and capacity|
|Cluster Scaling||Dynamically shrink and grow clusters|
|NVMe||Native support for NVMe devices|
|Snapshots and Clones||High performance 4K granularity|
|Snap to Object Store||Saving metadata of snap to OBS|
|Deployment in AWS||Install and run Matrix on EC2 clusters|
David also took me through what look like some very, very good SPECsfs2014 Software Build results, particularly when compared with some competitive solutions. He also walked me through the Marketplace configurator. This is really cool stuff – flexible and easy to use. You can check out a demo of it here.
All the cool kids are doing stuff with AWS. And that’s fine. But I really like that WekaIO also make stuff easy to run on-premises as well. And they also make it really fast. Because sometimes you just need to run stuff near you, and sometimes there needs to be an awful lot of it. WekaIO’s model is flexible, with the annual subscription approach and lack of maintenance contracts bound to appeal to a lot of people. The great thing is it’s easy to manage, easy to scale and supports all the file protocols you’d be interested in. There’s a bunch of (configurable) resiliency built in and support for hybrid workloads if required.
With a Formula One slide including customer testimonials from the likes of DreamWorks and SDSC, I get the impression that WekaIO are up to something pretty cool. Plus, I really enjoy chatting to David about what’s going on in the world of highly scalable file systems, and am looking forward to our next call in a few months’ time to see what they’ve been up to. I get the impression there’s little chance they’ll be sitting still.