Red Hat Gains Gluster To Better Manage Explosion Of Big Data

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Red Hat, Inc. today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Gluster, Inc., a leading provider of scale-out, open source storage solutions for standardizing the management of unstructured data. With this $136 million cash acquisition, Red Hat tries to define a new baseline for how enterprise IT can better manages the explosion of big data, whether deployed on-premise or spanning into the public cloud. This helps Red Hat expanding into a critical part of enterprise infrastructure, enabling it to deliver open storage solutions that protect customer investments as they approach the new era of computing.

“The explosion of big data and the new paradigm of cloud computing are converging, forcing IT to re-think storage investments that are cost-effective, manageable and scale for the future,” said Brian Stevens, CTO and vice president, Worldwide Engineering at Red Hat. “Our customers are looking for software-based storage solutions that manage their file-based data on-premise, in the cloud and bridging between the two. With unstructured data growth (such as log files, virtual machines, email, audio, video and documents), the 90′s paradigm of forcing everything into expensive, single-system DBMS residing on an internal corporate SAN has become unwieldy and impractical.”. Feel free to dive into the full take from Brian Steven on Gluster.

Founded in 2005, Gluster’s goal was to simplify storage using open source software and commodity hardware. The heart of Gluster is GlusterFS, a software-only, scale-out storage system. It allows enterprises to combine large numbers of commodity storage and compute resources into a high-performance, centrally-managed and globally-accessible storage pool. By combining commodity economics with a scale-out approach, customers can deploy abundant storage without compromising on cost, performance and manageability. Gluster has emerged as an innovative open source leader, relied upon by companies such as Pandora, Box.net and Samsung to efficiently manage large volumes of data.

“We are extremely pleased to be joining Red Hat,” said AB Periasamy, co-founder and CTO of Gluster. “We believe this is a perfect combination of technologies, strategies and cultures and is a great development for our customers, employees, investors and community.  Gluster started off with a goal to be the Red Hat of storage. Now, we are the storage of Red Hat.”
“Enterprises and service providers have struggled to manage their rapidly expanding unstructured data stores with conventional storage systems,” said Henry Baltazar, senior analyst of The 451 Group. “The scale out storage technology and expertise Red Hat is gaining from the acquisition of Gluster will serve as a powerful foundation for future public, private and hybrid storage clouds.”

In September 2008, Red Hat already acquired Qumranet, Inc. including its Kernel Virtual Machine (KVM) platform and SolidICE offering, a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), which together presented a comprehensive virtualization platform for enterprise customers. With the addition of Gluster to KVM Red Hat now seems to aim at offering a cloud platform too. Interesting times ahead in the crowded cloud market.

Red Hat has agreed to acquire Gluster, a privately-held company, for approximately $136 million in cash. As part of the transaction, Red Hat will also assume unvested Gluster equity outstanding on the closing date and issue certain equity retention incentives.  The transaction is expected to close in October, subject to customary closing conditions.

About the author

I'm a Belgian based internet entrepreneur and the owner of Virtualization.com & Virtualisation.com. I failed at raising venture capital for my X86 virtualization venture in 1999 and moved on to found Casius.com, Virtualisers.be & Data.be... This is where I keep my finger on the Virtualization pulse.

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