To better support its customers wishing to use flash storage resources in NVMe-oF mode, OVHCloud is strengthening with the acquisition of the Texas start-up Exten Technologies.
After the acquisition of French OpenIO (object storage) last month, OVHCloud acquired Exten Technologies. Specializing in NVME-oF (NVMe Over Fabric) flash storage, which now competes with traditional SAN systems, this start-up will therefore help the French hosting company and cloud service provider to strengthen its infrastructure and offer a more efficient block storage thanks to the magic of NVMe-oF. Among Exten’s competitors, we can mention the start-ups Pavilion Data, Vast Data, Kioxia, Lightbits – without forgetting the precursor E8 Storage now in the bosom of AWS – but also Pure Storage, HPE, Delll-EMC or even NetApp.
Already adopted by leading flash storage vendors, NVMe-oF brings the performance of DAS systems to a dedicated storage Ethernet, Infiniband or FC network. NVMe is an extremely fast communication protocol – and associated controller – designed for NAND flash and exploiting PCIe bus bandwidth. NVMe SSDs deliver better performance (higher IOPS per CPU cycle) and lower latency (a few microseconds) than SSDs using SATA and SAS interfaces. NVMe over Fabric offers the same performance benefits as internal NVMe but off the rack by deploying the protocol over an Ethernet, Fiber Channel, or Infiniband LAN. This results in extremely low latency capability and very high network bandwidth.
Exten’s hypervisor allows NVMe-oF flash storage resources to be federated to create a block mode hub.
Founded in 2013 and based in Austin, Texas, Exten employs around ten people according to Crunchbase and has already established partnerships with Dell-EMC, HPE, SuperMicro, AIC and Wistron. Exten’s software solution – a hypervisor in fact – installs on commodity type servers (x86 or ARM) to deploy an NVMe-oF solution. Whether Exten will continue to work with its customers and partners or simply become an additional stack in OVHCloud’s offering remains to be seen. In a press release announcing the takeover of Exten by OVHCloud, we simply learn that “the employees of Exten […] will work closely with OVHcloud’s existing team of experts in the US and around the world.”