Amazon Web Services Launches Cloud Attack Against On-Premises Filers – Blocks and Files
Amazon Web Services wants to convince customers to replace on-premises files with a caching gateway channel to an SMB file server in its public cloud.
It launched Amazon FSx File Gateway as a virtual machine or on-premises hardware appliance. This receives file access requests from local users and applications and sends them to its FSx for Windows file server running in its public cloud. The network link is said to be optimized and the FSx File Gateway maintains a cache of frequently accessed files, providing them with low latency access and minimizing network transfers.
Steve Roberts, an Amazon developer advocate focused on developing .NET and PowerShell on AWS, said it is a “new kind of AWS Storage Gateway that helps you access data stored in the cloud with Amazon FSx for Windows File Server, instead of continuing to use and manage on-premises file servers. “
This is a new type as it accompanies the existing S3 file gateway, which is used to ingest on-premises data into Amazon’s S3 storage service. FSx File Gateway supports SMB, not NFS protocol. It is accessible from Windows, MacOS, and Linux systems, and supports multiple user access to home directories and group shares.
Roberts noted, “You can attach an Amazon FSx file system and present it through a gateway to your applications and users as long as they are all members of the same Active Directory domain and the AD infrastructure can be hosted in AWS Directory. Service or managed on-premises. “
Amazon’s FSx File Server for Windows offers file recovery, data deduplication, Active Directory integration, and access control through Access Control Lists (ACLs). The FSx File Gateway is integrated with backups performed directly in Amazon FSx and with those coordinated by AWS Backup.
Roberts suggests that Remote Offices and Branch Offices (ROBOs) could use FSX File Gateway and treat FSx File Server for Windows in AWS as a primary datacenter file server for ROBO sites. There is then no need to have ROBO files on site or one in the data center either.
Competing vendors including CTERA, Egnyte, Nasuni and Panzura will undoubtedly be promoting their multi-cloud and NFS support, as well as their SMB support. This NFS support will undoubtedly be mentioned by on-premises file providers who may also say that caching is limited and only affects frequently accessed files.