The Hitachi HNAS and VSP NAS systems are scale-out NAS systems with custom hardware designs for high performance NFS and CIFS/SMB access. They are dedicated file-serving appliances in the case of HNAS or add-in hardware to VSP systems with the ability to scale up to 16PB in a single namespace with a single file system of up to 256 TB. The systems use the HNAS custom architecture, which implements file server functions in hardware using parallel state machines to provide the same functionality as the software functions running on a standard server of competitive offerings. The HNAS 30×0 and HNAS 4000 systems can scale to 2 or 4 N+1 nodes depending on the model.
Hitachi Data Systems has created a high-performance NAS system by implementing much of the traditional file serving functionality in hardware. It does this by implementing the TCP/IP software stack, file system, file system protocols and storage functions in hardware using field programmable gate array chips (FPGAs). Using internal switching logic, HNAS includes a switched back-end architecture for the storage. The hardware-intensive implementation allows the device to process remote file requests faster than implementations that use standard server platforms with software implementations. The implementation is based on custom logic implemented with FPGAs for specific tasks that are usually performed by a processor running software.
The HNAS systems support deduplication through their hardware FPGAs to minimize impact of the data reduction. Migration with a policy engine is supported for file to NAS systems using NFS and to object or cloud systems using Amazon S3 protocol.
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