Distributed Storage as a Service for End User Performance

At its recent annual Dreamforce show in San Francisco, Salesforce announced a file sharing capability to its Chatter product, Chatterbox. This has the potential to be a market disrupting product extension, and brings a new option for enterprise-class file sharing to the extensive Salesforce user base.

As you might imagine, the delivery of Storage as a Service generates dramatically increased network traffic than that coming from end user Web/HTTP services. Moving from the delivery of web to storage services tilts key drivers of end user satisfaction from latency to bandwidth, as file access and speed of uploads and downloads directly impacts end user productivity and, importantly, end user consumption of the service.

Another key factor to recognize in the consumption of storage as a service is that enterprise customers will be geographically distributed, with some users at headquarters, others at regional locations, and many working on the road using mobile devices. The enterprise network should be designed with direct connectivity back to a core cloud provider’s services, and mobile users need to be presented with geographically distributed storage access points to service them locally. It is simply not good enough or efficient to route enterprise services in an “over-the-top” internet access fashion.

Cloud providers are increasing the bandwidth, security, and reliability of their service through direct connectivity offerings to enterprise customers. Connectivity can include a 1 or 10 Gigabit Ethernet physical connections, Metro Ethernet, and Network Provider connectivity for low latency and high throughput cloud services. Coupling direct connectivity for the core enterprise network with geographically distributed service deployment delivers the high quality of service that end users demand.

At Equinix we’re working with many of the leading software and storage cloud providers who deploy their services across our globally distributed data centers. With over 100 carrier neutral data centers as part of Platform Equinix, we’re in the position of being able to bring cloud services closer to end users. Equinix offers an unmatched ecosystem of cloud partners, network providers, and connected enterprise customers across a global footprint – all requirements when delivering cloud services to an enterprise user base.