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3 Object Storage Principles to Follow as an Advanced User

How to avoid common pitfalls? Familiar with object storage design and usage patterns? Or lastly, high-performance metadata and how to configure to maximize performance?



In Zen Buddhism, the term “Soshin” refers to the mindset of a beginner. This means having an attitude of openness, eagerness and a lack of preconceptions when studying a subject—even when studying at an advanced level, just as a beginner would.

Learn About Advanced Use of Object Storage

At Caringo, we’ve spent 15 years developing an ecosystem of tools and testing Swarm extensively with other technology products. We’ve also built technology partnerships to ensure that Swarm Object Storage will work with the tools and workflows that you already have in place.

Our Director of Product Eric Dey and I both started with Caringo in 2006, the year after it was founded. Since then, we’ve both worked in varying roles in the organization. This has given us the opportunity to gain a deep understanding not only of the technology behind object storage, but insight into the problems organizations are trying to solve and the use cases that are the best fit for object storage.

In addition to discussing how to avoid common pitfalls, we will discuss object storage design and usage patterns, high-performance metadata and how to configure object storage to maximize performance.

What are the 3 Object Storage Principles for Advanced Users?

Let’s face it—in today’s hectic world, we don’t have time to waste when it comes to addressing our organization’s data storage challenges. With that said, here are three principles to advance your use of object storage, and perhaps they will also enhance other areas of your life.

Bring Beginner’s Mind

While it is true that the S3 protocol (the de facto standard for cloud storage and object storage) broadens your storage options in private, public and hybrid cloud storage, not all implementations are equal. That is to say, one size does not fit all. If a vendor tells you their product will work for all of your storage needs no matter what your use case, I recommend that you run away as fast as you can. (For more on this topic, watch our on-demand webinar What Your Storage Vendor Isn’t Telling You About S3.)

Observe Fundamentals

Some best practices are quite obvious; for example:

  • Choose data protection settings that leave data available during routine maintenance and common failures
  • Avoid single points of failure in your storage architecture
  • Keep a clear eye on your recovery point objective (RPO)

Other best practices may not be quite as apparent to a novice object storage user; for example:

  • Avoid split-brain outages (as Elasticsearch cannot resolve these)
  • Embrace eventual consistency
  • Avoid explicit locking of data

While following best practices for object storage may sound like common sense, you would be surprised how often people are tempted to deviate.

Use the Right Tool for the Right Job

We typically emphasize the web-based user interfaces and graphical user interfaces (GUIs) of Swarm Object Storage; but for advanced users, we don’t have to skip the good ol’ command line. These command-line clients are often the best tools with the most mileage!

You don’t have to use a purpose-built S3 client, just the curl command will work against the REST HTTP APIs in many cases. However, there are some excellent command-line clients that will simplify your scripts and accelerate your transfer rates. Using the S3cmd and aws-cli clients are worth consideration, particularly if your workload includes large files that benefit from multipart parallel uploads and downloads. Finally, they can be the perfect tools for incrementally testing your code and understanding object storage communications.

A Deeper Dive Into Object Storage

More Resources for Learning About Object Storage

Whether you fall into the category of novice or expert object storage user, we’ve developed an extensive library of data storage resources such as our Tech Tuesday webinar series so you can find the information when you need it. And, you are always welcome to contact us if you have questions or need assistance determining if object storage is the right solution for your organization. Object-based storage vendors like Caringo can solve many of today’s object storage challenges. Watch the video A Deeper Dive Into Object Storage. Where Caringo delves into the advancements and fundamentals of object storage, and share customer success stories with organizations that have adopted object storage.

Ryan Meek
Ryan Meek

About The Author

After graduating from University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Economics, Ryan Meek worked in software development in early stage companies in Austin. Ryan joined Caringo in 2006 as a senior developer and has had roles in Engineering, Technical Account Management and Sales. Ryan has delivered numerous customer solutions in the Americas, Europe and APAC and is currently Principal Solutions Architect for Caringo.

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