Cloud Storage Standardization, Part 1 - Why a Standard?

As cloud storage matures and use increases, there is a strong need for standardized interfaces for performing basic storage operations. Just as the SCSI standard enabled interoperability and facilitated innovation within the directly-attached storage market, the presence of a standard interface for cloud storage will provide many advantages. These include:
  • Improving quality by allowing standardized conformance testing
  • Creating a market for test, validation, profiling, debugging and analysis tools
  • Allowing the creation of standardized documentation
  • Encouraging the publication of articles and books discussing the standard
  • Reducing development work required to use cloud storage and to support multiple providers
  • Enabling the creation of standardized access libraries
  • Reducing customer lock-in and enabling multi-vendor selection
At Bycast, we provide a RESTful HTTP API for object storage access, and next month, I will be presenting our HTTP API at the SNIA cloud storage summit. As part of my preparations, I've been reviewing many of the other HTTP storage APIs used by other industry players, such as Amazon, Microsoft, and Nirvanix. There is significant overlap and commonalities between all of these APIs, and I believe that there is a good chance, at least from a technical standpoint, to create a common lightweight HTTP storage access protocol.

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