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Red Hat, the world’s most financially successful Linux software and services company, made a bold move into the storage software business Oct. 4 with the acquisition of Gluster, whose open-source storage file system for unstructured data runs a growing number of new-generation IT companies.

The transaction will cost Red Hat about $136 million in cash. The deal is expected to close in October.

The newest version of the virtual appliance-type file system for data storage enables access to the same data as both an object and as a file a huge perk for storage managers.

The software comes in several deployment versions: for on-premises installation, virtual machines, and for public and private cloud environments. Gluster, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., positions this as the first "true unified file and object data storage software."

"Enterprises and service providers have struggled to manage their rapidly expanding unstructured data stores with conventional storage systems," said Henry Baltazar, senior analyst of The 451 Group. "The scale-out storage technology and expertise Red Hat is gaining from the acquisition of Gluster will serve as a powerful foundation for future public, private and hybrid storage clouds."

GlusterFS 3.3 allows users to access data as objects from an Amazon S3-compatible interface and access files from a Network Attached Storage (NAS) interface, including Network File System (NFS) and Common Internet File System (CIFS).

For infrastructure as a service (IaaS) providers, GlusterFS 3.3 enables organizations to build their own Amazon-like storage offerings for their customers. Companies can use GlusterFS to accelerate the process of preparing applications for the cloud, simplify new application development for cloud computing environments, and back up data center unified files and objects to Amazon Web Services (AWS) or to a private cloud.

Gluster customers currently include Pandora, and Samsung.

To read the original eWeek article, click here: Red Hat Acquires Gluster Cloud-Ready Storage System