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With a major shift toward software-defined storage (SDS)—which is attached directly to a server,  rather than a storage array—gaining momentum, many solution providers are trying to figure out how best to tap into that opportunity.

With that goal in mind Scality, a provider of software designed to manage petabytes of storage using object-based software running on a server, has raised another $45 million to build a more robust global channel.

Scality formed a reseller alliance with Dell last month and established an earlier reseller relationship with Hewlett-Packard.

Now, Scality is looking to address the rest of the server market with help from the channel.

The company is committed to using those funds to put in place all the traditional programs that a vendor needs to succeed in the channel, said Leo Leung, Scality vice president of marketing.

Scality has developed a scale-out approach to SDS called Scality RING that uses an object-based storage system that can be invoked on a server using it as an object storage system or as traditional file system. In addition, the company supports the storage application programming interfaces (APIs) defined in OpenStack.

The end result is an SDS environment that can address both traditional enterprise applications and emerging cloud-native applications based on OpenStack, REST APIs and object-based storage, Leong said.

Another significant thing about Scality RING is that storage volumes can be any size, which eliminates many of the storage management headaches that have historically plagued IT organizations.

Put it altogether, and Scality is at the forefront of significant change in how data storage is being deployed and managed. The challenge that most IT organizations have is that they can’t afford to throw away all their legacy approaches to storage overnight. As such, many of them are now looking for ways to bridge the storage divide between legacy applications that expect to see file-based storage and modern cloud applications that expect to invoke objects and APIs.

As is often the case, disruption on this scale is usually good for the channel—assuming, of course, that solution providers have a way to help customers make a transition to a new era of storage without having to completely close the door on everything that has gone before.

Michael Vizard has been covering IT issues in the enterprise for more than 25 years as an editor and columnist for publications such as InfoWorld, eWEEK, Baseline, CRN, ComputerWorld and Digital Review.