Designing your organization’s storage solutions requires IT to think about many different factors. One of those factors is the software your servers will run — specifically, whether you’ll use a closed or open software solution. Neither one is inherently better than the other, so the solution you choose largely depends on your organization. To find the best storage solution, start by considering the pros and cons of open source software.
Open source software is prized for its transparency, as the name implies. This means that the software can be modified, inspected, and shared by anyone. Since the code is available for all to see, well-supported software communities are quick to squash bugs. Additionally, open code is subject to the review of a community of developers, making malicious software that abuses user data less likely to exist. These are big selling points for those who care about data security.
Open code also means it may be supported by a large number of devs with diverse backgrounds, improving the software’s code quality. Additionally, open source software is easier to customize since development teams can freely access the code. During planning, this access can help devs determine whether the software solution they’re considering can be adapted to their needs with a reasonable level of development.
However, community-supported software does have downsides. These downsides are largely a result of being dependent on the community for major updates. The community’s goals may not align with your company’s needs, or the community may not be robust enough to provide regular updates. If you are solely dependent on the community for updates, your storage software quality may suffer.
Open source storage software may also lack support. In contrast, proprietary storage software often comes with the backing of a large organization whose best interest is to look out for the well-being of its customers. This results in quicker support resolution and a dedicated team to provide customer assistance.
Despite the cons, open source storage servers can provide your organization with cost savings and flexibility not found with proprietary alternatives. The following questions can help you determine if open source is right for your organization.
Do you need in-house support, or can you rely on the community? Open source solutions will likely need tweaking to fit your needs. If you have an in-house IT team that can take care of these changes and ongoing support, you won’t need to rely on community support.
How much control do you want over your software? Open source software gives you more flexibility in how you can customize your software, but that also means you’ll have to fully manage it.
What does your current software tech stack look like? How compatible your storage server software is with other software in your organization will greatly impact employee workflows. You don’t want employees inventing workarounds just to connect to your storage servers. Check on compatibility requirements before making a decision.
Intequus helps businesses design, build, deploy, and manage their storage servers. Our team can help you customize servers to fit your precise requirements. Whether you need ultra-dense storage, extreme performance, or a blend of the two, our team can help. Contact us to learn more.