Sync is the big hammer approach, and was the first technology to address the issue over 10 years ago by Dropbox and Box. The idea is simple, put a copy of the file wherever you may need to access it, and keep changes synchronized across all devices.
The approach is OK for individual users with smaller sized files and data sets with casual sharing requirements, and both companies have achieved great success with their services.However as data sets and file sizes grow, this approach does not easily scale to production use for primary data. As anyone who has a large data set can attest, it is just too noisy for production.
While there are solutions for those seeking to use data stored in these services – generally connectors which pull the data from the service for specific applications – they are fraught with compromise. Users still need to inefficiently download and sync files across multiple locations, consuming precious time and resources.
Besides the noisy overhead, one of the biggest downsides we hear from users is the lack of customer control over where and how their data is stored. Supreme trust in your provider is a prerequisite.
Accessing object storage via file sync products is possible, they just weren’t designed for direct application transactions relying on primary data.
LucidLink is a distributed file system optimized for object storage. It is a true cloud approach to the architecture, dealing with both the challenges and the advantages that cloud object storage present. LucidLink distributes metadata to the devices, removing the bulk of the chatter over the wire between applications and the file system. This allows us to transfer the data much more efficiently to the client. We further enhance performance through caching and pre-fetching.