Seagate thinks it has found a way to dramatically simplify storage infrastructure for large-scale systems.
Instead of having storage applications talk to a filesystem, which talks to storage servers, which talk to disks, Seagate's new Kinetic HDD hard disk drive cuts out the middlemen.
This means storage applications talk directly to disk drives via Ethernet, using an open source object storage API.
In addition, the servers and storage in a data centre can be expanded completely independently, and the API is designed to accommodate changes in storage technology without alteration to servers or operating systems.
Kinetic HDD is suited to object data storage, hyperscale and scale-out storage, cloud storage arrays, and cloud backup storage, according to the company.
"Over the past decade, the unprecedented explosion of data has been driven by social media, smartphones, tablets, and the rapid growth of every sort of Internet-connected device," said Seagate vice president of marketing Scott Horn.
"Cloud service providers (CSPs) are increasingly looking for solutions that will simplify infrastructure, improve scalability and reduce costs— Kinetic HDD addresses these needs revolutionising the data storage economics for today's cloud and beyond."
The 4TB drive has dual Gigabit Ethernet interfaces and a maximum data transfer rate of 60MBps.
HP is one of the companies that have been working with Seagate on the Kinetic API.
"HP is working closely with Seagate in our exploration of Ethernet connected drives," said HP director of modular compute and storage Jimmy Daley.
"At HP, we focus on continually driving meaningful innovation in big data solutions and believe Kinetic technology could have a significant impact on the way data intense applications operate in the future."
Seagate is demonstrating the Kinetic Open Storage Platform at OpenStack Summit Paris 2014 this week.