Tuesday, 23 May 2017 11:06

Nextcloud adds Global Scale architecture in version 12

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The open-source file syncing and sharing software NextCloud will include a new architecture for scaling several orders of magnitude beyond current limits in its next release, version 12.

The new architecture, known as Global Scale, is claimed to allow for greater scalability, better cost-efficiency, and global distribution.

"Nextcloud Global Scale works by effectively removing the need for shared components in the existing architecture like the load balancers, hosting centre uplink, database, storage, and cache," the company said in a statement.

"It uses multiple independent application servers, called nodes, each running on standard, inexpensive commodity hardware. Storage, database, and cache are running local on the application servers and no longer have to be kept in sync."

"With Global Scale, Nextcloud moves the goal posts for efficient, highly scalable and easy to deploy and extend enterprise file sync and share solutions" said Frank Karlitschek, managing director at Nextcloud.

"By automatically moving user data between nodes to achieve an optimal balance between legal requirements, costs and Quality of Service, GS removes traditional, costly scalability limitations like data centre uplink, load balancers and database, storage and cache."

Nextcloud Global Scale is claimed to eliminate the need for a central database, storage and cache solution, and enable individual nodes to take advantage of commodity hardware to save costs and increase flexibility. It has three main components:

The nodes are accessed by users through the Global Site Selector which redirect the user to the node their data currently resides on;

Sharing is mediated through the Lookup Server (LS) which is queried by internal or external share requests and resolves the current location of the shared data. The LS also is responsible for tracking storage and quota settings as well as Quality of Service metrics like speed and reliability class and the physical location of users.

The final component of GS is the Balancer which is responsible for monitoring the load of individual nodes and initiating the migration of users between nodes based on QoS settings and changes in physical location of users.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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