TechRadar Pro landed on Seagate's booth at CeBIT 2014 earlier today to check out the just-announced BigFoot Object Storage solution from German manufacturer Rausch.
The first question that I put to them was about the BigFoot name. BigFoot, for those who remember, was a hard disk family owned by Quantum who was then acquired by Maxtor, who was then absorbed by Seagate.
In theory therefore Seagate owns the BigFoot trademark in storage; whether or not they licensed it to their German partner, nobody on the stand could tell me.
As for the device itself, it is a boring-looking 4U rack server that could actually pave the way for a revolution in data centres with a refocusing on the first word, data. My interlocutor of the day, Marcus Ulonska, said that the product was all about unstructured data and trying to scale massively.
It gets really interesting once you get past the marketing lingo and peer over the technical details. The device is part of the Kinetic Open Storage Platform (otherwise known as KOSP) and what it seeks to do is offer a solution for simple, massively scalable data demand based on objects (e.g. video, audio, documents etc).
What that means is a chassis that can accommodate up to 72 4TB hot swappable enterprise HDDs in one 4U space with each of them offering two 1Gbps Ethernet Interfaces (not sure whether RJ45 or RJ45 to SAS), which will also power the drive.
No controller is required - each hard disk drive has its own IP - and the whole system is powered by two 1.36Kw PSUs. Seagate wouldn't tell us more details about what's on the drive mainboard but added that the targeted market is non I/O intensive tasks.