Dell accelerates Fluid File System momentum

Recently, we launched version 5 of the Dell Fluid File System (FluidFS), our high performance scale-out NAS solution. FluidFS v5 helps customers address the challenges of managing growth in the number and size of user files. It also supports file-based workflows in specialized areas like video surveillance, media and entertainment, and scientific research.

One of the more interesting use cases we found for FluidFS is the recently launched Dell Fluid File Video Solution to help customers with growing data demands in video surveillance.  As video surveillance increasingly evolves into a more digital-based solution, it will become more challenging to store, access and search all of the recorded video.  The Dell Fluid File Video Solution helps customers address this by enabling storage and performance to be scaled independently to ensure it is tailored to actual requirements and avoids overspending.   

Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, one of the 10 busiest airports in the United States for passenger traffic, is deploying the Dell Fluid File Video Solution as part of a video surveillance consolidation project to help simplify and streamline the administration associated with the current environment and to better deal with their tremendous data growth demands. The deployment will contain roughly around 500TB of raw storage to accommodate current retention policies for video surveillance. They will be able to easily and non-disruptively scale this solution beyond the initial 500TB as their storage requirements grow over time.

FluidFS version 5 available on the FS8600 with the Storage Center platform, has a host of improvements spanning across protocol support, management, and security. In addition, we’ve enhanced the feature set and specifications of the system. Since the previous version 4, release we have experienced double digit year-over-year growth of the FS8600 platform.

Specific enhancements include:

  • Global Namespace – Simplifies access to tens of petabytes of data by spanning a single global namespace across multiple FluidFS clusters or heterogeneous NAS devices supporting SMB 2, SMB 3 or NFS v4 protocols.
  • PowerShell and REST API – Storage Administrators can script common day-to-day tasks such as creating NAS volumes, shares and taking snapshots, allowing administrators to tie scripts into their application workflow reducing the need for manual work.
  • Data Governance with Dell Change Auditor – This integration is vital for customers looking to remain in regulatory compliance and protect against data breaches by understanding who is accessing data and how they are doing it.
  • Lower latency for Windows clients – With the new FluidFS v5, we have seen 87% less latency for Windows clients reading many small files, compared to the previous FluidFS release. 1 For customers in the engineering design and automation industry, this is a significant improvement in performance. 
  • Increased scalability- We’ve increased scalability of the Dell Fluid File Video Solution from 1.3PB raw up to 4PB raw, allowing customers to store more data, still maintaining simplicity of managing a single system. This scalability means we can now offer customers even more cost effective storage, as low as $0.17/GB. 2

So far, feedback from customers and partners on FluidFS version 5 has been very positive:

The Global Namespace feature of the Dell Fluid File System v5 simplifies managing diverse data sets, so they’re much easier to track and document. Our staff doesn’t have to learn what underlies the diversity of those data sets either. It’s all very seamless and really brilliant in its execution.

– Jessica Tanenhaus, Founder & Partner, Mavenspire


With Fluid File System version 5, Dell isn’t just trying to check one box — it’s checking all of the boxes at the same time. With version 5, Dell has taken a look at the industry and decided to make the most robust and functional product for this type of demand. FluidFS version 5 addresses key issues like data governance and file server size, and it gets the job done in a simple way without sacrificing power and flexibility.

Matt Weaver, Senior Geek, Candoris


I look forward to communicating more on our FluidFS momentum and interesting use cases to our customers and partners soon.  For more information in the meantime, please visit Dell FS8600 and review the new Dell Fluid FS v5: Flexible and Secure Scale-out File System whitepaper.


1 – Based on January 2016 Dell performance testing of FS8600 with SC8000 array, using a simple file-generation and consumption test with 8 Windows 2012R2 client running 16 streams of data consumption (Claim no: G16000016)

2- Based on internal Dell pricing and discount analysis, February 2016. Individual customer’s price may vary based on a variety of circumstances (Claim no: G15000048)

Travis Vigil

About the Author: Travis Vigil

Travis Vigil is Senior Vice President leading Portfolio and Product Management for Dell’s Infrastructure Solutions Group (ISG). He and his team are responsible for the Product, Offer and APEX (as-a-Service) Roadmap for Dell’s Server, Storage, Data Protection, CI/HCI, Networking, and Solutions portfolios. He has over 20 years of Product Management, Marketing and Business Operations experience with technology companies including Dell and Intel. In previous roles at Dell, he served as Senior Vice President for Storage & Data Protection Product Management, and Senior Vice President for Business Operations focused on Dell’s Server, Storage and Networking Business with commercial customers. He has a B.S. from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.