Tag Archives: transparent compression

NetApp advanced Data Compression (from BeleniX?)

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I came across this article on a so called advanced compression feature in OnTap: https://communities.netapp.com/docs/DOC-14329. There is a bunch of marketing fluff in the beginning of the article till you come to the second section where the real technique is illustrated. This is a simple idea being drummed up a bit. There is nothing special compared to what I had implemented for BeleniX and the OpenSolaris livecd years back. It is the very same feature.

Don’t believe me? Head over to my livemedia slides: http://www.osdevcon.org/2007/slides/osol_livemedia.pdf (slide 13). This is the presentation I delivered at the First OpenSolaris Developer Conference in 2007 in Berlin. It was hosted by the good folks of theĀ  German Unix User’s Group.

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At the high level there are but a couple of differences with the NetApp implementation. The OnTap version of course provides write capability which I did not implement since I was dealing with CDROMs. OnTap uses a compressibility threshold of 25% while I used 12% in the livecd case.

When I wanted to leave SUN and was looking for a change I had interviewed briefly with NetApp but decided not to pursue it for the sake of BeleniX at that time (OpenSolaris+ZFS was NetApp competition). However I had put all details of my CDROM Filesystem I/O scheduler and transparent compression implementation with URLs in my resume.Who knows if someone in NetApp decided to pull the good ideas from that into their product – ha.

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