Open source storage has come a long way in the last few years. There are good open source offerings on the backup, mirroring, file system, NAS and storage virtualization side. It is possible to cobble together an awful lot of disks and run them at high performance without the need for state-of-the-art hardware. Even companies known for proprietary offerings like EMC are on board.
"EMC most often encounters open source in the form of a Linux-based host connected to our storage products," said Jay Krone, senior director of storage platforms at EMC. "Customers are purchasing Intel- or AMD-based servers and putting Linux on them to take best advantage of volume pricing on the hardware and minimal-to-no licensing costs on the software..."