The Mac Observer

Skip navigational links

You're viewing an article in TMO's historic archive vault. Here, we've preserved the comments and how the site looked along with the article. Use this link to view the article on our current site:
Blackfriar Marketing: ZFS is Solution to Apple's Disk Storage Problems [UPDATED]

Blackfriar Marketing: ZFS is Solution to Apple's Disk Storage Problems [UPDATED]

by , 1:30 PM EDT, October 10th, 2007

Apple has recognized the problems users are having with massive storage, managing hundreds of thousands of files, and backing it all up. The answer is Sun Microsystem's ZFS file system, according to Carl Howe of Blackfriars Communications on Wednesday.

"The simplest way to describe ZFS is that it is a complete rethink of how computers store information ..." Mr. How wrote. "It believes that users being aware of disks is so last century. ZFS deems all your disks a 'pool' of storage. It manages those disks for you; you only deal with files. Want to add more storage? Just add another disk to the pool, and ZFS knows what to do. Want to replace a disk? Tell ZFS to remove it from the pool, and it clears it off for you. You don't know where or how many copies the system is storing -- you just know that they are always there for you."

The result of all this, according to Mr. Howe, is that Apple will be able to solve the problems associated with terabyte drives in the home, assist with snapshotting the OS and bringing it back to a previous state, and manage offsite backups in an elegant way.

Back in 2000, Mr. Howe warned computer vendors in a Forrester report that, "they needed to make fundamental changes in how they sold and implemented storage to avoid their customers being overwhelmed by the tsunami of storage and its management headaches this decade."

"Apple's strategy of incorporating ZFS into Mac OS X demonstrates they've identified storage as a problem and will try to solve it in an elegant way. The big question is how long it will be before the rest of the personal computer industry wakes up," Mr. Howe concluded.

TMO notes that there have been several stories published in the past about whether Apple would, in fact, include ZFS with Mac OS X at some point.

[UPDATE: This story was edited for clarity.]

Recent TMO Headlines - Updated March 28th

Tue, 11:01 AM
Element Blocks: The Coolest Periodic Table for Your Desk
Tue, 9:15 AM
watchOS 3.2 Adds Theater Mode, SiriKit
Tue, 9:00 AM
ExoMount CD Car Mount for Smartphones: $19.99
Tue, 8:49 AM
macOS: Creating an App-Specific Password for iCloud
Mon, 7:43 PM
Pages for macOS: Always Start New Documents With Specific Template
Mon, 7:33 PM
Password Protection Comes To Pages, Numbers, Keynotes on iOS, Mac, iCloud
Mon, 3:57 PM
TMO Background Mode Interview with Microsoft Chief Creative Architect Ben Rudolph
Mon, 3:27 PM
Britain's Home Secretary Pushes for Encryption Back Door
Mon, 2:44 PM
Apple TV Remote Update Adds iPad Support, More
Mon, 2:36 PM
macOS: Accented Letters Are Surprisingly Easy to Type
Mon, 2:22 PM
Apple Releases macOS 10.12.4 with Night Shift, Cricket Scores, Enterprise Features
Mon, 2:20 PM
Apple Releases tvOS 10.2 with Watch Anywhere Video Rental Support
  • __________
  • Buy Stuff, Support TMO!
  • Podcast: Mac Geek Gab
  • Podcast: Apple Weekly Report
  • TMO on Twitter!