AI and ML - Product

WEKA Alternative with Quobyte – A Comparison

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Like Quobyte, Weka (also known as wekaFS or is a high-performance parallel file system with a native protocol. Both products are software storage and also run on the cloud, and both products are suitable for demanding workloads like machine learning/deep learning, generative AI, or life science applications.

However, that is where the similarities between weka and Quobyte end. Quobyte has a strong focus on exceptional simplicity to ensure that you can operate large scale clusters with small teams even in the 100s of petabytes.

A major advantage of Quobyte are the non-disruptive operations: Updating the software, hardware maintenance, restarts of servers and services, adding or removing servers, migrating or tiring data: All of these operations can be done without any downtime, giving users the benefit of high-performance storage with enterprise availability. In contrast, weka doesn’t offer non-disruptive updates, or the ability to remove drives and servers from a cluster without short interruptions of services.


Reduced TCO with Quobyte’s simplicity compared to

Compared to WEKA, Quobyte is easier to install and run in production for a number of reasons:

  • Non-disruptive operations allow administrators to work without maintenance windows at any time.
  • Quobyte does not require kernel modules on the client or server side. A simple packet install and easy updates at any time. Security patches and switching to newer kernel versions is easy and non-disruptive with Quobyte.
  • Native user-land drivers for Linux, Windows and macOS deliver high performance IO to all platforms without the need for additional NFS or SMB gateways
  • Unlike WEKA, Quobyte runs over any IP network and with any network card and can automatically take advantage of RDMA where available.
  • Quobyte runs on a broad range of hardware – where WEKA has very specific hardware requirements. This allows you to select the hardware that fits your preferences and needs. In addition, you can streamline your data center by reducing the number of server configurations with Quobyte.

The simplicity on the operational side leads to a lower TCO compared to complex parallel file systems like WEKA. Or, to put it more bluntly: WEKA’s complexity will make it expensive to operate, especially at scale.


Quobyte’s high performance NVMe and HDD support as an alternative to WEKA’s expensive external tiering

When it comes to storage media and cost, Quobyte provides native support for multiple NVMe tiers and HDD in the same cluster with automatic, policy based tiering. In contrast to WEKA’s external tiering, users and administrators benefit from:

  • High performance from parallel IO directly on the HDD tier instead of waiting for data to be paged in from an external (slow) storage system
  • Flexibility to take advantage of e.g. QLC flash and HDD to provide optimal cost and performance for a variety of workloads
  • Reduced cost and operational complexity since no external storage system is required for HDD storage. In addition to the high cost of WEKA, there are significant additional expenses for a secondary storage system (license and operational cost) plus additional hardware resources.
  • Quobyte supports servers with a mix of NVMe and HDD for optimal cost and streamlined data center operations.

Automatic Data Management and Analytics in Quobyte vs. Weka

On the data management side, Quobyte provides a wealth of functionality to give you insight and control over your data, which is lacking in WekaFS.

With integrated analytics, Quobyte gives you insight into workloads and IO consumers down to a file level. This does not only help admins to track down issues, but also enables them to make data-driven decisions for optimizing storage performance and management.

The Quobyte policy engine gives admins full control over data placement, tiering, life cycle management and many other aspects of the storage system. In addition, admins also have the ability to change policies and data placement at any time to adapt to new or changing requirements. These changes and any necessary data movement is also non-disruptive.


Fast Metadata Queries for very large data sets with Quobyte

Unlike WEKA, Quobyte enables users and administrators to quickly find files with a high-performance parallel query engine that directly operates on the file metadata. Finding files in your billions of files is now just a matter of minutes.

Quobyte’s file query engine can also search through custom file metadata (extended attributes and S3 metadata), which makes it suitable for applications like AI/ML data labeling.


Truly integrated S3 service instead of a competitor’s product on top of WEKA

Quobyte’s object storage service is custom built by Quobyte and fully integrated. Files are fully accessible as objects and vice versa, without any footnotes. To simplify the management, the access control is unified so that S3 ACLs don’t need to be managed separately. Similarly, S3 custom metadata is stored in the file’s extended attributes (xattrs) and can be read and modified from the file system and S3 concurrently.

In contrast, WEKA uses the open-source version of MinIO to provide an S3 access layer. Using the product of a WEKA competitor (MinIO) means that it lacks proper integration: Access control for the S3-layer is not integrated with the file system and there are restrictions to how files can be shared as objects and vice versa.


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…and benefit from high-performance for demanding workloads without the complexity of WEKA. AI projects that involve machine learning like deep learning or generative AI should not be distracted by complex storage operations. Learn how Quobyte can help you deliver high performance storage with exceptional quality and availability.

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