Performance of Local Storage vs Object Storage when storing Media Files

We currently have a system wherein we store our user generated content(mostly photos)* around half a million* on the droplet’s file storage in subdirectories. We are planning to move the photos to DO Spaces / S3 etc for better scalability. I was wondering if there would be some performance gains as well if stored on an object storage (like spaces) while serving these media files on the client apps. Essentially want to understand that if there are any performance related issues in storing files in the droplet’s local storage and if there would be some performance gains by moving to an object storage based solution other than the cost / scalability related benefits. Thanks for answering!

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January 22, 2024

Heya, @platestheapp

The Object Storage is well-suited for storing large media files like videos, images, and audio clips so this can be a suitable solution for you.

Object storage is a data storage architecture that manages data as objects, as opposed to the block or file storage methods. Each object includes the data itself, metadata, and a unique identifier. Object storage is particularly useful for storing large amounts of unstructured data, such as videos, photos, and documents, and is commonly used in cloud storage environments.

Pros of object storage

  • Excellent scalability. Allows for seamless addition of new storage nodes, making it highly scalable.
  • Handles large data volumes. Especially well-suited for storing massive amounts of unstructured data.
  • Cloud-friendly. Optimal for big data and cloud-based applications due to its scalable design.

Cons of object storage

  • Lower performance for specific use-cases. Not ideal for applications requiring low-latency, random access to data.
  • Complexity in traditional environments. May not be easily integrated into existing infrastructures that are not cloud-based.
  • Metadata management. While metadata is a strength, it can become a management challenge as data scales.

Object storage is a strong contender for certain types of data storage needs, offering particular advantages for specific scenarios. Knowing when to use object storage can maximize its benefits and better align with your organizational goals.

Here are some instances where object storage makes sense:

  • Big data analytics. Ideal for storing and analyzing large volumes of unstructured data.
  • Cloud-native applications. Object storage is designed to scale easily, making it a good fit for cloud-based services.
  • Media storage. Well-suited for storing large files like videos, images, and audio clips.
  • Archival storage. Its scalable nature makes it a good fit for long-term storage solutions.
  • Content distribution. The metadata and unique identifiers allow for efficient distribution and retrieval of data.

Hope that this helps!

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