Standards Portfolio

SNIA develops a wide range of standards to enhance the interoperability of various storage systems.

Cloud Data Management Interface (CDMI)

The Cloud Data Management Interface defines the functional interface that applications will use to create, retrieve, update and delete data elements from the Cloud. As part of this interface the client will be able to discover the capabilities of the cloud storage offering and use this interface to manage containers and the data that is placed in them. In addition, metadata can be set on containers and their contained data elements through this interface.

This interface is also used by administrative and management applications to manage containers, accounts, security access and monitoring/billing information, even for storage that is accessible by other protocols. The capabilities of the underlying storage and data services are exposed so that clients can understand the offering.

Common RAID Disk Data Format (DDF)

The Common RAID Disk Data Format specification defines a standard data structure describing how data is formatted across the disks in a RAID group. The Disk Data Format (DDF) structure allows a basic level of interoperability between different suppliers of RAID technology. The Common RAID DDF structure benefits storage users by enabling data-in-place migration among systems from different vendors.

Linear Tape File System (LTFS) Format Specification

The LTFS Format Specification defines a file system format separate from any implementation on data storage media. Using this format, data is stored in LTFS Volumes. An LTFS Volume holds data files and corresponding metadata to completely describe the directory and file structures stored on the volume.
The LTFS Format has these features:
An LTFS Volume can be mounted and volume content accessed with full use of the data without the need to access other information sources.

  • Data can be passed between sites and applications using only the information written to an LTFS Volume.
  • Files can be written to, and read from, an LTFS Volume using standard POSIX file operations.

The LTFS Format is particularly suited to these usages:

  • Data export and import.
  • Data interchange and exchange.
  • Direct file and partial file recall from sequential access media.
  • Archival storage of files using a simplified, self-contained or “self-describing” format on sequential access media.

iSCSI Management API (IMA)

 The iSCSI Management API defines a standard interface that applications can use to perform iSCSI management independent of the vendor of the iSCSI HBA. The IMA was designed to be implemented using a combination of a library and plugins.

An IMA library provides the interface that applications use to perform iSCSI management. Among other things, the library is responsible for loading plugins and dispatching requests from a management application to the appropriate plugin(s). Plugins are provided by iSCSI HBA vendors to manage their hardware. Typically, a plugin will take a request in the generic format provided by the library and then translate that request into a vendor specific format and forward the request onto the vendor’s device driver. In practice, a plugin may use a DLL or shared object library to communicate with the device driver. Also, it may communicate with multiple device drivers. Ultimately, the method a plugin uses to accomplish its work is entirely vendor specific.

Multipath Management API (MMA)

The Multipath Management API allows a management application to discover the multipath devices on the current system and to discover the associated local and device ports.  An implementation of the API may optionally include active management (failover, load balancing, manual path overrides). The API uses an architecture that allows multiple MP drivers installed on a system to each provide plugins to a common library. The plugins can support multipath drivers bundled with an OS, or drivers associated with an HBA, target device, or volume manager. This API can be used by host-based management applications and will also be included in the SMI-S Host Discovered Resources Profile for enterprise-wide multipath discovery and management.  A client of the API should be able to move between platforms by simply recompiling.

NVM Programming Model

The NVM Programming Model was developed to address the ongoing proliferation of new non-volatile memory (NVM) functionality and new NVM technologies. An extensible NVM Programming Model is necessary to enable an industry wide community of NVM producers and consumers to move forward together through a number of significant storage and memory system architecture changes.

This specification defines recommended behavior between various user space and operating system (OS) kernel components supporting NVM. This specification does not describe a specific API. Instead, the intent is to enable common NVM behavior to be exposed by multiple operating system specific interfaces.

SFF TA TWG Specifications

The family of SNIA SFF TA TWG specifications are for storage media, storage networks, and pluggable solutions that complement existing industry standards work that encompass cables, connectors, form factor sizes and housing dimensions, management interfaces, transceiver interfaces, electrical interfaces, and related technologies.  The specifications enable technology vendors to procure compatible, multi-sourced products and solutions.  Click here to access specification repository, 

SNIA Emerald™ Power Efficiency Measurement Specification

The purpose of the SNIA Emerald™ Power Efficiency Measurement Specification is to provide a reproducible and standardized assessment of the energy efficiency of commercial storage products in both active and idle states.

Solid State Storage (SSS) Performance Test Specification (PTS)

 The SNIA has developed methods which enable manufacturers to set, and customers to compare, the performance specifications of Solid State Storage devices, which are evolving with the state of the technology. The Solid State Storage Performance Test Specifications define a set of device level tests and methodologies which enable comparative testing of SSS devices for Enterprise and Client systems.

Storage Management Initiative Specification (SMI-S)

The Storage Management Initiative Specification defines a method for the interoperable management of  heterogeneous networked storage.

TLS Specification for Storage Systems

This document specifies the requirements and guidance for use of the Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol in conjunction with data storage technologies. The requirements are intended to facilitate secure interoperability of storage clients and servers as well as non-storage technologies that may have similar interoperability needs. This document was developed with the expectation that future versions of SMI-S and CDMI could leverage these requirements to ensure consistency between these standards as well as to more rapidly adjust the security functionality in these standards.

eXtensible Access Method (XAM)

The XAM  Interface specification defines a standard access method (API) between "Consumers" (application and management software) and "Providers" (storage systems) to manage fixed content reference information storage services. XAM includes metadata definitions to accompany data to achieve application interoperability, storage transparency, and automation for ILM-based practices, long term records retention, and information security. XAM will be expanded over time to include other data types as well as support additional implementations based on the XAM API to XAM conformant storage systems.