Ceph, the open source distributed file system that is playing an increasingly important role in the world of Big Data despite its young age, took another step into the cloud with the announcement of the general availability of the DreamObjects cloud storage system from DreamHost. The update follows a beta version of the service that launched last September, but brings with it expanded offerings and incentives.

When DreamObjects debuted several months ago, it was designed to attract customers with simple flat-rate pricing and an emphasis on the flexibility that the platform derived, in part, from its open source core. It enjoyed quick endorsement from Inktank, which was created last May as a spinoff of DreamHost but now operates as an independent entity focused primarily on the development of Ceph and related support services. (Inktank also, incidentally, received a $1 million investment from Ubuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth right around the time of the DreamObjects launch.) Canonical also announced promises to integrate it into an Ubuntu-based cloud platform, although nothing public has been said about that since.

As of Tuesday, DreamObjects has now transformed from beta mode into full availability. Pricing remains the same, and DreamHost is offering some nice incentives to attract additional customers to the platform, including an extra Gigabyte of storage for customers who sign up for the free multifactor authentication feature, which the company plugs as a major security enhancement. DreamHost promises that "more GB-free and other promotional offers" will be forthcoming from it and its partners.

So far, according to the company, demand has been steady across the board. In a statement, DreamHost cited customer use cases for DreamObjects ranging from website backup to storing personal data to hosting applications.

DreamObjects is only one component of DreamHost's broader cloud-focused portfolio. The company also offers an OpenStack-based computing service called DreamCompute. By integrating storage services alongside cloud computing, DreamHost aims to attract organizations seeking a comprehensive cloud solution.

DreamHost, of course, is only one of myriad vendors trying to secure a slice of the cloud-computing pie. But it stands out for its intense focus on founding its solutions upon open source technologies, especially Ceph--which is a relatively young project, even in the world of the cloud, where many platforms have reached maturity only in the last year or two. But Ceph has enjoyed growing popularity, thanks in particular to its promotion by Inktank, that has placed it at the center of a range of partnerships within and beyond the open source channel, including with names as big as SUSE and Citrix.