With big data finally becoming mainstream and adoption growing in global enterprises in all industries, the requirements for resilience and robustness of the applications have increased. Today, there is an underserved need for more mature approaches to data protection and disaster recovery. Vendors that address these issues as part of their offerings will see greater acceptance by their customers’ IT operations teams, but everyone must do more to improve their capabilities for better reliability and business continuity.
One significant challenge with big data is the complexity of architecting and assembling a complete technology stack to support companies’ analytics initiatives. Pivotal addresses this with its broad portfolio of interlocked data platform and agile development offerings, including alliances with strong connections to EMC, Isilon, and VMware, and participation in the Cloud Foundry community for a ready PaaS environment in their own version, Pivotal CF. Recently announced enhancements to its products go further in establishing Pivotal’s position as a solution leader in the big data market. Although further integration is needed to realize the solution’s full potential, the vision is compelling.
In a command-and-control world where IT could simply impose technology choices, usability and adoption were considered afterthoughts. Consumerization is now driving usability and adoption to the top tier of application evaluation criteria.
The long anticipated Box S1, a key milestone in the company’s path to an IPO, provides deep insight into Box’s business model and progress in signing up enterprise accounts. Box has certainly had some success, but it needs to ramp up its strategy a bit to see profitability on the horizon. Key to Box’s long-term success is that it convert free users to paid, reducing its cost of sales and marketing while driving revenue growth. Since a lot of free consumer-class online file sharing and collaboration solutions are available, Box’s best chance at converting users to paid accounts is to identify those using Box in business settings who can appreciate the value in leveraging Box’s sharing, collaboration, and ease of use to accelerate business processes. Box also needs to make some key investments in order to speed IT adoption and acceptance, and accelerate sales.
Last Fall, at SpiceWorld, Pertino announced its cloud-based network services solution and network app store, AppScape. Focused primarily on small to medium business customers, Pertino’s solution is able to deliver people-centric, enterprise-class network control and visibility from anywhere, and on any device. As with all pioneering products, Pertino must focus on communicating its technology and value to educate prospective buyers on the power and usefulness of its product.
VMware’s much heralded “Virtual SAN”—the hypervisor-managed provisioning of shared storage using pooled server storage capacity—is another line in the sand regarding the future of IT in general and storage in particular. VMware’s new product adds further clarity to the notion that convergence driven by software is a real direction—and a real choice—not only for the provisioning of business IT infrastructure, but also for the management of that infrastructure. While the functionality of the product still have room to grow, the simplicity and economy of Virtual SAN represents clear writing on the (software-defined data center) wall that traditional storage models are under threat.
Consumerization of IT and BYOD have IT walking a delicate line. How does IT empower employees to be productive and use the devices they want, yet keep data protected and secure? It also makes it increasingly difficult to meet compliance mandates when data is scattered across the enterprise on employees’ multiple endpoint devices. It is a difficult challenge to meet, but companies like Acronis are stepping up to the plate to offer solutions that enable organizations to keep employees working the way they want while meeting security compliance requirements.
ESG data indicates that many enterprise organizations are not only consuming commercial threat intelligence, but also using it to improve risk management. In fact, advanced organizations seem to include security intelligence as a best practice as they claim to get a lot of value from external security intelligence. While this is encouraging, the fact remains that not all security intelligence is created equally. New independent security intelligence services from providers like Norse are starting to emerge in the market. This type of intelligence can provide real-time, detailed intelligence focused on cybercriminal activities. Enterprise organizations can use this type of focused data to make timely risk management decisions, automate security operations, and improve incident detection/response.
Pure Storage—a leading general-purpose, all-flash solution vendor—has just announced its “Forever Flash” program, which is an amalgam of acquisition, maintenance/support, and non-disruptive system upgradability choices. This flexible arrangement between the vendor and its customers not only streamlines and makes explicit a traditionally obfuscated area, but also offers a choice between Opex- and Capex-optimized approaches. This offering should appeal to any Pure user who is looking to manage and constrain costs or uncertainty, while retaining control of, and flexibility in, her storage infrastructure. Pure’s existing and potential customers should evaluate this new program; if they are generally happy with Pure and expect to be committed to Pure, then their share of the mutual benefits of the Forever Flash approach will be a welcome practical bonus.
As big data continues to grow in volume and importance, many businesses are looking for the optimal building blocks on which to deploy a solution. There is no shortage of vendors keen to provide their tools, but not all have the same depth of functionality to meet both application needs and operational requirements. With its recent version 7 release, MarkLogic has developed a robust NoSQL database capable of satisfying enterprise customer expectations.