Hybrid Data Management (Video)

Steve Still.pngI've been ranting recently about how if you knew then what you know now about all things infrastructure, you would never ever do things the way you're doing them. I don't care if it's about taking 8,000 copies of the same never-changing data in a backup operation, or replicating the same information from box to box to box across the globe to support some S.L.A. or business outcome that originated with a request from 1985. We spend way too much time doing things the way we know how to do, and not doing things the way they should be. For example's sake and because I'm lazy, I'll stick with storage. 

Watch the video for my thoughts on hybrid data management.

Video Transcript

Hi, I've been ranting recently about how if you knew then what you know now about all things infrastructure, you would never ever do things the way you're doing them. I don't care if it's about taking 8,000 copies of the same never-changing data in a backup operation, or replicating the same information from box to box to box across the globe to support some S.L.A. or business outcome that originated with a request from 1985. We spend way too much time doing things the way we know how to do, and not doing things the way they should be. For example's sake and because I'm lazy, I'll stick with storage.

Here are some undeniable facts that you may not like. If your company was born more than three years ago, there was no such thing as pure public cloud services. 99% of the world does now, and will for the foreseeable future, live in a hybrid cloud world. You will have stuff on-premise, you'll use public cloud infrastructure, and you may even think that it's private. You will live as a hybrid or as a dinosaur. Those are really the only two options. We will eventually grow up to realize we have to manage our data assets in a hybrid, fluid world, and stop thinking we can manage each physical or virtual piece as a discrete component. You can't. You have way too much data, and quite frankly, it's dumb anyway.

For example, storage is still treated in a very, no pun intended, binary way. We still talk protocols. Millennials don't talk protocols, business people don't talk protocols, but storage infrastructure people still do. Don't restrict what I can store where because of protocols. If it speaks file, great, let whatever I'm speaking to on-premise or in the cloud speak file. N.F.S., S.M.B., I don't care. If I speak object, let me speak object. If I code to S3, don't make me think about where I have to put things. Learn to just say yes. You can decide the policy for the data I create, and that policy can determine where something resides, based on whatever criteria that keeps people happy. Performance, security, access, availability etc. You can retain it, delete it, bastardize it, copy it, and ship it off to the planet Nebulon if you want, but don't make me think twice about it. There should be no real storage management, there should only be data management. Data management has business value, low level storage management doesn't. No offense.

While I think it should be truly universal, that is both block and file--note: more protocols--I'm a realist. So let's just solve for unstructured data now. Eliminate unnecessary protocol obstacles. A car should drive like a car no matter what language the street signs are in. Point me to a store and let me do my thing. Behind the scenes, automate data management functions that matter. Where it sits, when it moves, how it behaves, based on high business value analytics. And by which I mean, your brain. Let Amazon or Google or whoever do what they do. They're just another tier in your hybrid store, with very limited value. You control the data management high value function, by creating the rules and policies specific to the data itself, and then, you automate those actions.

This isn't futuristic, it absolutely is reality today. Do you really think Microsoft puts your stuff on one specific node in Azure and leaves it there? Don't be silly. In the New World Order, the administrator is the data controller at the highest level. You set the policies. You use tools to enforce and ensure those policies are carried out, but you are in control, or you should be. If not, you're letting Amazon make decisions that you really might not want made. I don't care if it's RAM, flash, a white-box, a black-box, or out in the ether. As long as it gives me the access, sharing, performance, and availability I need, when I need it. And to let you in on a little secret, no one else cares either. Bye.