DCIG’s analysts (myself included) have lately spent a great deal of time getting up close and personal on the capabilities of public cloud providers such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud. We have also spent time talking to individuals deploying cloud solutions. As we have done so, we recognize that the capabilities of these cloud offerings should meet and exceed the expectations of most organizations regardless of their size. However, impeding their cloud adoption are three concerns that have little to do with the technical capabilities of these products.
Living in Omaha, Nebraska, one cannot help but be influenced by Berkshire Hathaway and its CEO, Warren Buffett, one of the wealthiest men in the world, when it comes to making investment decisions. However, the process that Berkshire Hathaway uses to make investment decisions has multiple other applications to include helping guide you in making decisions about which cloud technologies to adopt and when
Business are finally adopting public cloud because a large and rapidly growing catalog of services is now available from multiple cloud providers. These two factors have many implications for businesses. This article addresses four of these implications plus several cloud-specific risks.
In between my travels, doing research, and taking some time off in May, I also spent time getting up to speed on Amazon Web Services by studying for the AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associated exam in anticipation of DCIG doing more public cloud-focused competitive research. While I know it is no secret that cloud adoption has taken off in recent years, what has puzzled me during this time is, “Why is it now that have enterprises finally started to embrace public clouds?”
Amazon, Google, and Microsoft have staked their claims as the Big 3 as providers of enterprise cloud services with their respective AWS, Cloud, and Azure offerings. Enter Nutanix. It has from Day 1 sought to emulate AWS with its on-premise cloud offering. But with the announcements made at its .NEXT conference last week in New Orleans, companies can look for Nutanix to deliver cloud services both on- and off-premise that should fundamentally change how enterprises view Nutanix going forward.
Ransomware gets a lot of press – and for good reason – because when hackers break through your firewalls, encrypt your data, and make you pay up or else lose your data, it rightfully gets people’s attention. But hackers probably have less desire than most to be in the public eye and sensationalized ransomware headlines bring them unwanted attention. That’s why some hackers have said goodbye to the uncertainty of a payout associated with getting a ransom for your data and instead look to access your servers to do some bitcoin mining using your CPUs.
The exhibit halls at the annual National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show in Las Vegas always contain eye-popping displays highlighting recent technological advances as well as what is coming down the path in the world of media and entertainment. But behind NAB’s glitz and glamour lurks a hard, cold reality; every word recorded, every picture taken, and every scene filmed must be stored somewhere, usually multiple times, and available at a moment’s notice. It is these halls at the NAB show that DCIG visited where it identified two start-ups with storage technologies poised to disrupt business as usual.
Amazon has made significant progress in the last few years to dispel the notion that Amazon Web Services (AWS) primary purpose is as a repository for archives and backups. During this time, it has demonstrated time and time again it is well suited to host even the most demanding of production applications. However, what companies may still fail to realize is just how far beyond being a leading provider of cloud storage services that AWS has become. Here are some recent cool new offerings and features available from AWS that indicate how far it has come in terms of positioning itself to host enterprise applications of any type as well as satisfy specific enterprise demands.
No business – and I mean no business – regardless of its size ever wants to experience an outage for any reason or duration. However, to completely avoid outages means spending money and, in most cases, a lot of money. That is why, when someone shared with me earlier this week, that one of their clients has put in place a solution that keeps their period of downtime to what appears as a ‘glitch’ to their end-users for nominal cost, it struck a chord with me.
DCIG is pleased to announce the availability of the DCIG 2017-18 Cloud Data Protection Appliance Buyer’s Guide developed from the backup appliance body of research. The DCIG 2017-18 Cloud Data Protection Appliance Buyer’s Guide weights, scores and ranks more than 100 features of twenty-two (22) products from six (6) vendors. Using ranking categories of Recommended and Excellent, this Buyer’s Guide offers much of the information an organization should need to make a highly-informed decision as to which cloud data protection appliance will suit their needs.
Vendors first started bandying about the phrase “cloud data management” a year or so ago. While that phrase caught my attention, specifics as what one should expect when acquiring a “cloud data management” solution remained nebulous at best. Fast forward to this week’s Veritas Vision 2017 and I finally encountered a vendor that was providing meaningful details as to what cloud data management encompasses while simultaneously performing a 180 behind the scenes.
In recent months and years, many have come to question VMware’s commitment to public clouds and containers used by enterprise data centers (EDCs). No one disputes that VMware has a solid footprint in EDCs and that it is in no immediate danger of being displaced. However, many have wondered how or if it will engage with public cloud providers such as Amazon as well as how it would address threats posed by Docker. At VMworld 2017, VMware showed new love for these two technologies that should help to alleviate these concerns.
The phrase “Cloud Data Protection Appliance” is included in the name of DCIG’s forthcoming Buyer’s Guide but the end game of each appliance covered in that Guide is squarely on recovery. While successful recoveries have theoretically always been the objective of backup appliances, vendors too often only paid lip service to that ideal as most of their new product features centered on providing better means for doing backups. Recent technology advancements have flipped this premise on its head.
The business case for organizations with petabytes of file data under management to classify and then place it across multiple tiers of storage has never been greater. By distributing this data across disk, flash, tape and the cloud, they stand to realize significant cost savings. The catch is finding a cost-effective solution that makes it easier to administer and manage file data than simply storing it all on flash storage. This is where a solution such as what Quantum now offers come into play.
As recently as a few years ago support for private and/or public cloud storage providers by enterprise data protection products was still a hit-or-miss proposition. Those days are essentially over. The vast majority of products minimally leverage cloud providers as cloud storage targets and, in many cases, use them for more advanced recovery options. But as support for the cloud has become commonplace, three specific new features appear on more of these products making them more flexible, manageable, and scalable while also serving to foretell what all these products will offer in the very near future.
There are two assumptions that IT professionals need to exercise caution before making when evaluating cloud data protection products. One is to assume all products share some feature or features in common. The other is to assume that one product possesses some feature or characteristic that no other product on the market offers. As DCIG reviews its recent research into the cloud data protection products, one cannot make either one of these assumptions, even on features such as deduplication, encryption, and replication that one might expect to be universally adopted by these products in comparable ways.
Backup products have always sought to differentiate themselves by offering specific features that met different organizational needs. But at the end of the day, backup products primarily had to account for protecting the data that organizations had with these products placing a lower priority on recovery and cloud connectivity. Those days are largely over with all backup products (save a few) having transformed to offer cloud data protection with many of them providing a variety of cloud recovery options.
Ever since I got my first job in IT in the mid-1990’s, everyone has used a cloud in some form. Whether they referred to it as outsourcing, virtualization, central IT, or in some other way, the cloud existed and grew but it did little to stem the adoption of distributed computing. Yet at some point over the past few years, the parallel growth of these two technologies stopped and the cloud forged ahead. This shift indicates that companies have now fully embraced the cloud but remain unclear about how best and how soon to transition their IT infrastructure to the cloud and then manage it once it is there.
Today’s backup mantra seems to be backup to the cloud or bust! But backup to the cloud is more than just redirecting backup streams from a local file share to a file share presented by a cloud storage provider and clicking the “Start” button. Organizations must examine to which cloud storage providers they can send their data as well as how their backup software packages and sends the data to the cloud. BackupAssist 10.0 answers many of these tough questions about cloud data protection that businesses face while providing them some welcomed flexibility in their choice of cloud storage providers.
Last week HPE announced its acquisition of SimpliVity, a provider of enterprise hyper-converged infrastructure solutions. While that announcement certainly made news in the IT industry, the broader implications of this acquisition signaled that enterprise IT providers such as HPE could no longer sit on the sidelines and merely be content to partner with providers such as SimpliVity as hyper-converged solutions rapidly become a growing percentage of enterprise IT. If HPE wanted its fair share of this market, it was imperative that it act sooner rather than later to ensure it remained a leading player in this rapidly growing market.