TechEnablement caught up with Seven10 Storage Software’s CTO Chris Magyar to speak about their enterprise software that claims to “make data migrations painless and cloud access effortless”. Enterprise computing is moving to both private and public clouds to realize the benefits of “data everywhere”. Seven10 Storage software makes this possible by providing a unified information management system that can seamlessly migrate data while the data is still in use. In other words, customers can seamlessly move their “big data” to the cloud without interrupting business operations and later manage it online via the Seven10 information management system. Seven10 notes that they are a proven vendor with successes in healthcare, finance and other compliance-driven markets.
“The key is our multi-tiered archival file system that can be used in conjunction or independently of our data migration capabilities”, said Chris. Data is initially provisioned from the legacy storage by inventorying existing file-systems content for the Seven10 gateway(s). After that, all data accesses can be intercepted by the Seven10 file-system that can be accessed via SMB/CIFS, NFS, or as a per-machine Windows file-system driver. To meet the requirements of archival applications that were incompatible with existing Windows NFS implementations, Seven10 created its own NFS V3 implementation. The Seven10 gateway can then seamlessly migrate data as directed by the unified information management system and redirect application file-system requests to the correct data location be it on legacy storage, public cloud, or private cloud.
“Chris told TechEnablement that the Seven10 solution is designed for, “archiving large quantities of unstructured data, typified by high file/directory counts and total storage capacities”. Seven10 is not designed to support high-transaction storage like databases, but rather “the bulk – roughly 85% – of enterprise needs and to provide with compliance with HIPAA regulations and ARRA mandates”. Current deployments demonstrate scalability in organizations “with hundreds to thousands of users.”
From the CTO’s point of view, Chris pointed out that “the solution uses a scale-up model, using partitioning to provide a dedicated gateway as a point of access for each of the many archival applications deployed in today’s enterprises”. In short, namespace partitioning a provides a strong-scaling model acros Seven10 gateways so organizations can scale as-needed for larger deployments.
From a customer point of view, the Seven10 solution exists as middle-ware between archival applications and the storage, which means no storage vendor lock-in. Chris noted that Seven10 supports virtually all forms of storage, from block (disk/tape/VTL) to file (local/CIFS/NFS) to object (CAS, Cloud). This means that customers are not locked in to their current choice of storage technology, and can easily add storage tiers or move to new storage platforms. Seven10 also supports migration off tape archives.
Licensing is one-time fee based on a per-managed terabyte of data regardless of where the data lives (e.g. on-site on the customers local storage or off-site) plus a support contract. Customers are not locked-out from their data if they let the support contract expire, but total capacity is constrained by their licensed capacity.
Seven10’s software is designed to mitigate risk when complying with HIPAA regulations and ARRA mandates that includes:
- Multiple layers of security including encryption, file-locking, retention, multi-platform replication, portability, hashing, self-audits, tiering and write-once
- Excellent flexibility as the Storfirst file systems offer built-in native support of block and file-based disk, CAS, Cloud (via REST) and even Tape or VTL
- The ability to retire and/or refresh their current storage platform by supplying secure data migrations that deliver uninterrupted access and guarantee against data loss
The Seven10 solution supports robust enterprise operations including backup and recovery; High-availability, continuous inventory, and more.
Backup and Recovery
Seven10’s competitors are typically single tier cloud gateways or migration services such as:
The Seven10 Storfirst product differentiates itself from the competition with:
- Support for all major storage technologies, including cloud storage providers as well as existing on-premise storage (SAN/Local File/NAS/CAS/Object/Tape/VTL)
- Unified storage as SMB/CIFS and/or NFS, establishing a standard communication path between applications and storage
- Automated data archiving and access across local storage and cloud storage
- Built-in intelligence that provides immediate access regardless of storage type or location
- Advanced security with immutability, hashing, encryption, retention and Active Directory Support
- Natively integrated with HP OpenStack Cloud Storage, Amazon S3 and several proprietary RESTful Cloud API’s.
- The ability to ‘assimilate’ existing file-based archival storage and transparently migrate production data from legacy storage to one or more tiers of new storage
- The ability to replicate archived data across tiers of current of future storage
- Custom integration enables direct object migration from Centera in environments using several different Centera File System Gateways (CUA, CFA, DiskXtender)
For information about Seven10 in action, please see the following customer use cases and the Seven10 website: