The whole truth
On June 20, enterprise data protection company Veritas Technologies announced its Enterprise Data Services Platform, powered by Veritas NetBackup 8.2. This unified set of technologies is designed to reduce the complexity of enterprise IT by enabling users to take control of, protect and gain insight into recoverable data in on-prem and cloud environments. Integrated technologies include NetBackup 8.2, which enables enterprises to protect, back-up, recover, manage and apply policies to business data; Veritas InfoScale, which provides resiliency and software-defined storage for hybrid clouds; the Veritas Information Studio unified information intelligence tool; and APTARE IT analytics. Following the launch – or mega-launch as Veritas styles it – Technology Reseller caught up with Jamie Farrelly, VP of EMEA Channels at Veritas, to discuss the company’s new platform.
Technology Reseller: Please could you give a quick overview of Veritas’s approach to data management and explain how the new platform fits within its overall strategy.
Jamie Farrelly (JF): At Veritas, we think about the data challenge and opportunities in five ways: we talk about data growth, the explosion of data; we talk about data fragmentation – data sitting in all kinds of different places; we talk about the opportunity around data agility, which IDC describes as a multi-billion dollar opportunity, harnessing the power of your data and making intelligent decisions based on the data in your organisation.
The final two, which are equally important, are data compliance and data visibility – if you don’t know what you have, if you can’t see it, then there’s not much you can do with it. Data is the oil of the twenty-first century; it is the most important thing an organisation has apart from its people.
It’s these five things, at a high level, that Veritas strives to drive simplicity and value around.
A couple of interesting stats we used in our mega-launch that put the data issue into perspective are that by 2025 there will be 175 zettabytes of data on the planet (enough data to fill 2.6 trillion 64GB smartphones). Then, in our latest Value of Data study, CIOs we surveyed said that 62% of that data is completely dark. So, as they move from on premise to the cloud, from data centres to remote, they don’t even know what the cost of managing their data will be.
Furthermore, as we go into the cloud world, 75% of organisations believe that the cloud CSPs, the cloud vendors, are responsible for the integrity of that data. But they are not; that is still on you as the customer. So, there’s a huge opportunity for Veritas and its customers to harness and gain visibility of data and to set policies around what they do with it to add value or to drive reduced risk or increased possibility. That’s the kind of high-level situation we are in.
What we have launched with the megalaunch is the Enterprise Data Services (EDS) platform, which, uniquely in the market, addresses those five issues from an availability perspective, a protection perspective and an insights perspective – a kind of API approach (availability, protection, insight) – on one platform. This platform is both a platform and a vision of how we manage data in the enterprise world.
TR: How does this approach differ to what you were doing before?
JF: We would always talk about our solutions, but we are now driving more integration across those solutions. In the case of a typical enterprise customer, some vendors will say ‘I will solve your protection issues’; or, if you are moving to AWS in the cloud, ‘I will help you to drive that migration and the availability and the security of your data as you make that transition’; or ‘We can optimise your storage insights so you can see the data on a network’.
With this integrated platform, we have pushed all those things together. Rather than driving point solutions, which is complex, increases risk and increases the cost of ownership, we are pushing this all together as one integrated platform to drive protection, availability and insight across your infrastructure. It’s a pretty big step forward from that perspective.
Having all these solutions available on one platform is an opportunity for Veritas and its partners to really add value to an enterprise. It gives a partner that sells availability through NetBackup the ability to have a value added, trusted advisor conversation across the whole issue of data, rather than just different parts of it.
TR: Will this new approach influence the type of partner you work with?
JF: Not really. We are a multi-segment vendor anyway, working with service providers, system integrators, VARs that service enterprises and large enterprises. Essentially, we are helping existing partners have wider and deeper conversations with their customers. We’ve been wanting to come out with this message for a long time.
TR: Will customers have to do anything differently?
JF: No. On a product level, what we are actually launching this week is the new version of NetBackUp, which will add more functionality e.g. cloud native data protection on AWS and Azure etc.. We are also launching enhancements in our availability portfolio, on the disaster recovery and virtual replication side of things, as well as adding more emphasis to our acquisition of APTARE (in March 2019), which is all about providing insights into a storage environment at a cloud level, physical level and virtual level.
From a customer viewpoint, we are saying that while there are some cool vendors driving point products for particular problems, Veritas has every element covered. One of the complaints we hear from CIOs is that they have to use multiple tools to manage their data, their security environment, their network environment. That’s the headache. Our big play here is that while our flagship product has always been for protection, we now have all this other stuff that can help you enhance data management without increasing your TCO, because you are dealing with one player.
TR: Have you gained this added functionality and expertise through acquisition?
JF: The insights piece is very interesting in this context. The availability and protection piece has been our heritage for 20 years. What I say to clients is ‘Think about NetBackup; it is not version 1.3, but 8.2’. We continue to add functionality, to support new workloads and new approaches to data – the cloud, Dockers, containers etc.. We will always be the first to market with that kind of increased functionality. However, the APTARE acquisition is a good signpost of where we want to go.
Whilst we have a lot of technology that provides visibility of a data backup environment, specifically around NetBackUp, APTARE enhances our analytical capability by providing data protection visibility and virtual infrastructure and storage environment visibility, so that customers can say ‘Right, now I have this more holistic visibility of my overall environment, what policies do I need to reduce cost, to reduce risk and to increase profitability or customer value?’. So, APTARE changes the game. But enhancements will still continue across protection and availability.
In summary, this week represents four big launches in one, which is why we are calling it the mega-launch – enhancements to NetBackUp and to our Infoscale product, which is our availability product, plus Information Studio, which is our big visibility product, together with APTARE, which is our new acquisition. What we want partners to understand (and to take to market) is the fact that we now have this multi-solution platform that will enable them to grow and to have new conversations both with existing and new customers.