ExtraHop Expands Capabilities Of Its Real-Time Data Analytics For IT Networks

ExtraHop has launched the fifth generation of its real-time "wire data" analytics system for IT managers, providing multidimensional analysis capabilities and adding a new search appliance to its product lineup.

The new offerings provide a way for system and network administrators to collect, store and analyze huge volumes of detailed data in motion from IT networks, applications, infrastructure, client systems and business transactional data in real time.

"Most people don't think of the network as a strategic asset. They think of it as a pipe," said Erik Giesa, ExtraHop senior vice president of marketing and business development, in a CRN interview. "We're able to mine all that data in motion and make sense of it."

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While ExtraHop's technology already allows users to analyze wire data in real time, its Discovery appliance only collects and stores data summaries. The new Explore appliance allows users to store, index, search and analyze detailed transactional data -- a capability that customers have asked for, Giesa said.

Wire data can be analyzed for a range of purposes, including monitoring and managing network and system performance and IT system security. It can provide insights into Web traffic and even individual user experiences, according to the company. And it has applications in the growing efforts to collect and analyze Internet of Things (IoT) data.

The 5.0 release of ExtraHop's software includes Open Data Stream for Kafka, providing connectivity to the Apache Software Foundations's Kafka open-source messaging system. That makes it easier for ExtraHop to work with data in Hadoop and Spark systems, said Isaac Roybal, principal product marketing manager.

A new dynamic discovery capability provides for the automatic discovery of all devices in an IT environment, including IoT devices, and tracks their activity without instrumentation. A new REST API provides a way to programmatically use, control and administer any physical virtual appliance through any programming language. The release also has a new user interface and visual query language.

ExtraHop, based in Seattle, relies on the channel for greater than 75 percent of its sales in North America and for all of its European sales, Giesa said. Some channel partners resell the ExtraHop products while consulting partners use the technology themselves to provide services to customers, such as helping them get the most out of their data. Others use the tools as part of their data center consolidation practices.

MTI Technology, a data management solution provider based in London, resells ExtraHop's products to its data center customers. Some use the technology to identify and resolve bottlenecks in their data management processes and so get more value out of that data.

"There's so much data being generated in terms of the network," said Alan Ryan, a sales director with MTI, noting that even simple network switches generate hundreds of gigabytes of data every day. "You'll never be able to interpret all that data, no matter how skilled your people are."

"ExtraHop takes all that information in and makes sense of it," he said. "It's time to value, and getting value out of the massive amounts of data being generated by their data centers." Other MTI customers use the ExtraHop technology as a security tool to help identify network anomalies, he said.