Virtualization Startup Autovirt Tackles Data Migration Headaches

AutoVirt software version 3.5, launched Monday, adds a scanning feature that identifies and categorizes file data in storage area networks and cloud computing environments. Companies typically have mountains of file data that makes this analysis time consuming, but AutoVirt 3.5 handles the task in a speedier fashion, according to Josh Klein, the company's president and CEO.

AutoVirt 3.5 scans all file data and returns results that can be organized in a variety of ways, such as file data by owner, file type, or date of last access. Users could also use AutoVirt 3.5 to show all jpeg files on a company's storage networks, or to locate files that belong to an employee who has left the company.

This type of analysis is a critical and necessary first step for companies looking to prioritize critical data on high performance storage and relegate other data to less expensive storage tiers, Klein said in an interview.

"One of the biggest problems with file management is the lack of visibility into file data. If you don’t know that, you can't figure out what to get rid of or archive," Klein said. "Many companies would love to get rid of old file servers but can’t deal with the time and expense of migrations."

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AutoVirt solves these issues with software that inserts a global namespace into storage that essentially virtualizes the file server environment, making it easier to move files, Klein said.

File permissions and corrupted data are common stumbling blocks for data migration projects, but the visibility AutoVirt 3.5 provides can help companies get around these issues, said Klein.

"When you can't open a file because you don’t have access to it, or it's corrupted, that puts a sudden stop to any data migration project. You then have to go back and find out why it wouldn't copy and what you have to do to fix it," he said. "We can identify problems that have to be cleaned up or fixed at the file level before you begin the project."

AutoVirt, based in Nashua, N.H., works closely with NetApp and EMC, the storage industry's answer to the Hatfields and McCoys, and its hardware agnostic architecture ensures its compatibility in a wide range of environments, Klein said.

AutoVirt in recent months has moved to an all-channel sales model and Klein said VARs are finding it an effective catalyst for new hardware sales. "We're continually being told that our product is a differentiator in deals because it removes a big roadblock for channel partners that are trying to sell equipment to customers," he said.