HDS Launches New Content Platform For Cloud Storage

Hitachi Data Systems is updating its Hitachi Content Platform and unveiled a new gateway for storing and discovering content on that platform as a way to make it easier for partners to help customers access data as a service or through a cloud.

HDS on Tuesday unveiled version 4 of its Hitachi Content Platform, a system which provides intelligent, content-focused storage of unstructured data using multiple tiers. Updates to HCP v4 include features to improve scalability, manageability, security, compliance, and replication.

The company also unveiled its new Hitachi Data Ingestor, an on-premise appliance for the storage and recovery of CIFS and NFS data on the HCP v4.

Together, the HCP v4 and the Hitachi Data Ingestor provide an integrated unstructured data solution for customers with remote users who may be in a branch office or outside a cloud, said Tanya Loughlin, manager of cloud product marketing at HDS.

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"It's aimed at distributed environments, including branch and remote offices, or private clouds for companies trying to provide services to such environments, or for service providers who want to deliver such services to their customers in a public cloud," Loughlin said.

Next: Improving Scalability, Security, And Data Protection In HCP v4

HCP provides object-oriented storage with metadata wrapped around the storage object to let customers add intelligence to their storage in multitenant environments, Loughlin said.

Such intelligence allows customers to manage and preserve data for long periods of time for legal, compliance, or other business reasons with such services as data integrity checking, RAID 6, replication, encryption, WORM, audit logging, and so on to make sure data remains accessible and in its original form for years.

New for HCP v4 is advanced replication capabilities, including the ability to replicate from many devices to a single HCP or to chain the replication of several units, Loughlin said. Also new is dynamic data protection levels, which Loughlin said allows two units to back each other up for disaster recovery purposes without the requirement that the data on both be the same.

Also new is the ability for HCP to instantly recognize and use new capacity as it is added, she said.

HDS has also increased the manageability of the HPC with a new management API that allows service providers to provide new services such as automated chargeback in multitenant configurations.

Next: More Ways To Get Data In And Out

HDS's new Hitachi Data Ingestor is an appliance built specifically for storing NFS or CIFS content on the HCP. It can be used at remote or branch offices or at public cloud locations, Loughlin said.

The Hitachi Data Ingestor ships in two-node clusters for high availability, and provides such management features as chargebacks and quota management. It also provides a local cache of frequently-accessed data for fast retrieval, she said.

The Ingestor is good for multitenant environments, Loughlin said. "Each tenant has their own file system, and each client has their own namespace," she said. "So one user cannot access information from another tenant or user."

As customer store increasing amounts of data, the ability to search and find it is something customers have been clamoring for, said Joe Kadlec, vice president and senior partner at Consiliant Technologies, an Irvine, Calif.-based solution provider and HDS partner.

"With the cost of lawyers to search data, the cost of a single lawsuit could fund this entire solution," Kadlec said.

Next: Moving Fast With The New Products

Greg Knieriemen, vice president of marketing at Chi Corp., a Cleveland-based solution provider and HDS partner, called the new HCP v4 and Hitachi Data Ingestor a great solution.

"We've got a customer right out of the gate," Knieriemen said. "I'm redoing a spec for what could be a quick sale with a multilocation customer. They're looking at putting HDIs in remote offices, with their data all going to a central location. For them, being able to manage storage from a regulatory point-of-view is important."

Loughlin said that the HPC solution is currently sold through HDS's indirect sales channel partners, and that Hitachi Data Ingestor sales will be tied to the HPC sales through the channel as a joint solution.

Both products are currently available.