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Commvault defines new challenges

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Commvault has identified a series of emerging customer needs facing CIOs and technology and business leaders as they face the challenges of rapidly changing technology, tightening resource requirements, and ever-expanding volumes of data.
The company has also outlined the Principals of Modern Data Management that should be the minimum requirements found in a modern, holistic data management solution. The Principals were validated in in an IDC Spotlight.
The emerging customer needs and the Principals of Modern Data Management were introduced as part of a slate of news announcements from Commvault as the company unveiled the latest generation of its renowned data protection and information management portfolio (link to other release).
Commvault recognizes that data conversations have been changing as customers deal with long accepted mega trends like the move to the cloud, increasing demands for security and compliance, anywhere computing, and the explosive growth of data. These trends have drastically reshaped the IT industry and data management.
With continued market innovations in storage, cloud, and hyper converged infrastructures, Commvault has identified six key new customer needs that are increasingly the focus of CIO and technology leaders:
* Open, Standards-Based Infrastructure: Customers need to exploit the cost and flexibility advantages of commodity infrastructure.
* New Recovery Mandates: Customers are increasingly intolerant of data loss for critical applications, and recovery windows are closing.
* Extensible Analytics Built-In: Customers want search, visualization, graphical and correlation tools embedded into their data management solutions or accessible from third-party standard query languages.
* Access & Collaboration: Users should have seamless, universal access to all copies of their data, no matter when and where it was created, and the ability to securely share with others to increase re-use and unlock the value in data.
* End to End Governance: Companies must have all data under managed control – visibility, security, access and compliance are needed.
* Backup Outpaced by Data Growth: Data volumes are exceeding the ability of traditional backup solutions to meet today’s demands and recovery point objectives.
“CommVault unique insight into customer requirements comes from our sole focus on data protection and information management, assuring a singular focus on helping customers gain insight and value from their data even in the face of a rapidly changing and disruptive technology market,” says Robert Hammer, chairman, president and CEO of Commvault.  “As data growth keeps expanding, users now demand modern protection methods that can span the data center to the cloud to mobile users, offering recovery and lifecycle management against indexed data to expand reuse. A true trusted partner for customers is one that not only can address today’s business and technology needs, but also one with a clear vision of what’s next and shape a path forward for customers – Commvault is that partner.”
Commvault’s early visibility into these customer requirements helped guide its engineering and product management teams as they shaped the development of the company’s eleventh major software release. Many of the innovative features and functionality of the new Commvault Software and Commvault Data Platform were designed to directly address these emerging customer needs, while also advancing a solutions portfolio which has continued to receive accolades from customers and industry analysts for vision, capabilities and execution.
For example, new recovery mandates for an “always on, always available” approach resulted in a true Commvault differentiator in the new capability to immediately  present any copy of data resident in the Commvault platform as natively readable from its storage-optimized state. Commvault innovation means that there is no longer any need to rehydrate, reconstitute, or un-dedupe/encrypt to get access to traditional secondary copies, and eliminating the need for empty storage systems dedicated only to these tasks. This virtually eliminates downtime by providing faster time to data, while reducing infrastructure costs by shrinking the number of needed secondary copies.
Leveraging more than 15 years of experience assisting customers to successfully meet their data protection opportunities, combined with its unique perspective on emerging trends and technologies that are shaping the next generation of data management, Commvault has identified a set of basic requirements that must be met to deliver a true, holistic solution for customers.  The Principles were developed after reviewing hundreds of customer comments, executive briefings, and interactions.
Commvault then commissioned IDC, one of the world’s leading industry analyst and research companies, to validate these findings. The results are summarized in an IDC Spotlight, which makes the case for these minimum requirements, as well as validating the underlying emerging customer needs that are shaping next-generation data management requirements.  In another research paper, IDC states:  “As enterprises and consumers digitize their paper clutter, they find themselves in the midst of a data ocean — an ocean in which information access is a crucial part of day-to-day operations.  Furthermore, ensuring that the right type and quality of data is preserved and available when necessary has now become a mandatory requirement for any organisation seeking to thrive in today’s digital world.”
Calling it the Principals of Modern Data Management, Commvault said these seven principals should form the “must have” checklist for any customer looking to advance their data management strategy to be prepared for the future:
* Standards-Based Platform Access: Eliminate obsolescence and provider lock in; protects the future of a customers’ technology relationships and risks to their infrastructure roadmaps.
* Integrated Data Security: Data is secure in transit, at rest, and during access; ensures secure communication during movement, storage and activation with encryption, key management and role based controls for each technology persona with built-in audit controls and reports for compliance monitoring across all data locations.
* Direct Native Access: Data is available in its native format; native or on demand data delivery services provide near-instant interactive access (recovery points) in the format requested by the application resulting in reduced operational effort, time and risk.
* Extensible Search and Query: Index, analyse, visualise, and optimise data; activate and unlock live and historical data by providing seamless and powerful search query across multiple data solutions applications and storage locations, including virtual repositories, SaaS offerings, and cloud solutions.
* Universal Access & Collaboration: Securely share & sync across Apps, Files, Information; improve productivity and collaboration by giving users seamless, universal access to all copies of their data – no matter when and where it was created – and then enabling them to safely share data across users, applications, etc.
* Governance from Inception: Data is managed from when it is born; managing data from the moment of inception allows companies to have data under managed control – with visibility and security – significantly reducing the risk of breach, loss, theft or compliance failure.
* Incremental Change Capture:  Increased frequency of recovery points drives storage and network efficiency; Change block tracking opens opportunities to dramatically reduce workload impact during data protection operations while providing downstream efficiencies in network and storage utilization – only reading and moving the delta blocks and only storing the unique changed blocks.
This reduces bandwidth and storage requirements for ongoing recovery operations and speeds RPO and RTO.
“While careful vetting of vendors to address the challenges that end users face today around data protection and availability is key to any purchasing decision, it is not enough,” says Phil Goodwin, Research Director at IDC.  “Customers must have a forward vision of the market, work with their vendors to ensure that such technologies move through a predictable evolution of investment and plot where those technologies are in their life cycle. We share the Commvault view point that providing end users with a checklist of requirements to achieve optimal data protection will help ensure customers are prepared to address the IT challenges of both today and tomorrow.”