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EMC announces new Isilon updates

Data Lake 2.0 Strategy encompasses new core features, SDE and Hybrid Cloud capabilities

Desai: Rapid growth of unstructured data is challenging organisations to manage data growth.
Desai: Rapid growth of unstructured data is challenging organisations to manage data growth.

EMC Corporation has announced the next generation of its EMC Isilon Scale-out NAS Data Lake, which includes new products, features and capabilities that allow enterprises to scale easily to edge locations as well as to public clouds.

The new products, — IsilonSD Edge, the next generation of Isilon OneFS and Isilon CloudPools — enhance the Data Lake by allowing unstructured data to be available not only within the core data centre, but also at data centre edge locations such as remote offices and archived in the cloud. Designed to offer a more efficient Data Lake, the new Isilon solutions consolidate multiple workloads and allow users to access and analyse data from all locations.

“The rapid growth of unstructured data in the data centre core and at the enterprise edge is challenging organizations to both manage data growth and find new ways to tap highly distributed data stores for business intelligence and value,” says CJ Desai, president, Emerging Technologies Division, EMC. “At the same time, the pressure is still on to keep costs down. This trio of new EMC Isilon solutions is designed to optimise every part of the data centre, provide a seamless user experience and create new economics as customers continue to wrangle mountains of data and evolve their Big Data strategies.”

Three major trends are transforming the enterprise. First, enterprises are becoming more global with a distributed workforce. Second, the volume of unstructured data is growing rapidly and doubling every two years, increasing the need for managing data efficiently while also garnering value from it. Lastly, hybrid cloud has become the preeminent choice for customers to most efficiently and effectively run their data centres.

Remote offices and edge locations have historically had challenges with cost, low capacity, management complexity, conflicting formats and spotty governance when it comes to data. This has impacted the productivity of information workers in these locations, as well as IT’s ability to view and manage data.

EMC’s Data Lake 2.0 strategy and new announcements today are at the heart of managing these challenges. Early Data Lake deployments were limited to pulling in only data sources available within — or in close proximity to — the core data centre. Now there is an increasing need for the Data Lake 2.0 to expand and be able to manage unstructured data in a simple and consistent way within the core data centre, at edge locations and in the cloud.

IsilonSD Edge is a 100% software-defined offering that runs on commodity hardware. IsilonSD Edge will support VMware ESX and be fully integrated with VMware vCentre for ease of management. IsilonSD Edge sacrifices none of the capabilities of the OneFS operating system and will support OneFS’s data services and protocols while scaling up to 36TB, seamlessly replicating data to and distributing it from the core. IsilonSD Edge will be free for non-production use and licensed per cluster for production use.

In addition to extending the Data Lake to edge locations, EMC is also enhancing the Data Lake at the core through the new, next-generation Isilon OneFS operating system. This feature-rich offering is designed to improve resiliency, simplify management, raise efficiency and provide continuous operations for massive Data Lakes. A key enhancement is full Non-Disruptive Upgrade (NDU) support. OneFS has supported NDU for minor code families, and now works across major code families enhancing the resiliency of the Data Lake. The more resilient Data Lake will help ensure no downtime for users and application workloads during major upgrades

Understanding that much of the data within the enterprises today is “cold data” — data rarely in use — that needs to be retained for regulatory and compliance purposes, EMC is also offering EMC CloudPools, a new software application for the Isilon product line that will allow Isilon to easily extend to public, private and hybrid clouds to ensure access to data, regardless of location. When the data is tiered to the cloud, it is encrypted in transit and compressed to ensure security of enterprise data at rest in the cloud. This allows organizations to extend their Data Lakes to tap into cloud-scale capacity while ensuring consistent and simplified access to and management of the data.   

Scott Sinclair, analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group said, “With the world’s unstructured data growing at an unprecedented rate, IT organizations are under immense pressure to deliver more effective strategies for reducing costs, simplifying management and finding ways to consolidate enterprise data sources that can be mined for business intelligence and value. EMC is responding to this shift as one of the few vendors to champion Data Lake architectures and are now rolling out solutions capable of more easily harnessing unstructured data sources that until now have been trapped inside silos at the enterprise edge.”