Commvault Activate package turns insight into action

Commvault's Activate, consisting of data analysis tools announced earlier this year, now allows users to learn about their unstructured data and effectively take action with it.

Commvault last week added a new application that packages technologies outside of its core data backup software to help customers gain more value from data.

Commvault Activate formally launched at the Commvault GO user conference, but it consists mostly of tools that have been around for at least months. Commvault Activate contains data intelligence tools and applications designed to derive information from unstructured data and then make effective use of that knowledge.

The core technology of Commvault Activate is Commvault's dynamic index (Commvault 4D Index) and artificial intelligence (co-developed with Lucidworks) that derive context and meaning from data sources. Activate uses the information gained from this data discovery to power automated policies surrounding that data. It automatically identifies sensitive information and immediately secures it according to compliance protocols.

Examples of Activate's AI capabilities include the Sensitive Data Governance tool and File Storage Optimization tool. Sensitive Data Governance finds sensitive personal, financial or business-critical data and can automate compliance processes. File Storage Optimization optimizes storage and assesses risk across data silos by looking at information such as files, file types and file sizes.

Commvault Activate can derive information from data managed across all environments, including by third-party tools. Activate can be purchased separately from the vendor's flagship Commvault Complete Backup & Recovery application.

Screenshot of Storage Distribution tool in Commvault Activate
File Storage Optimization in Commvault Activate lets customers be strategic about where data is stored.

Christophe Bertrand, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, said Activate is a move beyond backup and recovery, which has been Commvault's focus since its inception.

"The message being focused on outcomes is very positive," Bertrand said. "It's not just backup and recovery day by day. It's really about helping the business, taking the conversation to data intelligence, data management, to autonomous decision-making."

The tools and applications that comprise Commvault Activate are available now, but the complete Activate package and the Sensitive Data Governance application will be generally available in December 2018. More applications under the Activate banner are planned for 2019.

When you start actually turning data into information, it has the ability to create a whole new business.
Patrick McGrathdirector of solutions marketing, Commvault

Since most of Activate's tools have been available, the vendor watched how customers used the product. Patrick McGrath, director of solutions marketing at Commvault, said Activate was packaged to address specific customer use cases and patterns.

"What we've actually found is people will start off with a specific use case, but their uses expand fairly quickly once they've started using it," McGrath said. "The idea is to say, 'Let's put it all in one bundle.'"

McGrath said the goal is to bring business value to data rather than just IT value.

"When you start actually turning data into information, it has the ability to create a whole new business," McGrath said. "We've got a data platform that we can actually get business value out of, rather than IT value."

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