The latest software release from data migration vendor Datadobi could lift and shift the company's entire business from data migration into complete data management.
Datadobi is releasing StorageMap, new data management software that combines the company's prior DobiMigrate and DobiProtect with new capabilities for organizing and visualizing unstructured file and object data, such as tagging, archiving and reporting.
Reporting capabilities include new tools for environmental, social and governance standards report generation and statistics tracking. Customer feedback will drive additions to the sustainability tools, according to Datadobi.
StorageMap will be generally available May 17. The software will be available through an annual subscription with additional charges based on terabyte capacity and user actions.
Datadobi already sells vendor-agnostic software for on-premises and cloud migrations, said Vinny Choinski, a senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, a division of TechTarget. The maturity of Datadobi's existing software with the new capabilities of StorageMap positions Datadobi as a competitor with other data storage management companies such as Komprise or Hammerspace, he noted.
Vinny ChoinskiSenior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group
"They have the pieces ready to build," he said. "These guys know how to move data. They're now putting the visualization there."
Tag 'em and flag 'em
StorageMap's tagging capabilities enable users to create a metadata layer for unstructured data, providing greater visibility into their storage environment. The tags can then be used with the software's reporting tools to determine what types of files exist, who is consuming the most storage and how often a given data set is accessed.
Storage administrators can use StorageMap's metadata tags alongside the software's management console and the new Datadobi Query Language API, included with the software, to set up automated data movement and migrations.
Datadobi's customers, many of whom operate a hybrid storage environment, can struggle with managing unstructured data before the migration process even begins, said Steven Leeper, vice president of product marketing at Datadobi.
Primarily out of compliance paranoia, administrators tend to hold on to files, including some that aren't in active use on primary storage drives, or maintain files that could cause compliance issues, such as storing copyrighted media in company folders, according to Leeper.
"This notion that 'Thou shall store [all] data,' that's going away," he said. "Times are different. Companies are getting 5, 10, 15 petabytes and they're just drowning."
Datadobi's products have typically been used by customers on an as-needed basis for migrations, but Leeper said StorageMap marks a change in how the company will sell its software, how it will serve its customers and what services the company will look to provide.
"The migration business is a project, but the management system is a process," Leeper said. "This is a product that goes into the data center and becomes part of the woodwork."
Leeper reiterated, however, that StorageMap will remain vendor-agnostic and won't alter a user's data or storage hardware in any capacity.
"We're an out-of-band [management] solution," he said. "We never get between the host and storage."
To observe and report
StorageMap's environmental, social and governance reporting tools will enable users to break down not only the financial costs of enterprise infrastructure, but some of the environmental costs as well, such as CO2 emission tracking.
Sustainability metrics have not been standardized, and StorageMap's reporting API can change or expand in future versions based on customer requests, according to Leeper.
Specific costs and savings based on this data might be minimal for smaller companies, but larger organizations could benefit from an economy of scale for sustainability, said Eric Burgener, research vice president at IDC.
"It's not going to be an issue for small or medium companies," he said. "But for large companies, this could mean money."
He noted that Meta's purchase of Pure Storage hardware earlier this year was driven in part by the savings from energy efficiencies. Burgener said Meta is far from alone in looking for potential savings from "going green," even if environmental altruism isn't the initial inspiration.
"That was a shot across the bow -- that some of these bellwether [companies] are trying to make critical decisions based on [environmental, social and governance factors]," he said. "If you have 120 TB under management, that's not going to make a difference. If you have 30 PB, that's going to make a difference."
Tim McCarthy is a journalist living on the North Shore of Massachusetts. He covers cloud and data storage news.