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Volume 29, Issue 3

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Jon Seals

Eliminate Media Web Servers, Media Access Applications, Relational Databases and File Systems by Integrating a Single Tier of Scalable Storage

AUSTIN, Texas – Content distribution sites derive value from how quickly and easily they are able to deliver digital assets to their audiences. To ensure the best end-user experience, many content providers have implemented a secondary set of media access infrastructures to support their rapidly scaling sites, including additional media web servers, media access applications, relational databases and distributed file systems to deliver, access and store content. A better solution to adding multiple tiers of infrastructure to purchase, deploy, scale and manage is to consolidate on a single, scalable tier of web-accessible storage, say experts at Caringo.

As content libraries grow, traditional technologies like relational databases and file systems become difficult to manage and protect. The cost of hardware and staff required to manage these disparate systems ultimately limits operational flexibility while the addition of each layer of infrastructure results in compounding latency—resulting in increased buffering, slow content delivery and, ultimately, lost viewers. The solution is consolidating the media web server, media access application and relational database tier with searchable storage for the cloud age enabled by Caringo Swarm.

“Content distributors looking to reduce latency by 40%, reduce storage costs by 75% and radically simplify content delivery, access from applications and content management should look no further than Caringo Swarm,” said Adrian Herrera, Caringo Vice President of Marketing. “This is the reason Caringo is used as the back end for major media properties owned by NEP, IAC and various cultural media archives worldwide.”

Offered as a complete software appliance, Swarm provides a storage platform for data protection, management, organization and search at massive scale. Users no longer need to migrate data into disparate solutions for long-term preservation, delivery and analysis. Organizations can easily consolidate all files on Swarm, find the data they are looking for quickly, and reduce total cost of ownership by continuously evolving hardware and optimizing use of their resources.

For more information on how Caringo Swarm simplifies and streamlines content delivery visit https://caringo.wistia.com/medias/nryrwg3p10.

Follow Caringo

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/caringo-inc-

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CaringoStorage

About Caringo

Caringo was founded in 2005 to change the economics of storage by designing software from the ground up to solve the issues associated with data protection, management, organization and search at massive scale. Caringo’s flagship product, Swarm, eliminates the need to migrate data into disparate solutions for long-term preservation, delivery and analysis—radically reducing total cost of ownership. Today, Caringo software is the foundation for simple, bulletproof, limitless storage solutions for the Department of Defense, the Brazilian Federal Court System, City of Austin, Telefónica, British Telecom, Ask.com, Johns Hopkins University and hundreds more worldwide. Visit www.caringo.com to learn more.

We’re used to hearing that security is the biggest bugaboo holding back greater migration to the cloud. Internet security concerns are said to be so acute that it’s widely accepted as an axiomatic truth.

But it’s time to revise that argument.

Digital security still rates as an important issue in any discussion about whether to migrate an enterprise’s data to the cloud. But enterprises have warmed up to cloud computing to the point where their biggest challenge now is actually finding enough people who have the necessary technical backgrounds to keep their cloud systems up and running.



Thursday, 19 May 2016 00:00

Joplin Study Spawns Code Recommendations

Though building codes for schools and a range of other structures provide for protection of winds up to 115 mph, that’s not nearly enough to protect against a strong tornado like an EF4, an EF5 or even an EF3. In fact, building codes don’t even mention tornadoes unless discussing a safe room or shelter.

That has to change, and building codes and standards need to acknowledge tornadoes and the difference between straight speeds and the variables of wind presented by tornadoes. That is one of the 16 recommendations that resulted from a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) study of the May 2011 tornado that killed 161 and damaged more than 7,500 structures in Joplin, Mo.

The tornado was the deadliest since the first records were kept in 1951, hence the study to determine what factors contributed most to the death and destruction. The NIST team, led by Marc Levitan, looked at four key factors that contributed: storm characteristics; building performance; human behavior; and emergency communication.



Thursday, 19 May 2016 00:00

Global Warming of Data

Eric Bassier is Senior Director of Datacenter Solutions at Quantum.

It already reached 90 degrees in Seattle this year. In April. I’m not complaining – yet – but I’m definitely a believer that global warming is happening and that we need to make some changes to address it. But this article isn’t about climate change – it’s about data. Specifically, it’s about the growth of unstructured data and the gloomy fate ahead if we continue to deny the problem and ignore the warning signs. Sound familiar?

It’s hard to argue with the evidence of unstructured data growth. Estimates and studies vary, but the general consensus is that there will be 40-50 zettabytes of data by the year 2020, and 80-90 percent of that will be unstructured.



Thursday, 19 May 2016 00:00

Building Scale into the Private Cloud

If all things were equal between the private and public cloud, few enterprises would migrate their workloads to public infrastructure. All things are not equal, however, so IT executives are constantly weighing the security and availability concerns of the public cloud with higher capital costs and lack of scale on the private side.

But while public providers have made a lot of noise touting their improved encryption and service reliability, an equally strong movement is brewing to make private cloud infrastructure more scalable, easier to deploy and less expensive.

The private cloud requires private infrastructure, of course, so deploying resources at scale remains a key challenge. (Yes, hosted is an option, too, but I’m talking about true in-house private clouds.) This is why emerging platform providers like Tintri are pushing the envelope when it comes to deploying hefty resource architectures without crushing the budget. The company’s new VMstore T5000 All-Flash Series appliance supports upwards of 160,000 virtual machines and can be outfitted with SaaS-based predictive analytics and other tools to enable advanced capacity and performance models to suit Apache Spark, ElasticSearch and other Big Data engines. And as is the company’s modus operandi, the system scales at the VM level rather than the LUN level to enable greater flexibility when matching resources to workloads.



(TNS) - With one expert calling Zika the “the virus from hell,” health officials warned state lawmakers about the spread of the Zika virus across the state and offered their insights on possible response measures in case of an outbreak.

John Hellerstedt, commissioner for the Department of State Health Services, warned that the virus is expected to begin spreading as prime mosquito season nears.

“We don’t know when and we don’t know at what level that will occur,” Hellerstedt said.

In response to the growing number of Zika cases in Texas in recent months, Tuesday afternoon lawmakers met to discuss what is being done in the state to prevent an outbreak of the virus.



Considering the number of threats that organizations face today, it may be surprising to learn that the majority of companies are not prepared for a business-affecting emergency. Unfortunately, it’s true: The Disaster Recovery Preparedness Council found that nearly three quarters of organizations worldwide aren’t properly protecting their data and systems.

The potential consequences of not having a business continuity management program are extremely grave. Consider the many risks that your company faces: network outages, natural disasters, active shooter events, data breaches and more. However, if your organization doesn’t take business continuity seriously, you’re facing even greater risks, including the following:



The Business Continuity Institute - May 19, 2016 16:57 BST

The theme for Business Continuity Awareness Week is return on investment and the discussion has mainly focussed on the investment in business continuity processes, but what about the investment in those people working in the industry? Does this provide any return? It certainly does for the individual according to the latest research by the Business Continuity Institute, which examined the salaries of business continuity professionals from across the world, and made comparisons between different demographics or factors.

The key finding from the Global Salary Benchmarking Report was that BCI certified members, those who have achieved one of the world’s leading credentials in business continuity, earned more than their non-certified colleagues by up to 30%. In Europe the figure was 30%, while in Australasia and North America it was 18%. This helps demonstrate the value of investing in your career, as ultimately those with the appropriate certifications receive greater remuneration.

The findings of the report also indicated a gender pay gap, with female business continuity professionals in Europe being paid a staggering 37% less than their male counterparts, while those in North America received 19% less. Of course there may be a number of variables that contribute to this, but the fact remains that there is a significant salary imbalance between men and women.

Patrick Alcantara DBCI, Senior Research Associate at the BCI and author of the report, commented: “The report identifies that business continuity professionals must consider the investment in their own career. By attaining the credentials relevant to their role, and investing in their education, they can improve their career prospects and reap the benefits when it comes to remuneration.

It must be noted as well that significant variations still exist between salaries for men and women. This is something that the business continuity community can help change consistent with the principle that equal work deserves equal pay.

In addition to the Global Report, the BCI has also produced reports for several countries and regions across the world, and these can be found using the links below.

Asia | Australasia | Australia | Europe | North America | United Kingdom | United States

Peer-to-peer mobile networking technology enables organizations to reach more people in times of emergency, even when cellular networks are unavailable

SAN FRANCISCO – Open Garden announces today the release of FireChat Alerts, the first alerting service to leverage peer-to-peer mobile mesh networking technology. FireChat Alerts enables organizations to reach people on their smartphone, even when cellular networks and Internet access are unavailable.

FireChat logo

The United Nations estimated that more than 200 million people are affected by humanitarian crises and natural disasters each year. As world leaders prepare for the upcoming World Humanitarian Summit, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recently published a report that highlighted how "Honouring our commitment to leave no one behind requires reaching everyone in situations of conflict, disaster, vulnerability and risk." FireChat Alerts was created for this purpose.

FireChat Alerts is a new application for mobile devices and the web, designed for governmental organizations, NGOs and media to broadcast and disseminate 'one-to-very-many' alerts to mobile devices within a specific geographical area and period of time. FireChat Alerts acts as a resilient large-scale broadcasting system, reaching people's smartphones to deliver text and visual information including early warning, emergency and health advisories, as well as weather and traffic information.

"Witnessing an average of 20 typhoons annually, everyone in the Philippines has a very keen interest in innovation that helps both in preparedness and response during and after emergencies," said Gil Francis Arevalo, Community Engagement Officer of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) in the Philippines. "The technology behind FireChat Alerts has huge potential. We began exploring the possibilities with Open Garden as part of OCHA's commitment to the members of the Community of Practice (CoP) on Community Engagement."

Alerts are transmitted directly from one smartphone to the next via Open Garden's peer-to-peer mesh networking technology. This is the first time that messages can transit through a brand new path: our own smartphones, instead of centralized networks. Each device can store and forward the alerts, allowing them to propagate and reach more and more people, and extending the reach of messages beyond the abilities of traditional networks.

"FireChat Alerts can reach more people than is possible via traditional networks, even when mobile apps or SMS cannot work. Since the technology is 100% software-based, it does not require any hardware or capital investments, is easy to deploy, and scales infinitely," said Christophe Daligault, CMO of Open Garden. "As an active member of the Community of Practice (CoP) on Community Engagement, we are extremely grateful for the collaboration with the UNOCHA and the opportunity to raise awareness for the benefits of this new resilient technology."

People who have the FireChat messaging app on their smartphone receive the alerts as they spread within the designated area, even when cellular networks and Internet access are unavailable or congested, as is often the case in an emergency. Open Garden's technology is also available as a Software Development Kit (SDK) for organizations who wish to enable peer-to-peer mobile communications in their own existing apps or services.

Open Garden Inc. will showcase FireChat Alerts at the United Nations World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul on May 23-24, 2016. For more information about the World Humanitarian Summit, please visit www.worldhumanitariansummit.org.

For more information about UNOCHA, please visit www.unocha.org.

For more information about FireChat Alerts, please visit www.opengarden.com/firechat-alerts or watch this short video.

About Open Garden & FireChat
Open Garden is a San Francisco-based startup dedicated to connecting the next 5 billion mobile devices with peer-to-peer connections. Open Garden is the creator of FireChat.

Often called the "people's network," FireChat is a free messaging app, available on iOS and Android devices. Built on revolutionary peer-to-peer mesh networking technology, FireChat allows people to communicate privately or publicly, with other people "offline" even if they cannot connect to the Internet or to a cellular phone network.

Launched in March 2014, FireChat has reached the top 10 among social networking apps in 124 countries around the world. In 2015, FireChat received an Innovation Award at SXSW, the Boldness in Business Award by the Financial Times, and the Tech4Resilience Award by Making All Voices Count.

For more information about how FireChat works, please watch this short video.

Press Contacts: press@opengarden.com

Keywords: natural disasters, disaster preparedness, emergency communication, Communication as Aid, resilient networks, Communicating with Communities, World Humanitarian Summit, peer-to-peer, innovation, OCHA, UNOCHA, Android, iOS, FireChat, #commisaid, #ShareHumanity, #Resilience, #SDGs

Open Garden is a San Francisco-based startup dedicated to connecting the next 5 billion mobile devices through peer-to-peer technology.

Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150318/183099LOGO

Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140624/120786

Pelion Venture Partners, Nautilus Venture Partners and Foxconn's Ingrasys Invest in DriveScale; Company Founders Include Elite Server and Storage Veterans Responsible for Multibillion-Dollar Data Center Product Lines for Sun and Cisco

SUNNYVALE, Calif. – DriveScale, the company that is pioneering flexible, scale-out computing for the enterprise using standard servers and commodity storage, today emerged from a three-year stealth development effort and announced $15 million in a Series A funding round led by Pelion Venture Partners with participation from Nautilus Venture Partners and Foxconn's Ingrasys. Carl Ledbetter, Managing Director at Pelion Venture Partners, and Connie Sheng, Founding Managing Director at Nautilus Venture Partners, join the Board of Directors as the first outside members, and the company named Scott McNealy, James Gosling, Phil Roussey and Ameet Patel as advisors.

"We believe the big data market, which is already strong, will accelerate as data analytics and IoT applications become ever more important. We know the technical problems that have to be solved to serve enterprise customers running production code in large infrastructure environments are profoundly difficult, so we wanted to find the strongest possible team, one with a world-class track record," said Carl Ledbetter, Managing Partner at Pelion Venture Partners. "Pelion was looking for the right technical and market approach in this area and the DriveScale architecture delivered the most flexible, highest performance and most robust system we found. When DriveScale showed us their product concept we knew we had a winning opportunity with the strongest team in the industry."

Addressing the Elephant in the Room: Scaling Hadoop and Big Data Workloads
Today, standard rack servers are the status quo in scale-out infrastructure. However, this equipment was not originally designed for big data processing platforms such as Hadoop and massively parallel computing environments.

Leveraging the DriveScale team's decades of experience in data center infrastructure design -- including the invention of several multibillion-dollar data center products, such as the Cisco UCS product line and Sun's UltraSparc workstations and workgroup servers -- its founders created a platform that provides enterprise companies with scale-out architecture previously only found in hyperscale organizations with practically limitless budgets such as Google or Facebook. By creating an architecture that is more flexible than the traditional scale-out data center (see today's product announcement), IT administrators and operators looking at their organization's data can make adjustments as they go, without hitting the common roadblocks found with standard commodity server assets.

"DriveScale first interested us because they clearly understood one of our core requirements, namely the desire to manage CPU and storage resources as separate pools. Unfortunately, storage and server technology upgrades move on two different timetables. Without a solution like DriveScale's, we are forced into storage refresh cycles that aren't strictly necessary and are very cumbersome," said Timothy Smith, SVP of Technical Operations at AppNexus. "Separating storage from compute allows us to upgrade or reallocate compute resources independent of storage. DriveScale significantly decreases the operations workload, as a result increasing the velocity of delivering new products and features to our customer base. We think that DriveScale is a promising solution that will also help us reduce wasted resources trapped in siloed clusters and thus contribute directly to our bottom line."

DriveScale Goes to Market with Foxconn's Ingrasys
In related news today (see announcement), Ingrasys, a wholly owned subsidiary of Foxconn Technology Group, the world's largest electronics contract manufacturer, announced a strategic partnership with DriveScale. Ingrasys has co-developed the DriveScale product line and is the company's hardware equipment manufacturer. 

"With so many players in the big data space, it's great to find a company that is truly going to innovate in the data center infrastructure," said Connie Sheng, Founding Managing Director at Nautilus Venture Partners. "With the support of Foxconn, DriveScale's impressive team has proven that they have the experience and the technology to address Hadoop and big data platform flexibility problems."

"The time is right for a disaggregated rack scale architecture. The state of the art in ethernet switch fabrics enables wire-speed connection of pools of commodity CPU and storage resources under software control, with no loss in performance. The market opportunity for flexible scale-out infrastructure for enterprises is enormous," said Gene Banman, CEO at DriveScale. "The whole computer industry is moving our way. It's just a matter of time."

Supporting Quotes:

Amr Awadallah, Cofounder and CTO of Cloudera, Inc.: "The Apache Hadoop ecosystem has fundamentally changed how enterprises store, process and extract business value out of their data. We see its popularity and adoption skyrocketing across many industries. That said, certain IT administrators don't like the tight coupling that Hadoop introduces between the storage and compute layers, making it hard to scale and manage them independently. DriveScale has taken a huge step forward with its scale-out architecture that allows administrators to flexibly and dynamically provision the storage capacity independently of the compute capacity without introducing network bottlenecks."

James Gosling, Chief Software Architect at Liquid Robotics, and Creator of Java: "I love the flexibility that DriveScale gives those of us with private data centers. Whether because of shifting applications or dynamic loads, DriveScale enables rewiring a rack without touching a physical wire -- all on the fly with no downtime."

Mani Raman, Technical Architect at DST Systems: "We engaged with DriveScale because it gives us the ability to do scale-out easily using commodity hardware. With their platform, we can address compute and storage needs independently and will be able to buy and scale these assets separately in the future. The DriveScale solution will help us use our hardware assets more efficiently. As we build out our offerings to include more and varied analytics, this capability becomes very important to us."

Scott Gnau, CTO at Hortonworks: "Rapid adoption of Hadoop in the enterprise is driving more requirements for flexible system configuration. More innovation in infrastructure will benefit the entire industry."

About DriveScale
DriveScale is leading the charge in bringing hyperscale computing capabilities to mainstream enterprises. Its composable data center architecture transforms rigid data centers into flexible and responsive scale-out deployments. Using DriveScale, data center administrators can deploy independent pools of commodity compute and storage resources, automatically discover available assets, and combine and recombine these resources as needed. The solution is provided via a set of on-premises and SaaS tools that coordinate between multiple levels of infrastructure. With DriveScale, companies can more easily support Hadoop deployments of any size as well as other modern application workloads. DriveScale is founded by a team with deep roots in IT architecture and that has built enterprise-class systems such as Cisco UCS and Sun UltraSparc. Based in Sunnyvale, California, the company was founded in 2013. Investors include Pelion Venture Partners, Nautilus Venture Partners and Ingrasys, a wholly owned subsidiary of Foxconn. For more information, visit www.drivescale.com or follow us on Twitter at @DriveScale_Inc.