Automating Data Management with the Combined Spectra and StrongBox Solution

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Floyd Christofferson
SVP, Products, StrongBox Data Solutions

Spectra invited StrongBox Senior VP of Products Floyd Christofferson, to discuss the attributes of the StrongBox and BlackPearl Solution.

How does the StrongLink® solution work?

StrongLink leverages the power of metadata and machine learning to deliver the first solution to truly automate storage and data management across multi-vendor storage environments. StrongLink is not limited by a particular filesystem or storage vendor ecosystem but can bridge multi-vendor environments with a policy-driven management layer to automate and simplify all aspects of data management, data protection, storage resource management and more.

The result is reduced complexity for IT staff and users alike, which results in reduced management overhead, better ROI from existing storage resources, and greater control over protection and utilization of the data.

How does Spectra’s BlackPearl enhance your solution and benefit customers?

The direct integration between StrongLink and the Spectra® BlackPearl® Converged Storage System means that tape-based storage may be seamlessly tied into a cross-platform policy-based storage management fabric. StrongLink extends BlackPearl and Spectra disk and tape-based platforms to be part of a global namespace, automating data protection policies, data migration, data placement for workflows, etc.

With the combined Spectra and StrongBox solution, IT administrators can centrally manage all of their resources and seamlessly leverage the advantages of each of Spectra’s storage solutions to automatically ensure that data is protected and accessible in the correct storage tier according to the stage of its lifecycle.

What are the ideal markets/ vertical industries for the solution?
The greater the volume of data that must be managed, particularly unstructured data, the greater StrongLink’s value is to customers. This applies to Higher Ed and Research, Life Sciences pipelines, such as genomic labs, Media and Entertainment, large-scale video surveillance, oil and gas, manufacturing, and so on. Customers who have greater than 300-500TB, or who are on the path to get there will see improved ROI on their existing storage resources, and a reduced load on IT staff as they move forward.

What are some of the biggest challenges end users face today that led you to develop this solution?

The extreme growth of unstructured data has created a burgeoning set of new problems for IT organizations. This is particularly the case where expensive primary storage platforms end up housing a high percentage of inactive data. Storage vendors offer storage-centric solutions to this, but those typically are limited to the vendor’s file system, or storage ecosystem. These solutions usually lock customers into a limited way of doing things.

Whether it is to get better utilization out of primary storage, or to enable multiple storage tiers or cloud options, or to simplify data protection, or optimize multiple existing storage resources, customers want the freedom to select whichever storage type they need to match budget, performance requirements, or current and future use cases. And they want to do this without adding complexity to their environment, or interruption to users.

StrongLink was built to provide a data-centric approach that would work across any storage type. By leveraging the power of metadata in a vendor-neutral platform, StrongLink can automate, and thus dramatically simplify cross-platform data management, data protection & replication, reducing load on IT staff, and simplifying access to users.