Cohesity, probably the hottest secondary storage company, recently announced the availability of Helios, a SaaS-based management platform that is enhanced with machine learning capabilities. Helios brings global scale management capabilities to Cohesity’s secondary data platform by adding central, multi-cluster management for both on premises and cloud-based Cohesity deployments.
Cohesity’s intent is to alleviate their customers from the operational hurdles of maintaining multi-cluster deployments such as globally enforcing policies and keeping the environment up-to-date while also providing modern monitoring, capacity management, and global benchmarking features. These benchmarking features helps customers understand how their environment fares compared other customers, thanks to the global telemetry information collected by Cohesity.
Baked into the platform are features we’ve learned to appreciate and expect to see in any decent modern product such as call home, proactive reporting (disk failure prediction), automated technical support handling (automatic submission of support cases), what-if analysis, pre-configured reports, etc. Cohesity maintains a list of features on their Helios page in case you are curious.
An interesting addition to Helios is the integration of Cohesity-developed applications in a framework called Cohesity Analysis Workbench (AWB). Currently AWB can be used to search data patterns across files for compliance matters (identifying for example strings related to regulated information: card numbers, ID information, social security numbers, etc). It can also be used for password detection, an important proactive security feature as devastating cyber attacks (such as NotPetya) use password harvesting techniques to spread themselves and execute privileged code. Finally, another AWB feature is the ability to search for videos and compress them to save space.
Enterprise-class management features are absolutely crucial for any company that wants to succeed in Enterprise IT, or at the very least in any large scale environment. The TECHunplugged crew has for example witnessed at one customer how a 6-node Nutanix pilot deployment turned three years after into a 50+ clusters, 400+ nodes environment. None of this would be reasonably operable without central management capabilities; the analogy also applies to Cohesity and any other vendor aiming for this market.
But most importantly, the secondary data world is an ugly, fragmented one. Few people or organizations dare to look at the problem comprehensively, even less people are ready to take action upon this problem. The Cohesity Data Platform was a first step in the right direction, but fragmentation still existed in the sense that no central management capabilities were available. With Helios, Cohesity fixed this challenge and are better positioned to increase their footprint in the enterprise world, especially in organizations with a global presence for which central management capabilities are critical.
Helios is the first product announcement from Cohesity following their astounding $250 million D-Series funding round announced in June 2018. The company has been on a streak of non-technology related announcements during summer 2018 (Technology Pioneer at World Economic Forum, 300% sales revenue increase in FY2018, CRN 2018 Emerging Vendors List, etc.) and is very likely headed for an IPO in the next 12 to 24 months if it remains on its current growth course. So far it looks like all indicators are in the green (even in Cohesity’s own green livery), with a promising 2019 ahead.
TECHunplugged will continue watching this space with deep interest.