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By | Chris Mellor 8th July 2015 16:39

Cain says Veritas is in fine fettle as able Symantec preps for split

Foundational and next-gen products for the data deluge

Data storage biz Veritas has announced five product releases and updates, and set out its product strategy as an independent operation during and after its separation from Symantec.

Symantec EVP and chief product officer Matt Cain divided the products destined for Veritas into foundational and next-generation categories, with the foundational products in four lines of business:

  • Backup and recovery software (NetBackup and Backup Exec)
  • Appliances
  • Information availability
  • Information intelligence – archiving, e-discovery, etc.

Where does Veritas go from here?

The strategy

Cain said Veritas's strategy starts from the recognition that enterprises face a data deluge. He says they will have to manage a tenfold increase in data over the next five years. Customers can't just get bigger and faster storage arrays to cope. Veritas will focus on information management software that works across heterogeneous storage hardware and software and hypervisor environments.

Enterprises are moving to hybrid cloud infrastructures as they try to balance public cloud cost-effectiveness with the security and performance on on-premises IT, and Veritas wants to help with this transition.

Its core products are being joined by next-generation ones that will combat data fragmentation; having data in many different repositories with different management facilities. They will also provide an ability for organisations to gain insight from the data they store – and, Cain points out, Veritas products touch a great deal of the information that's stored and have metadata about it.

Cain expects $125bn to be spent on Big Data this year and says a McKinsey analysis suggests there will be a shortage of 250,000 data scientists in 2018. It has to be easier to access and analyse the growing mass of stored data. He says that only about 1.5 per cent of a business's stored data has real value and the issue is how to find it.

He asserts the vast majority if it exists in general IT metadata, saying: "We already touch that information [and] we've become world class at cataloguing it."

The idea is to pool an organisation's different data stores together and unlock their value.

There should be one pane of management glass across the multiple silos and the provision of both information availability and information insight to customers. Veritas will invest in both, said Cain: "No-one can claim more heterogeneous support than we can [and] we're already working at enterprise scale."

"Customers," he declares, "have validated our strategy. This is not just a vision. We'll be delivering products. Information Map is the first one."

The products

The product updates and new releases are:

  • Foundational products
    • NetBackup up v7.7 adding enhanced VMware vSphere 6 and Hyper-V integration and support for hybrid-clouds using Amazon Web Services, Google Nearline and others
    • The InfoScale portfolio incorporates technologies underlying the Storage Foundation High Availability family to provide application availability and software-defined storage
    • Data Insight 5.0 extends unstructured data analytics to support governance across on-premises storage platforms and Box cloud storage, with the ability to monitor anomalous user activity and behaviour
  • Next-generation products
    • Information Map will glean metadata from NetBackup, store it in the cloud and present it through a visual navigation tool to identify areas of risk, value and waste across a customer’s primary content repositories (ones backed up by NetBackup)
    • The Resiliency Platform provides IT service continuity across multi-vendor physical and virtual environments

NetBackup 7.7 is up to thirty times faster than previous versions with its cloud performance.

The split

Veritas' operational separation from Symantec should take place in the first week of October this year, with the legal separation set for January 4, 2016. The acting general manager is John Gannon. Symantec is going to set up a Veritas board and that board will choose and hire a CEO for Veritas.

This contrasts with HP, which is similarly splitting itself into two, where the pair of CEOs have already been identified.

At the split point Veritas will have aproximately $2.6bn in annual revenues from its four lines of business.

There will be some 8,200 employees, with 4,400 in products and support, 2,900 in sales and marketing, and 900 in the general business administration area. All the product, support, sales and marketing people have been identified and are, we're told by Cain, completely focussed on Veritas already.

The strategy Cain has outlined provides a logical framework for product development, and should resonate well with customers and keep them on-side, as Veritas separates itself from Symantec and sets out on a solo path. Its CEO could well be John Gannon, an ex-USAF pilot, who came to Symantec in 2005 after five years at Quantum, where he rose to be president and chief operating officer. He sent seven years at HP before Quantum.

Can he get Veritas flying again? That is the big question.

The Resiliency Platform is available now. Data Insight 5.0 and the Information Map will be available later thus summer. ®

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