Hammerspace the “missing link” for a cloud that is still missing

Hammerspace is the “missing link” that enables customers to access file data worldwide without the inherent costs and difficulties that come with trying to use only the cloud for such functionality.

That’s the view of Molly Presley, Senior Vice President of Marketing at Hammerspace, who said Hammerspace offers granular access to data from any location, which would be inconvenient and expensive with offering existing public cloud. This, she said, is because public cloud services cannot offer access to data from distributed global locations without increasing migration costs and management overhead.

“The cloud premise has not yet been achieved. Data gravity is very real,” Presley said, referring to the tendency for data to weigh heavily in some places, with migration a potentially time-consuming, expensive and complex task.

“Hammerspace provides the ability to aggregate data across cloud regions. We present metadata that the customer can see without moving the data unless they need it. »

This is the core of what Hammerspace offers, namely the ability to see an organization’s data and manage it from one place, regardless of the on-premises or cloud storage it is stored on. are found. As Presley described, this data is not moved in its entirety unless needed, or as specified by policy-based tools.

But what’s the benefit of just seeing the metadata?

“A lot of work is just knowing what data is there,” Presley said. “You don’t know what you don’t know until you see it and then decide what to do with it. Then we can move the data on a granular file basis, using, for example, placement in a local S3 region, and be able to predict in advance the need to migrate.

According to Johan Ballin, director of technical product management at Hammerspace, no other vendor is able to turn metadata into actionable data via policy settings in the same way.

“With Hammerspace, you can create workflows that tag data, describe it, and enforce policy,” Ballin said. “For example, after data is ingested, you can specify that it is moved after a certain time and prepared for processing by a certain application.”

Presley added, “There are no piles of IT tickets asking for data to be moved. Everything happens in the background according to the customer policy.

Presley cited British video production company Jellyfish Pictures in which workflow steps are flagged for processing in Autodesk ShotGrid.

Ballin has favorably pitted Hammerspace against IBM’s GPFS file system, called Spectrum Scale since 2015.

“Hammerspace is much simpler and more forgiving in terms of architecture,” Ballin said. “The real difference is that we don’t replicate data unless asked to.”

Presley added: “GPFS is more like a traditional HSM [hierarchical storage management system], so it requires the data to be rehydrated from slower storage. Hammerspace still has visibility into that first layer – metadata – that is always active in high performance storage, so we all want to overcome legacy architecture.

Hammerspace is part of a group of products that aim to provide global file access and collaboration with access to the latest version of files from anywhere. Competitors include Ctera, Nasuni, Panzura and Peer Software.

Harry D. Gonzalez