Over the coming months, the Tech Trailblazers team will catch up with more of our esteemed Tech Trailblazing winners. Recently we spokewith Storage Trailblazers, Catalogic Software’s Director of marketing, Peter Eicher to find out how the last year of trailblazing has been for our winners.
Tell us a little about your company and what it does
Catalogic Software is the creator of ECX, a Copy Data Management (CDM) platform that brings modernization and order to an existing datacenter environment without disruption. ECX delivers “in-place” copy data management by taking control of the copy functions (snapshots, replication, clones) of enterprise storage arrays and provides a management layer that allows the IT team to make use of its existing infrastructure and data in a manner that is efficient, automated, scalable and easy to use. Catalogic ECX modernizes IT processes, enables key use cases, and does it all without additional hardware.
What has Catalogic been doing in the storage space recently? Any new products/solutions/updates you’d like to tell us about?
Organizations need a more agile data center infrastructure to meet the increasing demands around system recoverability and data access for non-production purposes: Development and test, reporting, forensics, and so forth. Catalogic offers “IT modernizing” services such as infrastructure automation, user self-service, and API access on top of existing storage, virtualization and application (Oracle, SQL, etc.) infrastructure that is often stuck in the past from an operational perspective. Even newer platforms such as all-flash storage are value-constrained by the lack of modern IT services. ECX abstracts copy functionality into a uniform set of template-based processes that work the same across different storage vendor systems, dramatically reducing operational overhead. In one real world example, ECX reduced a customer’s dev-test deployment time by over 90%. This is what Catalogic and ECX are doing in the storage space these days.
What makes Catalogic different from its competitors?
Catalogic pioneered the concept of “in-place” CDM. That is, we allow the user to take advantage of the storage arrays, storage services and VMware infrastructure that they have already invested in, rather than requiring them to purchase new hardware and deploy an entirely new storage stack. Our “in-place” or integrated approach supports storage systems from Pure Storage, NetApp, IBM and EMC, with more on the way. Our in-place approach to CDM is especially needed for all-flash arrays which can do far more with data copies (because of high IOPs) but inherently lack the capability to successfully manage an active copy environment. By layering software-defined operational functions – automation, self-service, APIs – on top of storage hardware, ECX is defining a new market space that vendors such as IBM and EMC have recognized as critical to their business.
What main sectors are your customers in?
Our customers run the gamut, education to healthcare to finance and government. ECX helps all our customers make better use of their IT infrastructure.
What changes are you seeing in the storage market?
Storage is shrinking. Datacenter footprints are getting more compact as organizations consolidate and remove redundancies. Flash storage, with its ability to do in-line dedupe and compression, is fitting more data in far less physical space. The effect of this centralization/consolidation is that businesses are looking for solutions that offer the extreme agility and ease of use that a CDM solution, like ECX, offers. The goal is to maximize the value of their investments into storage by minimizing operational overhead and satisfying more internal constituents who are always clamoring for access to data.
As a winner in the TT Awards, what difference did it make?
It’s been great for Catalogic to be able to look back and point to last year’s Tech Trailblazers win as a point of pride and market validation. We were extremely pleased to win the TT accolade last year and proud to share the news with our stakeholders.
What’s changed in the company since the awards?
We’re bigger and we are growing by solving customers’ pain points. In the past year, we’ve been able to expand the storage systems we support including NetApp, IBM, EMC and Pure Storage. Since the demand for database CDM is especially critical, Catalogic added support for Oracle and SQL Server, which includes log management, RMAN integration and data masking. And we have several more database updates coming as we continue to broaden our coverage of critical applications.
Our technology partnerships have also opened to doors to new VAR partners (Catalogic is a 100% channel company). We have been adding new partners at a steady pace, as they recognize the value we bring to their business offerings.
What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced as a company?
We need the world to understand that Catalogic’s in-place Copy Data Management approach to CDM truly has advantages over our competitors’ offerings in how it orchestrates the entire copy lifecycle: creating copies (snapshots, replicas, clones), tracking copies via a meta-data catalog, using copies (mapping volumes, spinning up VMs), refreshing copies, moving copies (e.g. test to production) and finally, cleaning up copies to avoid waste and sprawl. ECX is the only way to go for CDM.
What advice would you give your younger startup self?
The development of ECX was a response from client needs to augment a previously existing solution. Once we developed ECX, we knew we had the keys to a kingdom. If we could turn back time, we would have brought ECX to market sooner rather than later.
For more on Catalogic Software please visit: www.catalogicsoftware.com