WANdisco’s latest offering uses consensus technology – a key blockchain component – to manage data across enterprises’ multi-cloud environments.
Consensus technology is used to achieve agreement on a single data value among distributed processes or systems. These algorithms are also at the core of many blockchain technologies. WANdisco in December obtained a blockchain patent for its consensus technology, called Distributed Coordination Engine (DConE).
“Our technology solves a really hard problem of having a way to do distributed consensus across a wide-area network, not just a centralized network,” said Joel Horwitz, senior vice president of marketing at WANdisco. “That’s the essence of our company.”
It turns out this technology is also very useful in multi-cloud deployments.
LiveData for MultiCloud
So WANdisco employed DConE (pronounced DEE-cone) for its new multi-cloud management capabilities in its Fusion distributed computing platform. DConE powers the platform. And the new feature, called LiveData for MultiCloud, provides data replication, consistency, and access – all in real-time – across clouds. It also does massive zettabyte-scale data migrations. This means you don’t need to manually create snapshots or ship data in a physical box like Amazon Web Services’s Snowball or Google’s Transfer Appliance to move huge amounts of data into the cloud.
LiveData for MultiCloud uses consensus technology to maintain the perception of a single server system performing at LAN-speed, but in a distributed environment in which the servers may be thousands of miles apart. And it supports all major cloud object storage services, including Amazon Web Services (AWS) S3, Microsoft Azure Blob, and Google Cloud Storage.
“It is the only platform that enables continuous replication of data at petabyte scale with zero data loss and zero downtime across multiple cloud environments,” Horwitz said, adding that he recently asked an analyst why there aren’t more companies using blockchain to manage data across clouds. “His was response was, in essence, that the blockchains that exist today don’t have enough throughput,” Horwitz said. “The short answer: there just aren’t because it’s really hard to do.”
Who Is WANdisco?
WANdisco CEO David Richards and Chief Scientist Yeturu Aahlad co-founded the company in the U.K. in 2005. They grew it without raising any private equity, venture capital, or angel funding and took it public on the London Stock Exchange in June 2012. The initial public offering raised more than $24 million.
The company now has dual headquarters in San Ramon, California, and Sheffield, England. It claims hundreds of enterprise customers including Daimler, AMD, Cisco, and Morgan Stanley use its Fusion enterprise software with DConE for source code management, big data disaster recovery, and data center migrations.
The company also partners with all of the major cloud providers: AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, IBM, Alibaba Cloud, and Oracle. This includes an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) agreement with IBM, which resells WANdisco Fusion rebranded as IBM Big Replicate and is an embedded component of the IBM big data, cloud, and analytics products.
IBM, Alibaba OEM Agreements
In fact, Horwitz names IBM as WANdisco’s top competitor. “That’s why we formed an OEM partnership with them,” he said. “You can either go after them, partner with them, or ty to put them out of business. We choose to partner with IBM instead of putting them out of business.”
Last year the company secured a second major OEM sales agreement with Alibaba Cloud.
“We are embedded as a standard component in Alibaba Cloud so that’s kind of a big deal,” Horwitz said. “We’re pretty invasive in the stack in the sense that we are really reading the guts of files to make sure we’re only replicating the data we need to.”
While cloud vendors’ native backup tools and data transfer boxes comprise WANdisco’s primary competitors, Horwitz says No. 2 on the list is data management software companies like Veeam, which is a “big one,” he added. “But they are more focused on application data, terabytes instead of petabytes.”