Microsoft looks to simplify IoT with SaaS for new release

Microsoft has announced the launch of Microsoft IoT Central, a software as a service (SaaS) offering which aims to reduce the complexity of Internet of Things solutions for customers.

The new launch goes hand in hand with Microsoft’s current platform as a service (PaaS), Azure IoT Suite, built on the Azure cloud, with the latter enabling deep customisation and control of implementations. IoT Central ‘has the potential to dramatically increase the speed at which manufacturers can innovate and bring...

By James Bourne, 24 April 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Microsoft, SaaS , Software, Storage.

Cloud pricing war moves from VMs to object storage, 451 Research argues

The battlefield for cloud pricing will shift from virtual machines to object storage, with databases among others undergoing similar pressures in the next 18 months, according to the latest note from 451 Research.

The trend of vendors undercutting each other for VMs has long been apparent; take January last year as just one example, where Microsoft announced price reductions of up to 17% on its Azure D-series...

By James Bourne, 20 April 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Software, Storage, Vendors.

Get to know your cloud storage bill: How to choose the best options

When it comes to using a public cloud, there are incredible advantages – for a price. But what are you really paying for?

While the flat rate you see advertised may be appealing, there are several details that can raise or lower your cloud storage bill. Could you be paying for something you don’t need, and how can you lower your expenses by factoring in certain specifics before you choose a provider? Get a closer look at your cloud storage bill:

Itemising...

By Rick Delgado, 15 March 2017, 1 comment. Categories: Hybrid, Software, Storage.

Box goes cash flow positive for first time with ‘incredible’ Q417

Cloud storage provider Box has announced it is cash flow positive for the first time after posting what it calls an ‘incredible’ fourth quarter – yet shares fell in the immediate aftermath of the results.

The company described the 2017 fiscal year as a ‘milestone’, hitting a record $109.9 million (£x) in quarterly revenue which represented a 29% from this time last year, with $398.6m, an increase of 26%, being the whole year’s total.

“Q4 was an incredible quarter for Box,...

By James Bourne, 03 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Economy, Enterprise, Software, Storage.

AWS says human error to blame for S3 outage which took down multitude of sites

Earlier this week, Amazon Web Services’ (AWS)’ S3 (simple storage service) suffered an extended period of service disruption knocking a multitude of sites and businesses offline – and the fault was all down to good old fashioned human error, according to the company.

According to a note published to customers, the fault occurred during a debugging session. “At 9:37AM PST, an authorised S3 team member using an established playbook executed a command which was intended to remove a small...

By James Bourne, 03 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Amazon, Data Centres, Data Management, Disaster Recovery, Infrastructure, Storage.

Amazon, Apple and Microsoft vow to improve cloud conditions after CMA review

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Amazon, Apple and Microsoft have vowed to improve their terms and conditions of cloud storage contracts after a review from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), the body has announced.

The giants join BT, Dixons Carphone, Dropbox, Google, JustCloud, Livedrive and Mozy in moving forward with improved conditions. Common areas where Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft will make changes include giving ‘adequate notice’ to customers before significant changes are made to the...

By James Bourne, 20 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Compliance, SLA, Software, Storage.

Software-defined storage, hybrid clouds, and getting the performance right: A guide

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In today’s data-intensive, hyper-connected world, storage solutions built on the vertical scaling model have become impractical and expensive. Enterprises are driven by the need to remain competitive while storing and managing petabytes of data. In this vein, ESG senior analyst Mark Peters believes that there is at last a straight line between how storage is configured and business value – if organisations can...

By Stefan Bernbo, 16 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Data Centres, Hybrid, Infrastructure, Software, Storage.

Threat from cloud providers keeps MSPs up at night – with Google the biggest challenger

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The majority of managed service providers (MSPs) believe their hottest competition is coming from cloud providers as opposed to fellow MSPs, with Google the vendor to fear most, according to a new piece of research from Sonian.

The study, released today and titled ‘A New World Order: How MSPs are Trying to Survive and Thrive in a Cloud-First World’, featured responses from more than 300 managed service vendors, and found in general a rather nervous...

By James Bourne, 07 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Data Management, Google, Storage, Vendors.

Dropbox makes Paper generally available and hits billion-dollar revenue milestone

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Cloud storage firm Dropbox has announced two new products focusing on cross-platform storage and collaboration, as well as revealing it has become the fastest software as a service (SaaS) vendor to hit the $1 billion revenue run rate threshold.

According to various reports, Dropbox CEO Drew Houston announced the financial milestone at an event in San Francisco earlier this week. Fastest of course does not mean first; the company has a way to go before it catches up with the likes...

By James Bourne, 02 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Collaboration, SaaS , Software, Storage.

Bitcasa posts cryptic farewell message on website

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Bitcasa, the developer-friendly cloud storage platform based in Mountain View, is ‘no more’ according to a statement from former CEO Brian Taptich.

The statement, which appears on the Bitcasa homepage and is redirected to from other pages on the site, is cryptic in tone, only noting that the company has “become a part of something much, much bigger.” A VentureBeat article...

By James Bourne, 06 January 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Developers, Storage.

Why analytics and data storage will lead cloud adoption in 2017

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  • U.S.-based organisations are budgeting $1.77M for cloud spending in 2017 compared to $1.30M for non-U.S. based organisations.
  • 10% of enterprises with over 1,000 employees are projecting they will spend $10M or more on cloud computing apps and platforms throughout this year.
  • Organisations are using multiple cloud models to meet their business’s needs, including private (62%), public (60%), and hybrid (26%).
  • By 2018 the typical IT department will have the minority of their apps and platforms (40%) residing in on-premise...

By Louis Columbus, 05 December 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Adoption, Data & Analytics, Data Management, Research, Software, Storage.

Latest survey data warns SMBs are not using automation for cloud backups

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Almost 70% of small businesses in a survey from B2B analyst and reviews firm Clutch say they rely on their cloud storage provider for backups, with only 15% opting for automated services and 12% not bothering at all.

The findings appear as the second of two reports on SMBs and cloud strategy, with the first in November advising that many small firms are risking their...

By James Bourne, 02 December 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Data Management, Security, Software, Storage.

Box on track for positive free cash flow target after solid Q317 results

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Cloud storage provider Box has announced its Q317 financial results, with revenue hitting a record $102.8 million (£81.3m), an increase of 31% on the same time last year.

Billings in the third quarter was $112.4m, up 26% from this time last year, while GAAP operating loss was at $37.8m, lower than expected. The company says it is on track to achieve positive free cash flow by the end of Q4, while its guidance has been raised to $397-$398m, up from $394-$396m.

“Our results this...

By James Bourne, 01 December 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Infrastructure, Software, Storage.

Clutch survey warns about security of small businesses using free cloud storage

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Small businesses continue to put security as their main priority when selecting a cloud storage provider, yet many continue to risk their security by choosing free solutions, according to a new survey from analyst firm Clutch.

According to the survey, which polled almost 300 small and medium businesses who use at least one cloud storage platform, 25% of respondents admit they use a free cloud storage product, compared to 71% who said their organisations pay for cloud storage.

More...

By James Bourne, 16 November 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Research, Security, Software, Storage.

How to reduce write amplification on NAND chips in a cloud storage system

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Solid-state disk (SSD) technology using integrated circuit assemblies is considered to be a readily available, drop-in replacement for discrete hard disks and is used to increase throughput in large cloud storage networks. But unfortunately, these devices introduce the problem of write amplification (WA) into a cloud storage system.

Reducing this occurrence is of paramount concern to most system administrators who use NAND chips in these situations because it reduces the lifespan of these chips and...

By Ariel Maislos, 09 November 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Software, Storage.

What will 2017 bring for the storage industry?

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In a field as competitive as the storage market is, knowing what’s going to happen before it actually happens can be extremely valuable. And right now, the storage market is going through some big transitions, some of which are upending the industry.

This is kind of to be expected when dealing with a business that incorporates the latest technological advances, but even with that in mind, the rapid evolution underway at the moment is impressive to watch. The storage market as we...

By Rick Delgado, 07 November 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Software, Storage, Trends.

Cloudian raises $41m for ‘rapid adoption’ of object storage platform

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Hybrid cloud object storage system provider Cloudian has announced the completion of a $41 million (£33.8m) financing round, with the funds helping the company expand sales and marketing as well as growing international operations.

The funding round includes existing investors including Intel Capital, INCJ, Eight Roads, and Goldman Sachs, as well as new investors Lenovo, City National Bank, Epsilon Venture Partners, and DVP Investment.

“Connected devices are already...

By James Bourne, 28 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Software, Storage.

Overcoming the Achilles heel of flash storage: Making flash last longer

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More corporations than ever are taking advantage of flash storage, and you use it every day – be it in your computer, phone, wearable device, or in the USB drive you back up your data on. It’s faster, more durable, and more reliable than a spinning disk, but it still does have one weakness: it deteriorates over time.

In theory, all of the flash’s advantages eventually go out the window as its lifespan wanes, and since it’s more expensive than a spinning disk,...

By Rick Delgado, 27 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Data Management, Storage, Virtualisation.

Box and Skyhigh Networks come together for greater cloud security and governance

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Cloud security services provider Skyhigh Networks and enterprise cloud storage firm Box have announced a partnership designed to enable greater data governance for Box customers.

Users can identify sensitive data, automatically classify it, and enforce collaboration control policies through Skyhigh and Box Security Classification, all without requiring any change in customer behaviour.

To put the partnership into context, take a situation where an employee uploads a document with...

By James Bourne, 21 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Security, Software, Storage.

How cloud storage became a target for hackers – and what can be done about it

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With the recent revelations that Yahoo! experienced a hack in 2014 where the accounts of around 500 million users were compromised, it brings back into focus the importance of businesses ensuring their customers’ data is always protected.

More and more businesses are now using the cloud to store their data. As with all new technologies though, hackers will look to exploit any security vulnerabilities they can find. While it is not yet clear whether the attack on Yahoo! was on a...

By David Midgley, 20 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Security, Software, Storage.