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The positive side of Veritas

May 13, 20044 mins
Data Center

* Veritas continues to keep customers happy with existing products and fresh developments

My previous newsletter, written while I was at Veritas Vision, took Veritas to task for two reasons:  the company’s lack of attention to security solutions, and an over-eager marketing approach that told attendees of its users conference that it was the only vendor that could provide storage management over a heterogeneous infrastructure. 

My first point was that security – and most particularly, inside-the-firewall security – is important for any company that hopes to establish a utility-based infrastructure.  Both data and infrastructure must be protected so that they are available when needed.  My second point was that if heterogeneity is a differentiator for Veritas, it at least should own up to the fact that managing heterogeneous assets is also a differentiator for EMC, HP, IBM and a growing host of others.

The issue above notwithstanding, there is an awful lot that is positive about Veritas.  I talked with any number of Veritas customers and staff at the show, and here are some of the key takeaways you should be aware of.

If perchance you feel some needed features are missing from your Veritas software, just wait a while.  The company is pouring an enormous portion of its revenue back into R&D.  Expect internally developed products to keep on rolling.

Don’t be surprised to see Veritas management continue to mix in a few acquisitions as well.  Such purchases are likely to involve areas of technology outside of Veritas’s core competency of storage.  Look for them particularly to occur in technology areas where existing alliances do not seem to be helping out as well they should.  This might (and probably should) include gaining access to network monitoring and security solutions.

If you are not particularly happy with your Veritas product, you may well be in the minority.  The company’s user base is not only large, it is loyal, with the result that NetBackup customers are likely to look first to their current supplier when it is time to add storage resource management (SRM) or other solutions to their IT portfolios. 

While Veritas doesn’t yet have all the pieces necessary to provide a comprehensive IT utility model (neither do its competitors), it is expending a lot of development effort on what I consider the keystone technology for any on-demand capability: automation. A Veritas customer can expect to see automated discovery and error detection in CommandCentral, and will find that automated protection has been extended out to both desktops and laptops. 

The Ejasent acquisition, completed early this year, gives Veritas the ability to offer usage-based metering to its customers.  This will be of interest to anyone interested in implementing a utility model in the future, but also to customers right now who want to allocate costs sensibly according to the way their current storage assets are being consumed.  This capability will be folded into CommandCentral by year-end, but is available now as a stand-alone product.

Veritas customers are seeing good success with Veritas-based storage consolidation efforts.  After a panel discussion on the topic, I spent some time discussing the topic with one of the panelists.  He indicated substantial value received from the Veritas tools he uses at his shop.

So another Veritas users conference comes to an end.  While there were no earthshaking announcements this time, it’s clear that the company will continues to evolve its solutions by rolling out products that continue the corporate drive towards a utility computing model.  Progress is being made and Veritas’s competitors can expect to have their hands full.

In a few weeks, I’ll be spending time learning about what we can expect to see from Computer Associates and HP.  I’ll report back on those two gatherings as I have from my meetings with IBM and Veritas.  Meanwhile, I’ll try to find something interesting to write about in the intervening weeks.