The CIO’s Triple Play: Cyber Resilience, Performance, and AIOps/DevOps

BrandPost By Eric Herzog, CMO, Infinidat
Jul 14, 2022

What’s a product’s value if it meets only a current need, and not a future need?

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CIOs of large enterprises have pain points that are complex, underscoring the need for suppliers to listen intently and understand their predicaments. The challenges of managing data, the lifeblood of any enterprise, are continuously evolving and require attention because ignoring them only makes the “pain points” worse.

CIOs and their teams look to the tech industry to solve their problems, develop new, cost-effective technology solutions, and make implementation of new solutions smooth and easy, with built-in flexibility. This article explores three examples of how listening to the concerns, and changing the requirements and needs of CIOs, has resulted in viable technological solutions that are now widely in demand.

  1. The need to improve cybersecurity by increasing cyber resilience
  2. The need for the lowest latency, while delivering the highest real-world application performance
  3. The need to incorporate AI operations (AIOps) and development operations (DevOps) as part of a modern IT strategy

As the chief marketing officer of Infinidat, I continually hear customer input and feedback, which feed into a strong cycle of continuous improvement. Product strategy must align with not only today’s needs but the anticipated, evolving needs of the future. A new product must help address or eliminate one or more pain points. Otherwise, what is its value?  This is the story of Infinidat’s comprehensive enterprise product platforms of data storage and cyber-resilient solutions, including the recently launched InfiniBox™ SSA II as well as InfiniGuard®, taking on and knocking down three pain points that are meaningful for a broad swath of enterprises.     

The need to improve cybersecurity by increasing cyber resilience

Cyber resilience is among the most important and highly demanded requirements of enterprises today to ensure exceptional cybersecurity and combat cyberattacks across the entire storage estate and data infrastructure. In comprehensive surveys by Fortune and KPMG in the last 12 months, cybersecurity has been cited as the No. 1 concern of CEOs. The continuous attempts at comprehensive theft and hostage-taking of valuable corporate data can be overwhelming. 

This naturally puts immense pressure on CIOs and CISOs to deal with the rapidly expanding threat landscape – and it’s much more than securing network connections. It now extends to the people at their desks or at the edges of the company network, creating weak points. Industry data confirms the average dwell time for an enterprise-level cyberattack is up to 287 days. The C-suite is rightly concerned about this shroud of secrecy and how eerily “patient” cyber criminals are, taking systematic approaches and looking for the tiniest of cracks to exploit. 

Cyber resilience must be part of an enterprise’s overall corporate cybersecurity strategy. One example of cyber resilience is the ability to recover known good copies of the enterprise’s data. When you’re able to do it – and do it quickly – then the leverage that the cyber attackers thought they had is dramatically reduced, if not completely eliminated. To have end-to-end resilience, an enterprise needs to build it into primary storage for the most critical apps and workloads, as well as secondary storage to protect backup copies of data. 

Infinidat added cyber resilience on its InfiniGuard® secondary storage system during the past year and, at the end of April 2022, across its primary storage platforms with the InfiniSafe Reference Architecture, encompassing Infinidat’s complete portfolio. InfiniSafe combines immutable snapshots of data, logical air gapping, a fenced forensic environment, and virtually instantaneous data recovery, and is now extended into the InfiniBox SSA II, as well as the entire InfiniBox family. 

“With the InfiniSafe Cyber Resiliency Technology extending into the InfiniBox portfolio, we’re able to provide our customers the peace of mind they need in a time filled with cyberattacks and data breaches,” said Trent Widtfeldt, Chief of Engineering, Technologent, a female-owned global IT solutions provider. “Technologent is known for partnering with the best technology vendors to ensure we bring the most efficient solutions to our customers, and Infinidat has always been a key partner in this area.”

The need for the lowest latency while delivering the highest application performance

CIOs and storage administrators have asked whether a performance void in enterprise data infrastructure could be filled – a void that no storage vendor had been able to meet to their satisfaction. It is the ability to provide consistent, ultra-low latency, super-fast response times for virtually every I/O that they process, not just great latency for an overall average of their I/Os. If this could be delivered, they said, it would provide them with valuable competitive differentiation for their real-world applications and workloads.

Although CIOs already know, for the most part, that most storage vendors can meet or exceed their requirements for bandwidth and IOPs, what they are really pointing to is the “new” storage performance battleground, which is latency. They articulate to anyone who will listen, and in a position to make it happen, how they want consistent ultra-low latency.

To address this customer demand, Infinidat developed the InfiniBox SSA II, delivering unprecedented latency. Enterprises have seen real-world workloads hit performance as fast as only 35 microseconds for storage performance. This is not an artificial “hero” number that no real application has ever seen, but an observed performance from real, live, customer applications. This enhancement allows customers to not only have optimal application and workload performance, but also allows for substantial storage consolidation, dramatically transforming storage performance, increasing efficiency, and reducing total cost. 

“Infinidat is squarely targeting this market segment with its InfiniBox SSA, and the vendor’s updated capabilities, including in particular the ability to deliver latencies as low as 35 microseconds and the InfiniBox SSA II’s new InfiniSafe cyber resilience support, make it an excellent fit for tier 0 workloads in the enterprise,” said Eric Burgener, Research Vice President, Infrastructure Systems, Platforms and Technologies Group, IDC.

The need to incorporate AIOps and DevOps as part of a modern IT strategy

CIOs have conveyed a common reality that they are under pressure to deliver nonstop operations within budget constraints, limited headcount, and short-term deadlines. A strategy to manage such converging forces cannot be cookie-cutter. Each enterprise has its own unique operating requirements. The challenge is for the IT team to deliver new capabilities that are tightly aligned with the organization’s specific needs – and to do it rapidly and with low risk. 

A smart move for CIOs, and other IT executives, is to exploit the underlying capabilities of the installed infrastructure. This has led IT leaders to demand that their infrastructures have the highest levels of autonomous automation and intelligence, along with proven extensions to enable further operational integration. This integration includes both interoperability with incumbent IT consoles as well as simple, trusted access to unique functionality and the creation of new capabilities. Additionally, it is critical that outdated fly-by-wire management controls are replaced with infrastructure intelligence, automation, and proven solutions.

Earlier this year, Infinidat introduced InfiniOps™, a collection of extensive software capabilities that exploit world-class AIOps functionality and expedite DevOps activities. By harnessing the unique operational awareness of InfiniVerse, IT teams have streamlined storage oversight and management to unprecedented levels of set-it-and-forget-it simplicity at their local site and across the globe. Infinidat also works closely with data center AIOps vendors, such as ServiceNow and VMware, so that Infinidat’s storage platforms are integrated into their cross-data center AIOps toolsets. Additionally, a proven set of IT tools are available to further integrate InfiniBox capabilities into IT operations for standard and container application deployment environments – at no additional cost.

IT must build upon a foundation of the highest performing, most available, and most intelligent infrastructure. InfiniBox delivers on these requirements with 100% availability, microsecond latency, multi-petabyte scale, and its Neural Cache.

Newly introduced InfiniOps technologies include InfiniVerse, a solution that delivers application to storage insights as a secure, cloud-based service. IT staff can see their entire storage infrastructure across multiple sites, including key indicators such as system health, rate of capacity consumption, and SAN/WAN performance compared to internal latency measurements. InfiniOps also offers a wide variety of tools to streamline IT operations, accelerate solution deployment, and reduce internal solution development risks.

Our customers are looking for enterprise storage solutions that deliver the utmost in availability, reliability, and performance. With the InfiniBox SSA II, Infinidat has done that and more. The InfiniBox SSA II has added sophisticated AIOps technology and comprehensive cyber resilience to the solution. At the same time, the InfiniBox SSA II continued Infinidat’s powerful “set-it-and-forget-it” ease-of-use architecture. 

All of this provides our customers with a highly differentiated enterprise storage platform that provides not only strong technical values, but critical business value as well.

For more information, visit Infinidat here.