Austin-based object storage software vendor Caringo has announced the latest version of its Swarm software appliance. Originally a pure object storage platform [CAStor — it was relabelled in 2014], Swarm’s functionality has been expanded into a massively scalable storage platform which also handles data protection, management and archiving, and facilitates analytics with its enhanced search capabilities. From a functionality point of view, the big story with Swarm is those improved search capabilities. From a management and pricing point of view, the main change is that the formerly optional features have now been bundled into an all-inclusive pricing package.
“We have always had search, but now we are adding some significant new features,” said Tony Barbagallo, Vice President of Product at Caringo. “We now have a content portal that lets users run searches that are now savable and dynamically generated — so they can be rerun every time the user clicks on it. Previously, you could run ad hoc searches and queries, but couldn’t save them. Now you can, with a UI that follows whatever user management system you use.”
Barbagallo said that the optimized search means that Swarm 8 is able to perform Big Data analytics searching,
“This is a stack not just for the storage world but the analytics world,” he said. “It adds insight at scale, particularly in Big Data use cases, for organizations that want to see relationships between very large sets of information. For instance, one customer, a medical insurance cleaning house, wanted a way to analyze the files they store so they can sell additional products and services. By making a query search, you can run the data set into HDFS to run processes. This lets you find a needle in a very large haystack. There is no need to migrate data to a different platform to do the query, which makes it simpler and saves on licensing.”
Swarm is well suited for this task, Barbagallo stressed.
“Being able to search at scale is not easy to do, and for most organizations, it’s very complex,” he said. “We are where data lives most of the time. Because of the way we do search, we can plug into any application out there. It’s all about data search and management organization. The requirement is to be able to access data from wherever you want when you want it. Our skill is protecting information at scale, and now we make it a lot easier to plug into an analytics engine.”
The other major change with Swarm 8 is that all functionality is part of the standard package.
“With this launch, we make it easier for users to use Swarm, with all features included for one price,” Barbagallo said.” Before we had a lot of great features people didn’t use because they had to pay for them. Now all of this is included for the price of the software. This includes unique Swarm features like Darkive adaptive power conservation, all compliance features, HDFS, all multi-tenancy features for a public/private/hybrid cloud), and NoSQL-like search.
Other changes include object versioning and object renaming, which reduce the development effort of integration with file system-based applications and interfaces.
“Before, to rename an object you uploaded a new object and deleted the old one, and now you can now just swap out,” Barbagallo said. “Versioning now keeps different versions, to do it the same way that S3 does it.”
Swarm 8 is available now.