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August 11, 2005

NuView takes access and security view

Making a move into the very topical security and compliance market, NuView Inc has unveiled a version of its NAS global namespace software that among other things allows centralized management of access rights to distributed file data.

By CBR Staff Writer

The company, whose existing software is OEM’ed by NetWork Appliance Inc, says its new software will tighten up security and simplify compliance audits, as well as making life easier for end-users and IT administrators.

Called MyView, the software not only allows administrators to control which files end-users can access, but also which files they can actually see when they search a corporate network.

Stressing the conventional wisdom that by the far the greatest security threats come from fifth columnists inside organizations, NuView said that current access controls that are applied on a file level are too unwieldy to provide effective security.

Most IT administrators have no idea of which resources any particular end-user has access to, said NuView CEO Rahul Mehta.

In contrast, MyView will allow administrators to define profiles or sets of network resources — based on say geography or company organization — to which end-users can be granted access. A security audit can be completed with a simple query of which users have access to what resources, according to NuView. And when end-users search corporate networks, those are the only resources they will see.

Nick Nikols, senior analyst at the Burton Group, said: In security there’s always the issue of who has access to what but usually the what is applications. The NuView software makes it a lot easier to apply that control to files.

Referring to the need for a convergence of storage, security and data management, Brad O’Neill, analyst at the Taneja Group, said: The timing for this offering is excellent.

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No client or desktop agents are involved, and MyView exploits the same Microsoft Distributed File System service as used by NuView’s existing StorageX software. StorageX uses DFS to consolidate multiple NAS filer directories into one virtual directory or namespace, so cutting the workload of managing multiple file systems. On top of this virtualization StorageX provides services such as policy-based automatic migration of data between NAS tiers, data replication, and automatic failover between data sources.

MyView will not offer those services, but it will still virtualize multiple directories, so leading NuView to claim four virtues for the product in virtualization, personalization, organization, and security.

Nikols said that the abstraction achieved by MyView continues a direction formerly taken by Microsoft and Novell. But Microsoft and Novell never took it to this level. When the Internet arrived, people switched their focus to exposing file shares on the web, and to some extent development stagnated in this area. That certainly doesn’t mean there’s no market for this, especially if it is tied to ID management, he said.

NuView claims around 300 customers for its StorageX software, including those gained via its OEM deal with NetApp. Most of these customers are very large organizations, NuView said. The company would not comment on any prospects of NetApp extending its OEM deal to cover the new software. MyView is being beta tested by 25 customers, and will ship within the next 30 days, at a price of $25 per end-user.

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