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August 1, 2011

Symantec readies ‘Pinnacle’ private cloud availability

Builds on Veritas technology for cloud era

By Jason Stamper

Symantec’s $800m-a-year Storage and Availability Management Group is readying key new versions of its core technologies – code-named Pinnacle – that are hoped to help it manage customers’ backup and business continuity needs in the era of cloud, CBR can reveal.

The news was confirmed by Anil Chakravarthy, the group’s SVP, in an exclusive CBR interview. "Cloud will be a big focus for us in a major release towards the end of this calendar year," he said.

While he would not be drawn on too many details ahead of the official launch, he said that there will be new versions of ApplicationHA, Veritas Cluster Server and Veritas Operations Manager to help companies with their high availability, backup and business continuity needs in the era of virtualization and cloud.

"For us we think private cloud will be increasingly important," said Chakravarthy. "Today a lot of organisations have their own infrastructure but the resources tend to be tied to a particular application. We are seeing organisations moving from this dedicated to a more shared infrastructure, and with the new release towards the end of the year this will be a big focus for us."

Chakravarthy said the Pinnacle release will introduce the concept of a "virtual business service", where in a virtual environment things like the linkages between applications, virtual machines, storage and networking components are mapped in advance, with the intelligence for a change to one to generate an alert or even automatically kick off a remapping of critical infrastructure to avoid any unplanned downtime.

Much of Symantec’s high availability and backup technology comes from its $13.5bn acquisition of Veritas back in 2004. While Chakravarthy conceded that it was "clearly a difficult integration", he said that Symantec has been able to garner a number of synergies from the Symantec and Veritas technologies since – for example Symantec Norton now uses Veritas’ block-level scanning capabilities to seek out rootkits, and there has been cross-pollination of the technologies in the area of data loss prevention (DLP) too.

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Chakravarthy said his group had suffered a little since the Veritas technology was very strong in the Sun Solaris space: "Our revenue trended down as Solaris trended down, but over the past two years we’ve really seen business picking up on Windows, Linux, and virtual platforms, especially VMware," he said.

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