HDS beefs up search for NAS, archiving platforms

By Kevin Komiega

—In an effort to navigate the tricky task of searching and retrieving unmanaged data in the data center, Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) has introduced a file and content services product that delivers common search, retention, movement, and protection of data across network-attached storage (NAS) and content archive environments.

The newly announced Hitachi Data Discovery Suite performs federated search across Hitachi's NAS Platform and the Hitachi Content Archive Platform (HCAP), and can extend these capabilities to ISV partners or custom applications. The suite lets users search multiple data sources with a single query from a single user interface.

Michael Hay, senior director of product strategy, HDS, says the Data Discovery Suite lives and breathes on a network appliance that is integrated with existing search capabilities of the HDS HCAP platform and extends that search technology to adjoining NAS devices.

"The goal of the Data Discovery Suite is to help users gain control of data that resides outside of content management or traditional archiving systems," he says. "The suite can submit queries and retrieve search results as a single logical index."

Hay says the Data Discovery software lets customers and ISV partners perform such functions as self-service file restoration, cross-platform search and retrieval, and reporting of file-based tiering, effectively making complex tasks associated with e-discovery simpler, more efficient, and cost-effective.

The software also enables enterprise content management, e-mail archiving, and other third-party applications to write directly to the Hitachi NAS Platform and migrate data to the HCAP for long-term data preservation.

The Hitachi Data Discovery Suite also brings data directly to users. By enabling customers to conduct their own searches and recover data from their own authorized files, the software significantly improves user productivity while ensuring data privacy, according to Hay. The Hitachi Data Discovery Suite has been integrated with Microsoft Active Directory and Windows Vista Gadget for search and file restoration from a user's desktop.

According to IDC, the cost of ineffective search is estimated at $5,251 per worker per year. If you crunch the numbers, large organizations with 1,000 workers are losing an estimated $5.25 million per year in lost productivity. Hay says when you layer the risks associated with failed or prolonged searches for legal discovery or compliance on top of those numbers, the cost can be even higher.

"The average office worker is losing a day of productivity just trying to find stuff. That is real money lost," says Hay. "We view rogue data as a critical problem the market and our customers are trying to solve. Even moderate amounts of uncontrolled rogue data can increase the potential of not finding the right data at the right time. Hitachi Data Discovery for Microsoft SharePoint is able to help our users reduce their e-discovery risk by simplifying steps required to both control and find rogue content. This is accomplished by allowing users to search for content stored in the Hitachi Content Archive platform and perform sampling via a Microsoft Vista desktop gadget."

Hitachi has also announced the availability of Hitachi Data Discovery for Microsoft SharePoint. According to Hay, Data Discovery for SharePoint gives users a way to archive files to the HCAP. Additionally, the Hitachi Data Discovery Suite for Microsoft SharePoint provides administrative searching across all content stored within HCAP. The software can span multiple SharePoint sites to allow for authenticated and authorized ubiquitous data access. With Hitachi Data Discovery for Microsoft SharePoint, users can also set up proactive RSS feeds that can detect rogue data or information relevant to a discovery request.

This article was originally published on March 19, 2008