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April 02, 2009



Hmmm...struggling with this one Chuck. Maybe I'm missing it but seems like there's a long way to go here.

Would like to see more meat around auto-categorization and automated policy management and more discussion about getting rid of stuff. And would like to see some examples at scale (I know references this early are difficult). But these are the challenges clients face with scaling.

I like the vision but don't see the pieces yet. If I'm wrong I'll be happy to admit it so I'll keep an open mind:

Dave from Wikibon

John F.

"I wonder how many IT organizations will spot this -- and be interested in investing in infrastructure that helps them manage information like money? All kinds -- and not just email?"


I guess those would be the ones that invested in Symantec and Mimosa.

Don't you thing you're just a few years late and a couple major features short in this game?



Is this the same souce-one as was announced last autumn? Or is something now different?

Chuck Hollis

Very different -- thanks!

Chuck Hollis

Hi John

I would hope that you had better things to do with your time at NetApp than peppering my blog posts with cheap shots.

-- Chuck

Chuck Hollis

Hi, someone on some other blog said they had a problem leaving a comment here, and may be implying that I'm censoring it.

Sorry, whoever you might be, I have no record of you ever leaving a comment. Unless you remember to enter the "captcha" characters, it assumes you're a spambot and deletes your comment.

When I saw your post (thanks to Google Alerts!) I tried to leave a comment on your post, but I was denied access as I did not have an account on your site, and you had no mechanism for anyone to register for an account.

You might want to fix this.

I thought about sending you an email or twitter, but there was no name or email visible anywhere that I could see.

You might want to fix this as well.

In the spirit of fairness, here's a rather lengthy reply from our thoughtful but mysterious commenter.


-- Chuck

joseph martins

Good afternoon Chuck,

Captcha was presented to me and your blog responded as if my comment had been successfully submitted. I'm not sure why it failed, but I do apologize for the misunderstanding, and I appreciate the heads up. Note that we do not permit comments on the DMG blog for reasons explained in the section titled Setting Expectations.

Here is the body of the original comment which has been removed from our blog since it need not exist on both sites:

I'd like to offer a few comments about your post if I may.

The concept of information management (IM) pre-dates EMC. It was rebadged as ILM by the storage vendor community several years ago, but cradle to grave information management has been around for a very long time. The "Lifecycle" in ILM was always implied...the rest of us simply referred to it as information management. Storage vendors felt the need to squeeze an L in there.

Having written that, I will share with you what I believe to be the storage industry's single greatest early contribution to information management - a hard dollar ROI. The IM community had been floundering around for years in search of a meaningful way to quantify ROI. Frankly, most practitioners in the IM community are not familiar with the ins and outs of storage technology and management, and increased knowledge worker productivity is a tough sell. Hard dollar storage-related costs and cost-saving concepts such as HSM weren't even on our radar.

Regarding the tough sell, I'll forward a relevant presentation to you. You can also find it on my LinkedIn page.

In the section of your post titled "From Email to Content" you demonstrate an understanding of what IM folks have known all along - email is just another type of content. With that understanding you can now see that ERPs, CRMs, SRMs, SCMs, WCMs, ECMs, RMs etc, are all specialized forms of information management. At their core they accomplish the same IM goals. Hypothetically speaking one could develop a core repository and common IM features upon which vertical solutions such as resource management, code management, sales management etc could be layered. Some companies have been working on that problem for years, but they have all lacked one critical piece of the puzzle - control of the real estate. Ultimately, he who controls storage controls the information assets.

Most of today's IM applications are sold to customers as solutions that "manage the lifecycle of information from cradle to grave". That claim is inaccurate and misleading. Storage applications play an important role in cradle-to-grave IM too. But, a lack of communication between storage and information management applications means that storage applications can replicate, migrate, delete and manipulate data without authority and without warning, completely outside the purview of most information management applications. Imagine the following scenario:

A file is deleted from an IM application. Business users think the file is gone, deleted, purged from the system, but it's living in a dozen backups or an archive just waiting to be restored, discarded or discovered. The IM application does not communciate with nor control the storage environment. And storage applications do not check with IM apps to confirm that their actions [against specific files or data] are permissible. In fact, both environments typically rely upon their own separately managed policies and policy engines. It's an alarming disconnect between IM and IT that exists in nearly every application out there today, from corporate governance apps and ECMs, to ERPs, SRMs and SCMs. Come discovery time, customers will always be caught with their pants down.

Ultimately, I am hoping that efforts such as SourceOne will eventually eliminate the disconnect between backups, archives, production repositories and the many applications that use them. I'd like to see storage vendors come together and take ownership of the repositories - a common set of data models and APIs would be wonderful though I won't hold my breath (CMIS is a start). And, frankly, IM vendors should focus on building vertical solutions on top of the repositories.

That, to me, has always been the future of IM: common repositories managed in the storage fabric accessed and shared by purpose-built vertical solutions. It was what I began preaching in 2002 to anyone who would listen, and I haven't stopped. We have a long long way to go.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Chuck Hollis

  • Chuck Hollis
    SVP, Oracle Converged Infrastructure Systems

    Chuck now works for Oracle, and is now deeply embroiled in IT infrastructure.

    Previously, he was with VMware for 2 years, and EMC for 18 years before that, most of them great.

    He enjoys speaking to customer and industry audiences about a variety of technology topics, and -- of course -- enjoys blogging.

    Chuck lives in Vero Beach, FL with his wife and four dogs when he's not traveling. In his spare time, Chuck is working on his second career as an aging rock musician.

    Warning: do not ever buy him a drink when there is a piano nearby.

    Note: these are my personal views, and aren't reviewed or approved by my employer.
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