The Many Uses of Fabric
(It’s not what you think)
By Christopher A Stone, Polar Graphics
What we are talking about is StorageDNA’s new Data Management product DNAfabric and how to use it for less obvious applications.
DNAfabric is a phenomenal tool for managing your data. It was designed as a single application to index, analyse and manage all of a company’s data spread across multiple varied devices in different physical locations.
DNAfabric is unique and it is targeted at larger companies that want to know about, and be able to manage all of their data. But is this the only market, I don’t think so. Let’s look at some other uses for DNAfabric that are not so obvious.
As a Simple Low Cost WAN Accelerator
You can specify the WAN acceleration option when you license DNAfabric and this gives you file accelerated transfers just like other well-known file acceleration products out there. Okay, so what is special about that, well nothing except that the add on cost of the WAN accelerator with the base DNAfabric subscription is generally less expensive than just a UDP accelerator subscription from another supplier.
Put another way, you can buy the product just for the WAN acceleration feature and get the use of DNAfabric included for less money than most UDP accelerators.
As an additional bonus you can do bi-directional accelerated transfers using DNAfabric with WAN acceleration.
Working From Home
Even small organisations can gain a huge benefit by using DNAfabric and a cloud service to allow employees to work remotely. The latest COVID-19 pandemic is forcing workers to be able to self-isolate and work from home. All well and good if you are using a laptop and Microsoft office, but what if you are in post production. Editors, producers and others have to work at home, but all of their media is on shared storage behind the firewall at your facility.
What do you do? You could put everything in the cloud and run video editing tools there, but the workflow you have requires collaboration and iterative interchanges between your team members, and that requires lots of transfers and upload/download costs as you have to run on a premium cloud service such as AWS or Azure.This is where StorageDNA fabric comes in. Using a basic low-cost cloud storage provider such as Wasabi or Backblaze together with DNAfabric lets you achieve what you need at a fraction of the cost. DNAfabric will move and sync content between your primary storage and the cloud so that your editors can now work at home by downloading projects to a local external disk drive. They can upload renders, voice overs, metadata backups and anything else to the low-cost cloud storage and DNAfabric will then sync everything to the facility’s primary shared storage. While not instant, this workflow allows your employees to work from home and your business to carry on as normal.
System Upgrade Tool
Thinking of upgrading or replacing your storage but dreading the disruptions and downtime the day you start the process? It doesn’t have to be like that if you use DNAfabric.
Disk drives wear out and if your current shared storage is 5 years old or more then you are going to have to replace it. But you don’t want to impact your current work. Moving the data on your shared storage is a monumental task and to do it without affecting your editors is next to impossible. All your current apps know where the files are, but as soon as you start moving your content to a new home. Well it's chaos.
This is where DNAfabric comes in. It will index the existing shared storage and migrate it in the background to the new storage system. As it does so, it creates links that point to the files migrated onto the new storage. This allows you to carry on working as normal as your application still “sees” the files in their original location. Once you have everything moved over you can relink your new storage and de-commission the old one. The cost savings in continuing to work at full speed while you do this will pay for your DNAfabric license subscription many times over.
So, besides StorageDNA Fabric being a superb tool for managing and moving you data throughout your company you can use it for much simpler jobs, while still retaining the DNAfabric’s core functions of Data Visibility and Data Mobility to use as you wish.