Savvis, a CenturyLink company, today announced the availability of Savvis Big Data Solutions, a suite of services to help organizations drive value from their data. This new offering combines existing Savvis services with new services.
“If you think from a very simple standpoint, what foundation services is a fully managed Hadoop distribution,” said Milan Vaclavik, Senior Director and Solution Lead for Savvis’ Big Data Solutions.
Savvis Big Data Solutions gives enterprises and government organizations access to the compute, storage and high-bandwidth network capabilities required to power virtually any analytics application. The suite includes Savvis’ managed services for Cloudera and MapR platforms based on Apache Hadoop.
“We’ve had the network. We’ve done a lot with cloud services. The IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) isn’t new. The physical boxes and the actual configuration isn’t the new piece,” said Vaclavik. “The new piece is that we’re taking all of what we’ve done and bringing that to big data. That Hadoop piece is really the new piece."
With a lot of interest in Hadoop in the marketplace, there still remains confusion on how to best leverage Hadoop. A lot of customers want it, but don't necessarily fully understand how to successfully implement it. “We’re approaching this in a workshop manner to come up with recommendations. This is not one size fits all," said Vaclavik. "We need to understand data usage and expectations and what the customer wants to get out of their big data implementation. If there’s a scenario where Hadoop is not a proper fit, then we won’t suggest it. But this is more the exception to the rule."
Savvis Big Data Solutions offers hosted, fully managed hardware and software services for optimizing data storage, integration, retrieval and analysis through:
- Enterprise-grade Infrastructure-as-a-Service capabilities, including scalable compute and storage platforms, software and security services;
- Secure, high-bandwidth network connectivity for accessing, integrating and processing massive amounts of data;
- Software licensing and operations management for Cloudera and MapR distributions of Apache Hadoop, including configuration, monitoring, upgrades and security;
- Big data planning and implementation services, including environment design, security planning and project management; and
- Consulting services for client business-case development.
Big Data Confusion Still Abounds
“Big data, big definitions, is what I like to say,” said Vaclavik. “There’s all kinds of definitions of what big data is. You put five people in a room, they’ll give you ten answers. The truth is that it’s very specific for particular customers. They might not have done an internal analysis of what they need. That’s one way we can help. This is more around business case development, to recommend an environment to establish what they need in an internal standpoint.
Part of this offering is a consulting piece. “We’ll go in and help,” said Vaclavik. "Analytics are reaching 'phase two' and customers are looking to better leverage their data. Customers are also looking to offload data from more expensive data warehousing and bring it into Hadoop from a cost savings perspective."
An Entry Point to Big Data
“One thing I want to emphasize is that this is our entry point to big data,” said Vaclavik. “We recognize that this is not a complete big data solution. When you start laying in analytics is when you get the full value. We will be enhancing the solution to include a broader set of services, including analytics. As we build these capabilities, we’ll be partnering with providers to bring these solutions to bring this to customers.”
He envisions two types of customers leveraging these solutions. The first is the type of customer that wants Savvis to host and manage their big data solution for them. The second set is more hands-on, who need help implementing something and desire to do so in a managed hosting setup.
"One of our key differentiators is that we’re bringing in network, managed services, all of our expertise and applying it to big data," said Vaclavik. "The marriage between Savvis and CenturyLink has been great, and has greatly benefited the network piece in particular."