Andres Rodriguez is founder and CTO of Nasuni and former CTO of the New York Times.
When it comes to scaling infrastructure for global expansion, the future is now. Industriy-leading organizations are proving this every day by using a cloud-native global file system in conjunction with private or public cloud object storage to lower their storage costs by 60 percent – all while simultaneously enabling the quick access to unified data and collaboration organizations need as they expand across national lines. These organizations are already changing how entire industries work and showing in very real terms what’s possible when employees have access to the files they need regardless of where either are located. Consider these real-world examples:
- Enabling a follow-the-sun software development cycle for video game production: When one of the world’s most prominent video game companies found that it was costing more and taking longer for its developers on four continents to share code and test it for new game releases, the company turned to our cloud-native global file system in conjunction with Amazon Web Services’ Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). Because developers can now collaborate far faster – large files of new code are now shared 10 times faster than was possible before and a global file lock ensures version control – the company is able to complete 30 builds a day. This enables it to release games on a recurring, continual cadence that was not possible before.
- Creating a client-centric global architectural design studio: The CEO of one of the world’s most award-winning architecture and design firms envisioned being able to bring the best talent to the client regardless of which of the company’s 25 international studios they worked out of; however, the company’s WAN acceleration systems were no longer able to effectively synchronize or share the large BIM files used by architects today. Backup and recovery was also a challenge and would cost the firm millions of dollars each year. Today, using a cloud-native global file system and Amazon S3, the firm’s more than 2,500 designers collaborate with ease while sharing files within a single global name space which is further parsed with artificial intelligence and machine learning applications to drive intelligence, insights and knowledge. Not only did the project deliver a significant competitive advantage – designers contribute their expertise to projects anywhere in the world – and deliver a full return in under six months, but it also eliminated the need for existing backup and DR systems.
- Unleashing creative talent to better serve clients around the world: An iconic advertising agency knew that being creative requires the sharing of ideas, but it was getting difficult for the company's designers to collaborate as the company grew through acquisitions to have a location in virtually every major city in the world. By switching from traditional NAS and backup to a cloud-native global file system and IBM Cloud Object Storage with VMware-based virtual applications in each office, the agency empowered its creative experts to work with each other from any location while also radically lowering the costs and administrative burden associated with the storage and protection of creative files. Today, the company has more than 3.2 petabytes of data in its cloud file system that global users can access immediately.
These are just a few examples of the global scale it is now possible for organizations to achieve, but the benefits don’t end there. Law firms are using the same approach to quickly spin up additional capacity and enable collaboration among lawyers when new cases and requirements for e-discovery arise. Health care organizations are using it to effectively share, analyze and store more advanced images – 3D mammography scans for example, are more than 20x larger than their 2D predecessors. And enterprises of all kinds are utilizing it to negate the danger of ransomware by taking snapshots of their global file share at regular intervals.
All of this is occurring as IT departments take the opportunity they now have to free themselves from NAS-related tasks and instead use that time to focus on high-value activities. The future, when enterprises of all kinds and sizes can realize the potential of the cloud to enable global expansion, is now.
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