On-Demand Cloud Storage Webcasts Worth Watching

As the SNIA Cloud Storage Initiative (CSI) starts our 2016 with a new set of educational programs and webcasts on topics of interest to those developing, implementing & managing cloud storage, I thought it might be a good time to remind everyone of the vendor-neutral educational work the CSI has delivered in 2015.

I’m particularly proud of the work the CSI has done through BrightTalk (a web based content delivery platform) in producing live hour-long tutorials on a wide variety of subjects.

What you may not know is that these are also recorded, and you can play them back when it’s convenient to you. I know that we have a global audience, and that when we deliver the live version it may be in the middle of your busy working day – or even in the middle of the night.

As part of SNIA, the CSI supports the development of technical storage standards; and that means some of our audience are developers. For those of you that are interested in more technical presentations we had two developer focussed BrightTalks:

Hierarchical Erasure Coding: Making Erasure Coding Usable

This talk covered two different approaches to erasure coding – a flat erasure code across JBOD, and a hierarchical code with an inner code and an outer code; it compared the two approaches on different parameters that impact the IT business and provided guidance on evaluating object storage solutions.

Expert Panel: Cloud Storage Initiatives – An SDC Preview

At the 2015 Storage Developer Conference (SDC) we presented on a variety of topics:

  • Mobile and Secure – Cloud Encrypted Objects using CDMI
  • Object Drives: A new Architectural Partitioning
  • Unistore: A Unified Storage Architecture for Cloud Computing
  • Using CDMI to Manage Swift, S3, and Ceph Object Repositories

We discussed how encrypted objects can be stored, retrieved, and transferred between clouds, how Object Drives allow storage to scale up and down by single drive increments, end-user and vendor use cases of the Cloud Data Management Interface (CDMI), and we introduced Unistore – an innovative unified storage architecture that efficiently integrates heterogeneous HDD and SCM devices for Cloud storage systems.

(As an added bonus, all these SDC 2015 presentations and others can be found here http://www.snia.org/events/storage-developer/presentations15.)

OpenStack has had a big year, and the CSI contributed to the discussion with:

OpenStack File Services for High Performance Computing

We looked at how OpenStack can consume and control file services appropriate to High Performance Compute in a cloud and multi-tenanted environment and investigated two approaches to integration. One approach is to have OpenStack manage the storage infrastructure services using Cinder, Nova and Neutron to provide HPC Filesystem as a Service. We also reviewed a second option of using Manila file services for OpenStack to control the HPC File system deployment and manage the exports etc. We discussed the development of the Lustre Manila driver and its current progress.

Hybrid clouds were also in the news. We delivered two sessions, specifically targeted at end users looking to understand the technologies:

Hybrid Clouds: Bridging Private & Public Cloud Infrastructures

Every IT consumer is using cloud in one form or another, and just as storage buyers are reluctant to select single vendor for their on-premises IT, they will choose to work with multiple public cloud providers. But this desirable “many vendor” cloud strategy introduces new problems of compatibility and integration. To provide a seamless view of these discrete storage clouds, Software Defined Storage (SDS) can be used to build a bridge between them. This presentation explored how SDS, with its ability to deploy on different hardware and supporting rich automation capabilities, can extend its reach into cloud deployments to support a hybrid data fabric that spans on-premises and public clouds.

Hybrid Clouds Part 2: Case Study on Building the Bridge between Private & Public

There are significant differences in how cloud services are delivered to various categories of users. The integration of these services with traditional IT operations remains an important success factor but also a challenge for IT managers. The key to success is to build a bridge between private and public clouds. This Webcast expanded on the previous Hybrid Clouds: Bridging Private & Public Cloud Infrastructures webcast where we looked at the choices and strategies for picking a cloud provider for public and hybrid solutions.

Lastly, we looked at some of the issues surrounding data protection and data privacy (no, they’re not the same thing at all!).

Privacy v Data Protection: The Impact Int’l Data Protection Legislation on Cloud

Governments across the globe are proposing and enacting strong data privacy and data protection regulations by mandating frameworks that include noteworthy changes like defining a data breach to include data destruction, adding the right to be forgotten, mandating the practice of breach notifications, and many other new elements. The implications of this and other proposed legislation on how the cloud can be utilized for storing data are significant. This webcast covered:

  • EU “directives” vs. “regulation”
  • General data protection regulation summary
  • How personal data has been redefined
  • Substantial financial penalties for non-compliance
  • Impact on data protection in the cloud
  • How to prepare now for impending changes

Moving Data Protection to the Cloud: Trends, Challenges and Strategies

This was a panel discussion; we talked about various new ways to perform data protection using the Cloud and many advantages of using the Cloud this way.

You can access all the CSI BrightTalk Webcasts on demand at the SNIA Website. Many of you will also be happy to learn that PDFs of the Webcast slides are also available there.

We had a good 2015, and I’m looking forward to producing more great educational material during 2016. If you have a topic you’d like to see the CSI cover this year, please comment below in this blog. We value input from all.

Thanks for your support and hopefully we’ll see you some time this year at one of our BrightTalk webcasts.

Mobile and Secure Healthcare: Encrypted Objects and Access Control Delegation

Healthcare privacy and data protection regulations are among the most stringent of any industry. On January 28th, SNIA Cloud Storage will host a live Webcast to discuss how healthcare organizations can securely share health data across different cloud services.

Hear experts Martin Rosner, Standardization Officer at Philips and David Slik, Co-Chair, SNIA Cloud Storage Technical Work Group explore how Encrypted Objects and Delegated Access Control Extensions to the Cloud Data Management Interface (CDMI) standard permits objects to freely and securely move between clouds and clients with enhanced security and auditability.

You’ll learn:

  • Protecting health data from alteration or disclosure
  • How Cloud Encrypted Objects work
  • How Delegated Access Control works
  • CDMI for Electronic Medical Records (EMR) applications
  • Healthcare use cases for implementing securely sharing data in the cloud

This Webcast will be live, so please bring your questions. I encourage you register today. We hope to see you on the 28th.

Q&A – The Impact of International Data Protection Laws on the Cloud

The impact of international data protection legislation on the cloud is complicated and constantly changing. In our recent SNIA Cloud Storage Webcast on this topic we did our best to cover some of the recent global data privacy and data protection regulations being enacted. If you missed the Webcast, I encourage you to watch it on-demand at your convenience. We answered questions during the live event, but as promised we’re providing more complete answers in this blog. If you have additional questions, please comment here and we’ll reply as soon as we can.

The law is complex, and neither SNIA, the authors nor the presenters of this presentation are lawyers. Nothing here or in the presentation should be construed as legal advice. For that you need the services of a qualified professional.

Q. What are your thoughts on Safe Harbour being considered invalid, and the potential for a Safe Harbour 2

A. Since 6 October 2015 when the European Court of Justice invalidated the European Commission’s Safe Harbour Decision, there’s been a lot written about Safe Harbour 2 in the press. But it was clear that a renegotiation was essential two years before that, when discussions for a replacement were started. Many think (and many hope!) that a new and valid agreement in terms of Europe’s Human Rights legislation will be settled between the US and Europe sometime in March 2016.

Q. Are EU Model Clauses still available to use instead of BCRs (Binding Corporate Rules)?

A. EU-US data transfers facilitated by the use of model clauses probably today fail to comply with EU law. But as there appears to be no substitute available, the advice appears to be – use them for now until the problem is fixed. Full guidance can be found on the EC website.

Q. What does imbalance mean relative to consent?

A. An example might help. You might be an employee and agree (the “consent”) to your data being used by your employer in ways that you might not have agreed to normally – perhaps because you feel you can’t refuse because you might lose your job or a promotion for example. That’s an imbalanced relationship, and the consent needs to be seen in that light, and the employer needs to demonstrate that there has been, and will be, no coercion to give consent.

Come See SNIA at the Software-Defined Infrastructure Summit

Demand for software-defined infrastructure (SDI) is on the rise, and with good reason. SDI helps data centers meet the challenges of cloud computing, big data/analytics, mobility and social media, in an agile and cost-effective way.  I’m pleased to announce that SNIA will be an active participant at next week’s Software-Defined Infrastructure Summit in Santa Clara, CA, December 1-3.

My colleagues and I at the SNIA Cloud Storage Initiative have organized a “Working with OpenStack” Seminar that kicks off the Summit on Tuesday, December 1.

I will keynote an OpenStack fireside chat along with Chris DePuy, VP, at Dell’Oro Group. We’ll be discussing the SNIA Cloud Data Management Interface (CDMI) and its interface with OpenStack, OpenStack implementations, how standards play, and the future of open source in the 21st century.

My keynote will be accompanied by additional SNIA talks in the Introduction to OpenStack session and the Application Management session:

  • Sam Fineberg, PhD, SNIA Cloud Storage Initiative member and Distinguished Technologist at Hewlett Packard Enterprise Storage, will provide an overview of the storage aspects of OpenStack including the core projects for block storage (Cinder) and object storage (Swift), and the new shared file service (Manila). He’ll cover some common configurations and use cases for these technologies, and discuss how they interact with the other parts of OpenStack.
  • Richelle Ahlvers, SNIA Open Source Task Force member and Principal Storage Management Architect at Avago Technologies, will discuss application integration in OpenStack and how SNIA-developed standards enable cross-vendor management interoperability and help open source projects interoperate with more industry solutions.

Tuesday’s Seminar day will include additional sessions from leaders in OpenStack, Ceph, and Software Defined Storage. SDI Summit days 2 and 3 will provide information on hardware, software, and data center technology and applications of software-defined infrastructure featuring keynotes from IBM, Intel, Red Hat, and VMware, all SNIA member companies.  It’s a must attend event.

SNIA will also be exhibiting at the Summit. Please stop by booth #408 to learn how SNIA standards are used in open source projects including cloud data management, non-volatile memory, self-contained information retention, and storage management. We will also have information on SNIA programs such as membership, certification, conformance testing, and conferences.

SNIA members and colleagues can use the code SPGP to receive a $100 discount on any level of SDI Summit registration. I hope to see you in Santa Clara!

Upcoming Webcast: The Impact of International Data Protection Legislation on the Cloud

Data Privacy vs. data protection has become a heated debate in businesses around the world as governments across the globe are proposing and enacting strong data privacy and data protection regulations. Join us on November 18th for our next Cloud Storage live Webcast “Data Privacy vs. Data Protection: The Impact of International Data Protection Legislation on the Cloud.

Mandating frameworks that include noteworthy changes like defining a data breach to include data destruction, adding the right to be forgotten, mandating the practice of breach notifications, and many other new elements are literally changing the rules when it comes to data protection. The implications of this, and other proposed legislation, on how the cloud can be utilized for storing data are significant. Join this live Webcast to hear:

  • “Directives” vs. “regulation”
  • General data protection regulation summary
  • How personal data has been redefined
  • Substantial financial penalties for non-compliance
  • Impact on data protection in the cloud
  • How to prepare now for impending changes

Our experts, Bob Plumridge, SNIA Europe Board Member; Eric Hibbard, Chair SNIA Security TWG, and I will all be available to answer your questions during the event. I encourage you to register today for this timely discussion. We hope to see you on November 18th!

Moving Data Protection to the Cloud: Key Considerations

Leveraging the cloud for data protection can be an advantageous and viable option for many organizations, but first you must understand the pros and cons of different approaches. Join us on Nov. 17th for our live Webcast, “Moving Data Protection to the Cloud: Trends, Challenges and Strategies” where we’ll discuss the experiences of others with advice on how to avoid the pitfalls, especially during the transition from strictly local resources to cloud resources. We’ve pulled together a unique panel of SNIA experts as well as perspectives from some leading vendor experts Acronis, Asigra and SolidFire who’ll discuss and debate:

  • Critical cloud data protection challenges
  • How to use the cloud for data protection
  • Pros and cons of various cloud data protection strategies
  • Experiences of others to avoid common pitfalls
  • Cloud standards in use – and why you need them

Register now for this live and interactive event. Our entire panel will be available to answer your questions. I hope you’ll join us!

 

Cloud Storage Development Challenges – An SDC Preview

This year’s Storage Developer Conference (SDC) is expected to draw over 400 storage developers and professionals. On August 4th, you can get a sneak preview of key cloud topics that will be covered at SDC in this live Webcast where David Slik and Mark Carlson Co-Chairs of the SNIA Cloud Technical Work Group, together with Yong Chen, Assistant Professor at Texas Tech University will discuss:

  • Mobile and Secure – Cloud Encrypted Objects using CDMI
  • Object Drives: A new Architectural Partitioning
  • Unistore: A Unified Storage Architecture for Cloud Computing
  • Using CDMI to Manage Swift, S3, and Ceph Object Repositories

You’ll learn how encrypted objects can be stored, retrieved, and transferred between clouds, how Object Drives allow storage to scale up and down by single drive increments, end-user and vendor use cases of the Cloud Data Management Interface (CDMI), and we’ll introduce Unistore – an innovative unified storage architecture that efficiently integrates heterogeneous HDD and SCM devices for Cloud storage systems.

I’ll be moderating the discussion among this expert panel. It should be an enlightening and lively hour. I hope you’ll register now to join us.

 

SNIA CSI Welcomes Glyn Bowden

At our annual SNIA Members’ Symposium in San Jose, the Cloud Storage Initiative (CSI) elected our 2015 CSI board. I’d like to officially welcome our newest board member, Glyn Bowden from HP. HP now joins our growing list of member companies.

The CSI is committed to the adoption, growth and standardization of cloud storage and related cloud data services to promote interoperability and portability of data stored in the cloud. CSI leads as an industry-neutral authority on cloud storage environments and is committed to educating vendor and end user communities on cloud storage & industry standardization benefits.

It’s only the beginning of March and we’ve already hosted several educational Webcasts on topics ranging from OpenStack Cloud Storage and OpenStack Manila, to CDMI and the LTFS Bulk Transfer Standard. All CSI Webcasts are available on-demand. I encourage you to check then out.

New SNIA-CSI Webcast: LTFS Bulk Transfer Standard

Mark your calendar for February 10th as we conclude our Cloud Developer’s series by hosting a live Webcast on the LTFS Bulk Transfer Standard. LTFS (Linear Tape File System) technology provides compelling economics for bulk transportation of data between enterprise cloud storage.

This Webcast will provide an update on the joint work of the LTFS and Cloud Technical Working Groups on a bulk transfer standard that uses LTFS to allow for the reliable movement of bulk data in and out of the cloud, and mechanisms for verification, error handling and the management of namespaces. Register now to hear David Slik, Co-Chair of the SNIA Cloud Storage Technical Work Group, discuss:

  • LTFS standard mandate and history
  • LTFS adoption and use cases
  • LTFS bulk transfer to, from, and between clouds
  • Error handling and recovery
  • Security considerations

I’ll be hosting the event, taking your questions, and hopefully shedding some light on the importance of this standard. I hope you’ll join us.

 

OpenStack Manila Webcast – Shared File Services for the Cloud

On January 29th, we continue our Cloud Developer’s series by hosting a live Webcast on OpenStack Manila – the OpenStack file share service. Manila provides the management of file shares (for example, NFS and CIFS) as a core service to OpenStack. Manila currently works with a variety of vendors’ storage products, including NetApp, Red Hat, EMC, IBM, and with the Linux NFS server.

In this Webcast we will:

  • Introduce the Manila file share service
  • Review key Manila concepts
  • Describe the logical architecture of Manila and its API structure
  • Explain what’s new in Juno, the latest release of OpenStack
  • Highlight the roadmap for Manila in the next release, OpenStack Kilo, and beyond

Register now for this live event that we expect will be informative and interactive. I hope you’ll join us.