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VMblog Expert Interview: Noemi Greyzdorf Explores Vcinity and Vcinity Data Access Platform (VDAP)


Vcinity increases the agility and velocity of digital transformation for enterprises by enabling applications to instantly access and operate on data regardless of where it exists. Its solutions eliminate the necessity to move, copy, or cache data near compute.

To learn more, VMblog reached out to Noemi Greyzdorf, the VP of Marketing at Vcinity.

VMblog:  What is the main challenge that Vcinity solves for customers today?

Noemi Greyzdorf:  Vcinity Data Access Platform eliminates the effects of latency over WAN, enabling instant, secure access to data anywhere in the world without downloading, uploading, copying, pre-caching or pre-staging data. This facilitates operation in truly hybrid environments, where data can be accessed or processed by keeping it on-prem or in data centers while leveraging scalable compute in the cloud and vice versa.

Whether users are doing geological surveys in the middle of the ocean and are bound by satellite links, applying artificial intelligence algorithms across geographically dispersed data sets, or accelerating production with deploying applications in the cloud, the Vcinity Data Access Platform (VDAP) ensures that data is accessible and actionable in real-time while performance to the application is sustained at LAN speeds.

VMblog:  Give us the short description of VDAP.  What do you say to your customers in under 50 words?

Greyzdorf:  Vcinity Data Access Platform (VDAP) enables applications and data to be separated by long distances and high latency and still comply with ATO (Access Time Objective)  even if it is real-time. Deploying VDAP on the WAN enables applications to process data without the intermittent effects of latency.

VMblog:  Since you mentioned a couple of use cases, and many other examples come to mind, give me one specific use case that you encountered recently.

Greyzdorf:  I will give you a "glamorous" - and very real - one: movie making! Content creation is no longer bound by geography, yet in order to manage and maintain it, the common practice has been to move it. Content is moved because it is complicated to track it in multiple locations. It's simple to understand why the time required to move data to a post facility for initial processing could cause delays to the production schedule; having compute on location adds costs to the overall project budget. After initial processing, content had to be moved to a post production facility; creating copies for use of cloud resources exposed content to security risks. Moving data off-set using data migration over a WAN became challenging as the size of data outpaced the available bandwidth. Data would, instead, be compressed, written to disk drives, and shipped to the post facility. Leveraging cloud or compute elsewhere would require content to be copied, which added time, costs, and risks.

The amount of data generated depends on the duration of the clip, frame rate, resolution, and codec used. As an example, a two-hour long Sony 16-bit Raw 4K-Academy clip shot at 23.98 fps could generate 2TB of data. On a public 1Gb link with 60ms latency, transfer rates over TCP/IP would be ~45GB/hour. This equates to more than 44 hours to move 2 TB of data. The project schedule has to account for these time lags, making their duration longer than necessary.

Vcinity addresses this challenge by enabling a federated namespace across multiple sites without moving data. Vcinity's technology creates a LAN-like connection between multiple sites, allowing a file system to stretch over WAN without performance degradation. Now, regardless of where content is in the world, users and applications can see and access it as though it was local to them.

VMblog:  You mentioned AI/ML, can you give an example of how VDAP adds value to AI/ML workflows?

Greyzdorf:  IoT devices such as cameras and sensors are expected to be in the 30 billion range by 2025. These typically are deployed at the edge, places such as ships, manufacturing facilities, mines, airports, hospitals, and cars. Gartner predicts that 75% of all data created by enterprises will be at the edge. Of course this data must be processed and analyzed within the time frame of outcome relevance. To that end, it is critical to access data within defined time objectives. VDAP accelerates access to data so that analysis can be performed in real-time. Data can be created anywhere in the world and with VDAP an application can access all the data, across multiple locations, over terrestrial, cellular, or satellite networks.

VMblog:  Why is it not possible to operate on data over high latency WAN?  The bandwidth capacity has increased and we have the compute resources to push data so it fills the pipe, but you are saying it is not enough?

Greyzdorf:  TCP as a protocol was originally designed as a LAN protocol. It has all the features to deliver a lossless connection and manage the flows. TCP wasn't designed to traverse over long distances. Many of the features that make it so ubiquitous in the datacenter are the same that create inefficiencies over WAN. The further data has to travel, the worse performance gets. It is easy to see the decrease in throughput at 20ms of latency. On a network with over 60ms latency, TCP may deliver only 10% of available bandwidth. Most applications will time out. That is why data is often moved, copied, or cached near compute/application instead of being accessed and processed in place. Vicinity brings all the capabilities, such as lossless connection and flow management, as well as security, but it can sustain the connection at 95% bandwidth so the application thinks the compute is on a LAN.

VMblog:  Do applications, networks, or storage have to be modified in order to use VDAP?

Greyzdorf:  Vicinity is inserted transparently. There are no modifications required to applications, network, storage, cloud or any modifications or manipulations to data such as compression or deduplication.

VMblog:  How secure is the Vcinity's connection?

Greyzdorf:  Vicinity supports AES256 encryption at the packet level.

VMblog:  What is your partner/channel strategy?

Greyzdorf:  Vicinity believes that it needs technology partners, solution partners, and reseller partners to be successful. We are in the process of defining our reseller partner program. In the meantime, we are developing technology and solution partnerships to bring greater value to our present and future customers.

VMblog:  And how many patents do you have?

Greyzdorf:  People often ask, how do you do what you do? The answer is we take a standard protocol, RDMS (RoCE and IB) and add our years of development in the form of 32 patents that have been granted and an additional one pending. What we do is not easy, but hopefully we make it seem like it is.

VMblog:  Finally, what's next for Vcinity?

Greyzdorf:  As many startups will say, the answer is definitely growing our customer base. We are also in the process of expanding our channel and working with specialized resellers in verticals such as telecommunications, media and entertainment, government, education, healthcare, energy, and insurance. Our solution offers value across many industries; the key use cases we are focused on now are data analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning, post-production workflows, and IoT edge-computing. We want to see customers take advantage of the new era of a Connected Enterprise where network inefficiencies (satellite, 5G, IP, Private) are no longer a barrier to getting results in line with business' Access Time Objective.


Noemi Greyzdorf is the VP of marketing at Vcinity. Her previous roles as director of product marketing at Quantum and VP, strategy and alliances at Cambridge Computer System gave her access to innovative companies and a rich network across the technology industry. As research manager, Storage, at IDC, Noemi's research focused on the emerging storage architectures.

Published Thursday, May 27, 2021 7:32 AM by David Marshall
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