Gartner Symposium ITXpo: Driving Digital Business

Next week the Gartner Symposium ITXpo kicks off in Barcelona, with the theme of ‘driving digital business’.

Mimecast will be joining a host of technology leaders at the event to share our perspective on how IT is being redefined in the era of cloud services, corporate memory, and advanced threats.

It’s no wonder that with this backdrop the ITxpo series is becoming so popular. A new chapter is emerging for CIOs. In some cases the role is merging with CSOs to create a new function in the business. There are some big questions which should be asked to inform how or even if this integration will take place, which we covered in part on this blog last month but will be bought into sharp focus at high level events like this:

- Security governance:how will organizations cope with the increased rigour and business-as-usual buy-in for IT projects from the rest of the business.

- Mobile Device Management: how do IT teams control the risk profile of mobile device seamlessly and with scale?

- Cost: how can CIOs empower the business to maintain principles of data security?

- Data Migration: how SaaS vendors like Mimecast can help you plan the migration of your information archive to the cloud.

If you’d like a meeting and/or schedule a demo you can of course drop in to see us at Stand S10…we’d be delighted to chat and understand your business objectives in more depth and how Mimecast can help you achieve these.


Mimecast Gains Second Magic Quadrant Position

You may have heard last week that we had some good news; we’ve gained a second Gartner Magic Quadrant position this year – our enterprise archiving solution has just been positioned in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Information Archiving. Together with our recent inclusion in the Magic Quadrant for Secure Email Gateways, this is further affirmation of our standing as a leading provider of enterprise email management solutions, and a great way to round off 2012.

Gartner’s analysts took a very close look at the tools we give our customers to manage their information stores and saw our determination to bring innovation and new products to the Information Archiving space. Earlier this year we beefed up our cloud based Information Archiving services, adding some very useful new capabilities for your business and your users: We introduced the Mimecast File Archive which allows you to archive file data from network shares, home drives, SharePoint, Box and Dropbox.

 We also launched a new iPad app called Mimefiles, and a much talked about integration between Microsoft SharePoint and the Mimecast cloud archive. Importantly we have given your end users tools to access their personal archive from their chosen email client or mobile device (iPhone, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, Android, empowering their productivity, like no other Cloud Archive.

Mimecast’s vision for the enterprise archive is that it can do so much more than just store data. Mimecast has a vision for an Interactive Archive, where your cloud archive becomes not only a highly available and secure repository of all enterprise data, but it also becomes an incredibly useful source of information, allowing the business and its users to drive value from the data therein. EDiscovery, security, business intelligence and productivity all become vital components of the day to day use of your enterprise archived data.

We are thrilled Gartner have recognized our industry leading technology, and specifically mention the delight we bring to our customers and their users.


Mimecast's Visionary Secure Email Gateway

Mimecast Email Security

Mimecast has just been positioned in the Visionaries Quadrant of the “Magic Quadrant” for Secure Email Gateways. Gartner release this report annually to evaluate the leading providers in the Secure Email Gateway Market. Mimecast has been placed in the Visionaries quadrant as a validation of our determination to bring innovation and progress to the Secure Email Gateway market. At Mimecast we recognise there is much more value and ability built into the Secure Email Gateway than is currently offered, we recognise that the Secure Email Gateway could do a whole lot more than anti-spam and anti-virus.

Secure Email Gateways have been an essential part of an email management infrastructure since the mid-nineties. Email servers used to plug straight into the Internet without any threat of malicious or meat related email (Spam, Ham or Bacn, if you didn’t get that). To be fair email servers “dialled-up” to the Internet and did their scheduled send and receive of queued email over a normal telephone line. Then we added ISDN, ADSL, Leased Lines, Broadband, and today the types of always-on connection that mean our email servers have almost become instantaneous forms of essential communication.

Coinciding with the rise in demand for email has been a simultaneous boom in the market for selling things by email too. Our email administrators had to quickly add gateways that “filter out” this junk and rubbish as the chorus of complaints from end-users grew louder.

Today, Secure Email Gateways are a must-have part of network security methodology, we can’t live without them – unless of course you buy your shares, watches, herbal enhancements and little blue pills on the Internet; if that is the case, our spam is your news.

Some would have us believe that the Secure Email Gateway has become a commoditised part of the network. I would argue this commoditisation is only true if you choose to spend your IT budget with a vendor who is not offering any innovation, or product vision in return. You get what you pay for, and there are quite a few vendors offering well marketed, but technically-limited, budget solutions that will protect you, but nothing more.

As email evolves and adapts to the more collaborative work-flows emerging in businesses today, the email gateways will play in important role in controlling and securing the corporate intellectual property embedded within email. End users are already demanding increased flexibility and control of their conversations and relationships on a per-message basis, and from directly within their inbox. They yearn for the tools to solve the pain caused by their budget, unintelligent, email gateway.

Mimecast Email Security is designed to combine this increased flexibility with industry-leading security, delivering industry-first capabilities directly to the end-users, as well as centralized controls for the IT department to. Mimecast Email Security brings the value of the Secure Email Gateway back and delivers a vision of the future that enables email use in your business.

The latest version of Mimecast Email Security will be available this Autumn. The Gartner Magic Quadrant for Secure Email Gateways, 2012, is available on our website.




Velocity: How fast is your Exchange Server Store growing?

Blurred vehicle lights and cityscapeThis week Mimecast has been at the Gartner Data Center Conference 2011, in Las Vegas, with a packed agenda full of insightful discussions and presentations. As expected the Cloud was a strong trend throughout the week, but I couldn’t help but notice that another trend has emerged since the last summit; that of Big Data, a topic this blog has written about many times before.

One particularly compelling presentation by Gartner Research VPs, Merv Adrian and Sheila Childs delved into Big Data. The packed session was standing room only, so this is obviously a hot topic for people looking for insight to help them solve their own unique problems.

Adrian and Childs identified a shortcoming in the way business and technology leaders talk about big data, in that the emphasis is often placed on volume. They rightly pointed out that

“The most difficult information management issues emerge from the simultaneous and persistent interaction of extreme volume, variety of data formats, velocity of record creation and variable latencies, and the complexity of individual data types within formats.”

As we’re concentrating on volume of data, we’re often forgetting about the velocity, variety and complexity of the data too.

Adrian and Childs went on to quantify velocity, which is when I started relating it to email data and Exchange Stores.

Velocity involves streams of data, structured record creation and availability for access and delivery. Velocity means both how fast data is being produced, and how fast the data must be processed to meet demand.

The most important factor when it comes to thinking about Big Data in relation to Microsoft Exchange Server, in my opinion, is velocity. Of course most Exchange databases won’t have the sort of big data that most data center managers have to worry about, but to those of us who manage Exchange Servers, I’ll bet the data therein is one of the largest repositories of data in your environment. To coin a phrase of our Chief Scientist, you have essentially got a Nano-Google’s worth of data, it’s important to you, but nothing that hasn’t been dealt with before, but trying telling that to the Exchange administrator when they’re planning to migrate the stores from one version of Exchange to another.

So what is the Velocity of your Exchange Server? If Velocity is the stream of data, record creation and availability for access and delivery, I’m sure there must be a quadratic equation that will actually give us a figure for this. But I was thinking more about it in terms of every day reality, especially if that reality means an upgrade or migration.

The unique big data complexity that exists within each Exchange environment is compounded by the velocity of the email environment that surrounds it. The data will continue to grow at a rate that can only be determined by a number of local factors; corporate culture, use of email, access to email, integration of email into other systems. Again, I’m sure there is a quantitative way to work out what this velocity is.

When you’re thinking of doing something with your nano-Google Exchange store I would suggest that getting a grip on the velocity of Exchange is the first step. I doubt very much that you can do anything to throttle this velocity, not without upsetting your users at least. So I’m drawn to the phrase “Just Enough on Site” which is one we use at Mimecast, to describe an Exchange environment that has been given the benefit of Cloud Augmentation to take the Big Data load off said server, before, during and after a tricky migration.

I would argue that the amount of ‘online’ data needed in an Exchange Server is pretty minimal, probably about a month or two. The rest doesn’t need to be offline, but keeping it near-line is way more productive. Remember velocity is also about how fast the data must be processed to meet demand. Surely putting the less accessed and older data near-line in the cloud means your Exchange can concentrate on the on-line velocity of the real time data?