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Kazeon upgrades data classification software

Looking to jumpstart a dormant data classification market, Kazeon upgrades its Information Server, adding federated search and a remote office edition, while improving scalability.

Although the data classification market is more bust than boom so far, Kazeon Inc. is sticking to its guns by updating its Information Server software with new support for Microsoft Exchange, federated search and improved scalability.

Kazeon also split its Information Server (IS) into two versions: Data Center Edition and Remote Office Edition. Kazeon claims Data Center Edition will search files faster than previous versions -- the result of "a lot of tuning," according to Steve d'Alencon, Kazeon vice president of product marketing.

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d'Alencon declined to give more details about what boosted performance, but during an Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) lab test, the IS1200 appliance showed a sustained 1,500 files searched per second for metadata and 700 files per second with search indexing. ESG also reported a "deep crawl" performance of 47 MBps when scanning for content, and that a single appliance was able to search, classify and scan 100 million documents and 10 TB of unstructured data.

d'Alencon refused to give performance numbers of previous versions of IS, saying it had never been certified by a third-party lab.

d'Alencon said he expects splitting the product into two versions will make it easier to deploy. The Data Center Edition is still available on an appliance and also as a software-only version. The Remote Office Edition is available as a VMware virtual machine.

Users can consolidate searches

Kazeon has also added a separately licensed Information Center console that lets users consolidate searches. They can search across content repositories; content types, such as email and unstructured files; virtual and physical machines; and remote offices and the main data center. Information Center is also used for centralized management of Information Servers. The license has a list price of $100,000.

Asked why federated search isn't part of the base product, d'Alencon responded, "I don't know any enterprise software company that sells a management console like this for free. It contains significant advanced functions that not all customers will require."

According to ESG analyst Brian Babineau, Kazeon should support more applications the way it's supporting Exchange. "Lotus is the first one that comes to mind," he said. "And they're doing Exchange, so SQL server would be the next logical step."

Data classification market still rocky

Products in the data classification market space have yet to find wide acceptance. EMC Corp.'s InfoScape has been reclassified as a data security tool and Scentric Inc. has gone out of business, sending its Destiny software to an early demise. Abrevity Inc. recently admitted its previous product was not up to snuff in its scalability or performance when it rolled out an upgrade in September, and StoredIQ Inc. hasn't gotten far off the ground after a 2004 reorganization.

According to d'Alencon, there have been "some hiccups" in the market for data classification, as well as storage in general this year, though he said Kazeon is counting on "the convergence of information management and e-discovery" to push demand for its product.

"It's just starting to happen," d'Alencon said. "There isn't a lot of deployment [of e-discovery products] yet, but there have been a lot of inquiries. You're just seeing the front end of the demand over the next 18 months." Kazeon has announced one user of the new software, DVR supplier TiVo Inc., but the customer was not available for an interview by press time.

Babineau said Kazeon will have a few differentiators with this latest product release to help it along. It offers flexibility in Exchange journaling (users can choose whether or not Kazeon's software connects directly into the Exchange server to pick out data for search or is the recipient of a full journal) and incorporates standards, such as the Luhn algorithm, for proactively identifying data types.

Babineau also pointed out that scalability issues aren't going to go away for any customers given the volume of information being created and retained on a regular basis. "Even after making this announcement, tomorrow Kazeon will wake up and indexing larger amounts of data will be near the top of their product development priority list," he said. "They have to constantly work to stay ahead of that curve."

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