Egnyte announced a couple of upgrades to their hybrid storage solution today including intelligent file distribution, which can determine the best place to put a file based on usage and IT policies
They also announced a new file auditing feature that lets IT track a file wherever it goes, a feature that puts it on par with many of its competitors.
Egnyte is part of the popular enterprise file sync and share market, which includes Box, Syncplicity, Dropbox and a host of others. Egnyte has always tried to differentiate itself from the pack by forgoing an all-cloud solution, and offering a hybrid approach, which lets customers store files on-premises or in the cloud.
It has also formed partnerships with a variety of storage vendors such as Amazon S3 and Google Cloud, rather than developing its own cloud storage options, as others in this space have done.
That’s great as far as it goes, but companies choosing a hybrid approach have to be able to understand where their files are, and today’s announcement provides them with a couple of ways to do that.
First of all, the software can intelligently decide where to put files based on popularity. If a file is used frequently, Egnyte will move it to the fastest available service, and based on policies defined by administrators, can make it available in the cloud or not, depending on the conditions. If it hasn’t been used in some time, it could be moved to the cheapest archival storage automatically.
Company CEO Vineet Jain made clear, however, that they don’t rigidly set these conditions. The software gives the administrators complete control and they can move a file or not, as they see fit. The level of automation is entirely up to the customer, he explained.
Jain says as a company, they have been advocating this notion of a hybrid approach from the beginning, and he got some ridicule for it early on, but the market has finally caught up with his vision, and many companies are looking at a hybrid on-premises and cloud approach to storage (and software and infrastructure too).
This is especially true for more mature companies with legacy hardware and software. They can’t simply rip and replace, no matter how attractive the cloud may be to them, especially as the workforce gets more mobile and workers need access to files wherever they go.
Egnyte has chosen a middle ground where companies can use a combination of solutions and vendors, and they act as the glue between all of them, offering the best place to put a file while giving administrators a full view of everywhere it’s been. As files move back and forth between the different storage locations, and get used across mobile devices, it’s especially important for administrators to be able to follow that trail if need be.
Egnyte is walking a fine line here in a crowded field. It’s trying to make itself as friendly as possible to both IT and end users and trying to find that perfect balance between the two. It’s not an easy place to live, but as Jain explains, his company sees this as the most sustainable approach.
Egnyte was founded in 2007 and has raised 62.5M over five rounds. The last raise was $29.5M Series D in December, 2013.