Going Broader and Deeper: Isilon InsightIQ 4.1

Patrick Lynch

Consultant Product Manager at EMC Isilon

Latest posts by Patrick Lynch (see all)

Since it was first released, InsightIQ has been used by a majority of our customers as a valuable tool to understand what is going on in their Isilon environment.  A year ago, InsightIQ was made a zero-cost offering resulting in more customers learning how this solution can be useful to them, both within the realms of storage and IT management as well as in sharing InsightIQ with others within the organization. With an over 80% adoption rate, customers reduce storage management costs from the reporting and insight delivered by InsightIQ.

As I stated in my blog for the release of InsightIQ 4.0 in February, InsightIQ plays a critical role in providing access to information about who’s doing what in an Isilon environment.  This month we are excited to release our latest version, InsightIQ4.1 with key enhancements in making the solution more easily accessible to users within your organization while also introducing a new report that sheds even more light on actions within your Isilon environment.

Enabling users to answer their own questions!

InsightIQ 4.1 makes it easier for users to run their own reports!  We added integrated support for LDAP authentication, which makes it easier to provide access to InsightIQ to user groups within your LDAP server.  LDAP groups and sub-groups can be configured to have read-only or administrator roles.  Providing easier access to a broader set of users means storage and IT admins can save time answering user questions that they can find for themselves.



Learn which workloads need updated settings!

The new performance report in InsightIQ 4.1 is one that shows key metrics of performance consumed by the OneFS Jobs and Services.  Analyzing the results of this report, and especially correlating with other performance reports in InsightIQ, can help shed light on which jobs may benefit from a change to their settings or priorities.  This can lead to overall performance optimization and balanced resource consumption in the cluster.  In this first screenshot, a summary table is shown listing the Jobs and Services that generated the most Disk Writes in the past hour (the time range for the report can be configured to whatever you require).



The flexible time series charts enable you to identify trends or patterns in resource consumption. The new report also includes time series charts for each performance metric, with the powerful breakout and filtering capabilities available in all InsightIQ reports. This is valuable in helping decide what scheduling or setting needs to be adjusted to better manage resource consumption.




Get Started Now! 

Take advantage of the new InsightIQ 4.1 today and start enjoying the benefits of these latest improvements.

Your Data Lake Is More Powerful and Easier to Operate with New Dell EMC Isilon Products

Karthik Ramamurthy

Director Product Management
Isilon Storage Division at Dell EMC

Earlier this year Dell EMC released a suite of Isilon products designed to enable your company’s data lake journey. Together IsilonSD Edge, Isilon OneFS 8.0, and Isilon CloudPools transformed the way your organization stores and uses data by harnessing the power of the data lake. Today we are pleased to announce all three of these products have been updated and further enhanced to make your data lake even more powerful and easier to operate from edge to core to cloud.

Starting with the release of OneFS 8.0.1

OneFS 8.0.1 builds on the powerful platform provided by OneFS 8.0 released in February 2016. The intent of this newest release is to provide features important to unique customer datacenter workflows, enhance usability and manageability of OneFS clusters. In addition, OneFS 8.0.1 is the first release that takes full advantage of the non-disruptive upgrade and rollback framework introduced in OneFS 8.0.

Let’s review some of the most compelling features of this software release.

Improved Management, Monitoring, Security and Performance for Hadoop on Isilon

Expanding on the Data Lake, one of the focus areas of this new release was increasing the scope and usefulness of our integration with leading Hadoop management tools. OneFS 8.0.1 delivers support for and integration with Apache Ambari 2.4 and Ranger. A single management point now allows Ambari operators to seamlessly manage and monitor Hadoop clusters with OneFS as the HDFS storage layer. Ranger is an important security management tool for Hadoop.  These Ambari and Ranger integration features benefit all customers using Hortonworks and ODP-I compliant Hadoop distributions with OneFS.

Additionally OneFS 8.0.1 adds new features including Kerberos encryption to secure and encrypt data between HDFS clients and OneFS. In addition, Datanode load balancing avoids overloading nodes and increases cluster resilience. OneFS 8.0.1 also supports the following HFDS distributions: Hortonworks HDP 2.5, Cloudera CDH 5.8.0, and IBM Open Platform (IOP) 4.1.

Introducing Scale-Out NAS with SEC Compliance and Asynchronous Replication for Disaster Recovery

With OneFS 8.0.1, Isilon becomes the first and only Scale-Out NAS vendor that offers SEC-17a4 compliance via SmartLock Compliance Mode combined with the asynchronous replication to secondary or standby clusters via SyncIQ. This powerful combination means companies that must comply with SEC-17a4 are no longer caught in a choice between compliance and data recovery – with OneFS 8.0.1 they have both!

Storage Efficiency Designed for the Healthcare Diagnostic Imaging Needs

For many years PACS (Picture Archiving and Communication System) applications diagnostic imaging data was stored in large “container” files for maximum storage efficiency. In recent years, the way referring physicians’ access individual diagnostic images changed and, as a result, the methods used to store diagnostic imaging files had to change as well. OneFS 8.0.1 has a new storage efficiency feature specifically designed for the Healthcare PACS archive market to provide significantly improved storage efficiency for diagnostic imaging files.  Isilon customers can expect to see storage efficiency similar to OneFS’s large file storage efficiency for diagnostic imaging files when using this feature.   you leverage Isilon to store your PACS application data you will want to talk with your sales representative and learn more about this new feature.

Upgrade with Confidence

OneFS 8.0, released in February 2016, provided the framework for non-disruptive upgrades for all supported upgrades going forward and the addition of release rollback. OneFS 8.0.1 is the first OneFS release that you will be able to test and validate and, if needed, rollback to the previously installed 8.0.x release. This means that you can non-disruptively upgrade to 8.0.1, without impacting users or applications! You will be able to upgrade sets of nodes or the entire cluster for your testing and validation and then, once complete, you decide to commit the upgrade or rollback to the prior release. Once committed to OneFS 8.0.1, future upgrades will be even easier and more transparent with the ability to view an estimate of how long an upgrade will take to complete and transparency of the upgrade process. The WebUI was enhanced to make upgrade management even easier than before.

Manage Performance Resources like Never Before

Even more exciting is the new Performance Resource Management framework introduced in OneFS 8.0.1. This framework is the start of a revolutionary scale-out NAS performance management system. In OneFS 8.0.1 you will be able to obtain and view statistics on the performance resources (CPU, operations, data read, data written, etc.) for OneFS jobs and services. This will allow you to identify quickly if a particular job or service may be the cause of performance issues. These statistics are available via the CLI, Platform API and can be visualized with InsightIQ 4.1. In future releases these capabilities will be expanded to clients, IP addresses, users, protocols and !

These are just some of the new features OneFS 8.0.1 has to offer. OneFS 8.0.1 improves on our support for MAC OS clients, SMB, audit, NDMP and data migrations, to name a few other areas.  The white paper, Technical Overview of New and Improved Features of EMC Isilon OneFS 8.0., provides additional details on these and other new and improved features in OneFS 8.0.1

Isilon SD Edge Management Server version 1.0.1

This July EMC released a new version of IsilonSD Edge Management Server. Version 1.0.1 provides support for VMware ESX 6.0 in addition to previously supported ESX versions. This management server also enables monitoring of the IsilonSD Edge Clusters via EMC’s Secure Remote Support (ESRS) server and tools.

Isilon CloudPools Just Got Easier to Manage

OneFS 8.0.1 provides improved flexibility for CloudPools deployments in the enterprise with the introduction of proxy support. This allows administrators to specify one or more proxy servers between the Isilon cluster and your cloud provider of .

The Data Lake Journey is Just Beginning!

OneFS 8.0.1 is an important step on the data lake journey; however, you can rest assured we are not stopping here! Look forward to amazing new hardware and software features in coming releases as we build on the Performance Resource Management Framework, provide more workload specific enhancements to address our customers’ needs and deliver new levels of supportability, serviceability, scale and performance.   Don’t wait, upgrade .  Click here to download OneFS 8.0.1.

Announcing Isilon OneFS 8.0.1

David Noy

VP Product Management, Emerging Technologies Division at EMC

It’s really been an exhilarating last couple of months leading up to the recent historical merger between Dell and EMC! We just completed our first Dell EMC World and announced Isilon All-Flash last week.  While all that was in progress, the Isilon team was heads-down focused on the next update to the industry leading Scale-Out NAS OneFS operating system.

Today, we’re announcing the new OneFS 8.0.1 release with a strong focus on strengthening the Data Lake with features supporting the horizontals and vertical markets we serve. For the horizontal markets, we’ve added new and improved capabilities around Hadoop big data analytics, Isilon CloudPools, and IsilonSD Edge. For the vertical industries we support, we’ve focused on enhancing the needs of the Healthcare and Financial markets.

Customers continue to gain more value from their data with analytics.  Hadoop based solutions have always been a pillar for Isilon customers because of native support for HDFS protocol in the OneFS operating system. In OneFS 8.0.1, we’ve added support for Apache Ambari to proactively monitor key performance metrics and alerts which enables enterprise customers to have a single point for management of the entire Hadoop cluster. In addition, from a security perspective, not only have we integrated with Apache Ranger to deliver seamless authorization and access control, but we’ve also added support for end-to-end data in-flight encryption between Isilon nodes and the HDFS client.

Many of the Isilon enterprise customers continue to use OneFS because of its simplicity and ease of management at scale. We’ve added many new features for enterprises like CloudPools proxy support to increase security, reduce risk, and simplify management. For IsilonSD Edge software defined storage, we’ve added support for VMware ESX 6.0 and have seamlessly integrated with EMC Remote Support (ESRS) for remote monitoring, issue resolution and troubleshooting.

Other enterprise capabilities include seamless non-disruptive upgrades from OneFS 8.0, upgrade rollback support, a 5X improvement in audit performance and a completely re-written framework for performance resource management,  reporting and data insights.

Isilon deployments continue to add value for customers across verticals like Media & Entertainment, Healthcare, Life Sciences, EDA and others. In this release we have strengthened our solutions for the Healthcare and Finance verticals.  For Healthcare PACS workloads, we’ve added capabilities in OneFS 8.0.1 that increases the efficiency, optimizes the storage and significantly improves the storage utilization for PACS archive workloads. For the Financial industry, we’ve added seamless integration for compliance data with business continuity features by integrating SmartLock compliance mode with SyncIQ replication for push button failover and failback.

OneFS 8.0.1 – the first major upgrade to the OneFS 8.0 code base – it contains a number of features that many enterprises were waiting for. If you are looking to upgrade to the OneFS 8.0 code base because you generally want to wait for a subsequent “dot release”, today is the day, your wait is over!

Bullseye: NCC Media Helps Advertisers Score a Direct Hit with Their Audiences

Can you recall the last commercial you watched? If you’re having a hard time remembering, don’t beat yourself up. Nowadays, it’s all too easy for us to fast forward, block or avoid ads entirely. In order to watch content on one of our many devices, advertising is no longer a necessary preccartoon-tv-convertedursor to enjoying our favorite shows. While people may be consuming more media in more places than we’ve ever seen, it’s more challenging than ever for advertisers to reach their target audiences. The rise of media fragmentation and ad-blocking technology has exponentially increased the cost of reaching the same number of people it did years ago.

As a result, advertisers are under pressure to accurately allocate spending across TV and digital media and to ensure those precious ad dollars being spent are reaching the right people. Gone are the days when a media buyer’s gut instinct determined which block of airtime to purchase on what channel, replaced instead with advanced analytics.

By aggregating hundreds of terabytes of data from sources like Nielsen ratings, Scarborough local market data and even voting and census data, companies such as NCC Media are able to provide targeted strategies for major retailers, nonprofits and political campaigns. In one of the most contentious election years to date, AdAge reported data and analytics are heavily influencing how political advertisers are purchasing cable TV spots. According to Tim Kay, director of political strategy at NCC, “Media buyers…are basing TV decisions on information such as whether a program’s audience is more likely to vote or be registered gun owners.”

In order for NCC to identify its customers targets more quickly (for example, matching data about cable audiences to voter information and zip codes targets more quickly), NCC built an enterprise data lake with EMC Isilon’s scale-out storage with Hortonworks Data Platform, allowing it to streamline data aggregation and analytics.

To learn more about how Isilon has helped NCC eliminate time-consuming overnight data importation processes and tackle growing data aggregation requirements, check out the video below or read the NCC Media Case Study.


Big Data Analysis for the Greater Good: Dell EMC & the 100,000 Genome Project

Wolfgang Mertz

CTO of Healthcare, Life Sciences and High performance Computing

It might seem far-reaching to say that big data analysis can fundamentally impact patient outcomes around cancer and other illnesses, and that it has the power to ultimately transform health services and indeed society at large, but that’s the precise goal behind the 100,000 Genome Project from Genomics England.

DNA backgroundFor background, Genomics England is a wholly-owned company of the Department of Health, set up to deliver the 100,000 Genomes Project. This exciting endeavor will sequence and collect 100,000 whole genomes from 70,000 NHS patients and their families (with their full consent), focusing on patients with rare diseases as well as those with common cancers.

The program is designed to create a lasting legacy for patients as well as the NHS and the broader UK economy, while encouraging innovation in the UK’s bioscience sector. The genetic sequences will be anonymized and shared with approved academic researchers to help develop new treatments and diagnostic testing methods targeted at the genetic characteristics of individual patients.

Dell EMC provides the platform for large-scale analytics in a hybrid cloud model for Genomics England, which leverages our VCE vScale, with EMC Isilon and EMC XtremIO solutions. The Project has been using EMC storage for its genomic sequence library, and now it will be leveraging an Isilon data lake to securely store data during the sequencing process. Backup services are provided by EMC’s Data Domain and EMC Networker.

The Genomics England IT environment uses both on-prem servers and IaaS provided by cloud service providers on G-Cloud. According to an article from Government Computing, “one of Genomics England’s key legacies is expected to be an ecosystem of cloud service providers providing low cost, elastic compute on demand through G-Cloud, bringing the benefits of scale to smaller research groups.”

There are two main considerations from an IT perspective around genome and DNA sequencing projects such as those being done by Genomics England and others: data management and speed. Vast amounts of research data have to be stored and retrieved, and this large-scale biologic data has to be processed quickly in order to gain meaningful insights.

Scale is another key factor. Sequencing and storing genomic information digitally is a data-intensive endeavor, to say the least. Just sequencing a single genome creates hundreds of gigabytes and the Project has sequenced over 13,000 genomes to date, which is expected to generate ten times more data over the next two years. The data lake being used by Genomics England allows 17 petabytes of data to be stored and made available for multi-protocol analytics (including Hadoop).

For perspective, 1 PB is a quadrillion bytes – think of that as 20 million four-drawer filing cabinets filled with text. Or, considering the Milky Way has roughly two hundred billion stars in its galaxy, if you count each single star as a single byte – it would take 5,000 Milky Way galaxies to reach 1PB of data. It’s staggering.

The potential of being able to contribute to eradicating disease and identify exciting new treatments is truly awe inspiring.  And considering the immense scale of the data involved – 5,000 galaxies! – provides new context around reaching for the stars.



IBC 2016: Takeaways from the Year’s Biggest Broadcast Event

Tom "TV" Burns

CTO, Media & Entertainment at EMC


Ah, Amsterdam…famed for its tulip fields, wooden clogs, bicycle rides through the city, and an annual industry gathering that unites more than 55,000 media and entertainment professionals to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the world of broadcasting.

The International Broadcasting Convention (IBC) is always a great opportunity to connect with our global customers, partners and hear about the major developments taking place in media & entertainment today.

This was my 4th time attending IBC and, as at previous conferences, there was no shortage of exciting product announcements, customer and partnership wins, and spirited discussions about what’s ahead for us in the coming year(s). Here’s a high-level snapshot of the major trends I saw at IBC this year:


Enterprise IT Shaping M&E’s Migration to IP

We continue to see progress in the migration to all IP workflows, and this evolution is taking shape with lessons from enterprise IT. In an industry where flexibility and agility are key, proprietary media hardware will quickly become a roadblock to the next generation of simplicity.

I had the opportunity to visit the IBC IP Interoperability Zone, which featured more than 30 diverse demos of verified technical interoperability over IP. The new initiative was developed by the Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS) and the International Association of Broadcasting Manufacturers (IABM), with a shared vision (as expressed by Peter White, IABM CEO in an article from SVG) to “remove the roadblock that uncertainty over standards and interoperability has put in the way of end-users’ decisions to transition to the many potential operating and cost benefits of IP technology in the broadcast production chain.”

Potential, not pixels, is what matters

I think the next significant growth area in the M&E space will be around data analytics, particularly in light of how “TV” as we know it has evolved. Further, machine learning (AKA AI or deep learning), is becoming increasingly sophisticated particularly around the areas of video search.

Look at the ways that televisions themselves at been evolving. Even as recently as a few years ago, when it came to buying a TV (or any ”entertainment viewing device,” for that matter), what mattered most was the picture quality. Screens were still relatively large and bulky in size and resolution was often the primary consideration for consumers. Those buying factors have changed, to where we think of TV (again, “entertainment viewing devices”) more as a sophisticated media hub than just a humble television. Long gone are the days of “appointment viewing,” where viewers had a specific day and time to watch a program before it was gone forever. Today the conversation is around USB ports, storage, networking, wireless connectivity and on-demand viewing, just for starters.

In fact, I’d like to designate NHK for “T.V. Burns Top Pick for Best Demo at IBC” for their awe-inspiring 130″ 8K display screen f(made up of 4x4K OLED panels) that was just 2mm thick, including bezel! Talk about taking your next weekend movie night to the next level!

Virtual Reality (VR) Closer to Becoming Actual Reality

VR was everywhere at IBC, with myriad demos, launches and partnerships being announced that will ultimately bring us all one step closer to experiencing true VR. The fact is that the way that consumers experience programming is fast becoming richer and more lifelike than ever. It’s not far-off to say that soon we’ll no longer “watch” TV but rather “experience” it through full video and audio immersion with a 360 view of our content.

Notably at IBC, Kaltura launched the VR Alliance, in conjunction with founding partners Inception, 24i Media, Encompass and Harmonic. The “Future Zone” on the exhibit floor was incredibly popular, with attendees being able to interact with realistic avatars via LiveLike, and an interactive cooking show from BBC R&D (Cook-Along Kitchen Experience, or CAKE) that adjusts the content in real-time to align with the viewer’s cooking.

The World Gets Smaller

Consolidation and partnership were definitely in the air at IBC, with a slew of acquisition announcements coming out around the event. Rovi closed its $1.1B acquisition of TiVo; Blackmagic Design bought both Fairlight and Ultimatte; Ross Video announced the acquisition of Abekas, Inc.; and Telestream announced the acquisition of UK-based Quality Control (QC) technology specialist, Vidcheck. In partnership news, Ericsson and Google joined forces to combine Ericsson’s MediaFirst platform into Google’s Android TV ecosystem.

If you were at IBC – or if you were monitoring developments from home – what were your favorite announcements and developments? Let us know what you think the next year will bring for the M&E space after this year’s event.

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