Cloudtenna: We can find the file in any pile

 Cloudtenna’s multi-cloud and on-premises file search service is ready to use.

The Bay Area company is an early stage-ish startup, founded in 2013 and the recipient of $4 million in seed funding. Cloudtenna’s neatly encapsulates its Big Idea in its tagline: “Bringing Order to File Chaos”.  It says file search is difficult, uncertain and expensive because files are spread across so many repositories. These can include on-premises, in filers and apps, and in the public cloud.

Google-type searches are not good enough because different repositories have different access permissions, according to Cloudtenna. Also individual repository search means logging into each one and using its interface. 

In response, Cloudtenna has built a multi-repository file search application, called DirectSearch, that works with ACLs (Access Control Lists).

This is available at prices starting at $10/user/mo. Users who sign-up before December 1 get three months free. Pricing for OEMs is available on request.

This search facility looks into local file servers and also Dropbox, Box, Microsoft OneDrive, Google Drive, Outlook, Gmail, Slack, Atlassian JIRA and Confluence, using connectors.

Aaron Ganek, Cloudtenna CEO, said file search infrastructure “has to be smart enough [to] reflect accurate file permissions and be smart enough to derive context to boost search results. It has to do all this in a fraction of second – anything longer and the user thinks search is broken. And it can’t cost an arm-and-a-leg.”

Access all areas

Cloudtenna claims file search needs to be personalised and reflect ACLs. This has been costly and hard to scale, according to the company. But it says it has worked out how to do this.

Users can find files by name, sender, date, file type, keyword, content, and other attributes regardless of where they are located. The service understands and abides by user permissions. It is scalable beyond thousands of employees accessing billions of files across dozens of repositories, and is claimed to still deliver fast results in less than a second. That’s by using in-memory processing.

DirectSearch also provides native desktop integration into Microsoft’s Cortana digital assistant and Apple’s Spotlight search feature.

Cloudtenna real-time binding

A file index is built with real-time binding and undergoes consistency checks to capture changes such as deleted files and security changes. The index size is reduced through deduplication and something called ACL crunching – nothing to do with Anterior Cruciate Ligament crunching – which reduces the metadata space needed for ACL data.

A DirectSearch Core product for OEM’s provides developers with API access to a multi-repository file search infrastructure they can integrate into their products.