HPE touts Ezmeral Data Fabric for AI and machine learning workloads

HPE is to sell the HPE Ezemeral Data Fabric on a standalone basis and it has opened a marketplace for cloud-native software running on this AI-ML focused service.

Ezmeral Data Fabric was previously known as the MapR Data Platform for data lakes. It is an exabyte-scale, repository for streaming and file data, a real-time database, a global namespace, and integrations with Hadoop, Spark, and Apache Drill for analytics and other applications.

HPE said enterprise customers can use the service to create a unified data repository for data scientists, developers, and IT to access and use, with control of how it is used and shared. The company envisages AI and ML processing will take place across the IT spectrum, from edge sites and data centres through to the public clouds, with containerised apps processing data from a global repository.

The data is accessed via several protocols: HDFS, Posix, NFS, and S3, and can be tiered automatically to hot, warm and cold stores across hybrid cloud environments.

Kumar Sreekanti, HPE CTO and head of software, was quoted in a statement: “The separate HPE Ezmeral Data Fabric data store and new HPE Ezmeral Marketplace provide enterprises with the environment of their choice, and with visibility and governance across all enterprise applications and data through an open, flexible, cloud experience everywhere.”

HPE released Ezmeral, a software framework for containerised apps, in June 2020. At launch, there were two components: the Ezmeral Container Platform and Ezmeral ML Ops. Ezmeral was added to the GreenLake subscription service earlier this month. Now we have the separated-out Ezmeral Data Fabric, Ezmeral ML Ops, an Ezmeral Technology Ecosystem program and the Ezmeral Marketplace.

Vendors on the new marketplace are validated via the new Ezmeral Technology Ecosystem. Dataiku, MinIO, H2O.AI, Rapt.AI, Run:AI, Sysdig, and Unravel have already passed muster. In addition, Apache Spark,  Tensorflow, Gitlab, and Elastic Stack are available on the marketplace.

Ezmeral Data Fabric is available as a software license subscription to run on any infrastructure or public cloud. The Ezmeral Container Platform and Ezmeral ML Ops are available as cloud services through GreenLake now, and HPE plans to offer the Ezmeral Data Fabric as a GreenLake service in the future.

Data fabric softener

With enterprise adoption of containerisation poised to go mainstream, multiple vendors have developed software management products to abstract the complexities of Kubernetes-orchestration of containers.

HPE’s Ezmeral competitors include VMware Tanzu, Red Hat OpenShift, Dell Karavi, to an extent, Diamanti, the Hitachi Vantara Kubernetes Service, MayaData’s Kubera, NetApp Astra, and Pure Storage Portworx.

Startups like Diamanti and MayaData see a great opportunity to make enterprise inroads with their Kubernetes management magic carpets. Incumbents like HPE see an opportunity to extend existing customer wallet share and a necessity to deny wannabe startups any headroom.