Cloudera SDX Provides Shared Data Catalog, Governance, and Security for Multi-Function Analytics

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Cloudera has announced SDX (Shared Data Experience) for Cloudera Enterprise, a suite of tools to build and run multi-function analytics on-premises and in cloud environments.

The SDX suite applies shared governance, security, management, ingest, and data cataloging to disparate applications to help Cloudera Enterprise customers  improve agility and self service, lower costs, and speed time to market for new products and services.

According to Cloudera, many of today’s executive-level initiatives, including cybersecurity, connecting products and services, and increasing the lifetime value of a customer, require a variety of complex applications working together.

The ability to bring multiple applications together on shared data makes the merging of data, and the insights that emerge from the combination, much easier accomplish, explained Charles Zedlewski, SVP, Products at Cloudera. Increasingly, he noted, the analytic problems that businesses face today are multidisciplinary in nature, and not just business intelligence or data engineering problems but also machine learning and real-time problems. As a result, a single analytic problem typically requires insight and remediation across multiple disciplines.

For example, Internet of things (IoT) applications often involve ingest, ad hoc and analytics, and machine learning on batch and streaming data. And, next-best offer platforms may use machine learning and real-time processing together. In many cases, these multi-function application clusters either run on cloud infrastructure or leverage data that was generated in the cloud.

This makes the ability to bring multiple disparate applications together to work on the same data very attractive, said Zedlewski.

Developing and delivering these complex applications is a challenge in multi-tenant clusters on-premises, and it is particularly difficult in cloud environments because data context and policies don’t persist in transient environments. Furthermore, most cloud services are actually siloed applications running in isolated clusters.

SDX is aimed at enabling customers to create, govern, secure, and manage these multi-function, high-value analytic applications. SDX helps to facilitate Cloudera-certified partner solutions that integrate with and further enhance the platform capabilities.

A key component within SDX, according to Cloudera, is the shared data catalog upon which consistent security, governance, and management functions can be established and leveraged for both long-running and transient analytics applications.The shared data catalog is extremely beneficial for ease of development of multidisciplinary applications, said Zedlewski. And it is much less expensive than needing to license multiple disparate vertical stacks that are specialized for each function, making it advantageous from both a license cost perspective and from an infrastructure cost perspective. And third, he noted, it is a much better way to go for securing and governing applications that are being built. A shared data and metadata catalog is imperative for dealing with HIPAA and PCI-DSS compliance today and looming requirements such as GDPR. The catalog makes it easier to quickly find and understand the context of data, enabling self-service applications and providing inviolable audit and lineage functionality.

Self-service clusters in the cloud do not naturally share data and metadata, so individual clusters become de facto silos. By sharing persistent data and metadata across on-demand applications and transient clusters, Cloudera  says, customers can stay agile and ensure each isolated cluster does not require individual control and management nor incur the additional cost of data replication and storage. Furthermore, without centralized security controls, administrators are forced to continuously reapply security and access policies against multiple copies of siloed data, creating extra work and greater risk of exposing sensitive information.  With Cloudera SDX, security is applied consistently at the data level. Policies are pervasive and do not need to change or be reapplied when the data is moved or used within a new analytics application.

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