Honoring Dell EMC’s Data Protection and Storage Technical Directors

Everything changes. Organizational structures, company names, and, of course, technology. For technical companies to survive, however, one thing cannot change. We need technical leaders who can turn changing technology into new products that solve our customers’ problems. Dell EMC has replaced the Core Technologies Division with the Data Protection Division and the Storage Division, but we are still are building the core of customers’ data infrastructure.

Therefore, every quarter, we recognize the newest Dell EMC Data Protection and Storage Technical Directors. These are senior technical leaders who have delivered a sustained business impact by delivering – products, solutions, and customer experience. They are the engine of the company. The previous recipients are detailed here and here.

John Adams – John helps deliver VMAX performance that matters – performance for our customers’ most important applications. He’s demonstrated and optimized performance in the most demanding customer environments. He then drives customer-critical performance work into the engineering team – from evaluating large flash drives to host LUN scaling to dynamic cache partitioning. His skill spans from Unisys to EPIC (leading health care database/application). John is the go-to person who connects with customers, customer support, and engineering for their performance needs.

Michael Barber – Michael Barber is the rare quality engineer who truly is the customers’ advocate. First, Michael understands that customers buy VMAX replication to ensure that their mission-critical data is always safe. Since customer environments are constantly under load, facing all manner of unusual circumstances (especially in a disaster), Michael has built a tool that validates data consistency while generating all of those unusual situation. The tool is used across VMAX and much of the rest of the company. Michael also reviews and influences core features to ensure they meet customers’ standards and needs. VMAX customers have Michael Barber on their side.

Fred Douglis – Fred has led Dell EMC’s Data Protection Division’s academic strategy, while also driving research into the product. Under Fred’s guidance, Dell EMC has consistently published in prestigious conferences and journals. This work has helped advanced the state-of-the-art in deduplication research and development. He has also built strong relationships with leading universities like University of Chicago, Northeastern, and University of Wisconsin at Madison. His contributions to the industry have also been recognized. Fred is an IEEE Fellow and is currently serving on the Board of Governors for the IEEE Computer Society. Finally, the innovation of Data Domain BOOST-FS has enabled customers to more easily and rapidly protect custom and big data apps.

Martin Feeney – Martin helps the largest customers in the world run their most mission critical applications. As an expert in both FICON and VMAX, Martin has helped our mainframe customers get reliable access and predictable performance from their storage. He was instrumental in unifying the data format and storage algorithms for VMAX Mainframe and Open Systems support. This enables our customers to get better performance, functionality, and reliability more quickly. Martin is also responsible for optimizing the VMAX2 performance while also delivering the Mainframe Host Adapter optimizations for the VMAX3 platform. As customers continue to run their most important workloads on Mainframe, Martin keeps those applications running optimally.

Simon Gordon – Simon has been the Product Management lead for ProtectPoint for VMAX and XtremIO. Our most innovative customers deploy ProtectPoint to protect, refresh, and test some of their largest and most mission critical databases – like Oracle, DB2, Microsoft SQL, and EPIC. Simon has been instrumental in connecting customers, the field, application partners, and our engineering teams so that we can deliver a comprehensive protection solution built on top of revolutionary technology.

Colin Johnson – Colin, an expert in user experience design, has been the UX leader for Data Domain Management Console, Data Domain Long Term Retention in the Cloud, and ProtectPoint for XtremIO. Colin’s expertise in user experience, visual design, customer interaction, and data protection has enabled the Data Protection Division to deliver products that are easier for our customers to use across cloud, replication, multi-tenancy, and next-generation data protection.

Jerry Jourdain – Jerry has been the driving technical force behind Dell EMC’s email archiving solutions. Jerry co-founded Dell EMC’s initial industry-leading email archiving product, EmailXtender, and then was Chief Architect of the follow-on SourceOne product. Thousands of customers depend on Dell EMC to protect their most critical information for compliance, legal, or business needs. Jerry ensures that we can address their most challenging compliance and retention needs.

Amit Khanna – Amit has been modernizing data protection for NetWorker customers. He was the force behind NetWorker’s vProxy support – standalone, re-purposable, fully RESTful protection for VMware. Amit began by integrating Data Domain BOOST into NetWorker and tying together NetWorker and Data Domain replication. He then delivered the policy-based management for NetWorker 9, which allows customers to move toward Backup as a Service. His work on CloudBoost allows customers to back up both to the cloud and in the cloud. Amit’s work has made NetWorker a core part of modern data protection.

Ilya Liubovich – Over the past couple of years, VMAX customers have raved about how much easier it is to manage their systems. Ilya led one of the biggest optimizations, Unisphere/360 for VMAX. It is already attached to the majority of new VMAX systems, simplifying the management of their most critical storage. Furthermore, as security becomes an even more important issue in the world, Ilya has led the security standards for the management software – ensuring compliance to the highest standards, without intruding on the customer experience. With Ilya’s work, VMAX delivers high-end storage functionality with greater simplicity.

Prasanna Malaiyandi – Prasanna, a Data Protection Solution Architect, has led both ProtectPoint and ECDM from inception to delivery. ProtectPoint directly backs up VMAX and XtremIO systems to Data Domain, delivering up to 20x faster data protection than any other method. ECDM enables IT organizations to deliver Data Protection as a Service. Protection teams centrally control data protection, while allowing application, VM, and storage administrators to back up and recover data on their own, using high performance technologies like ProtectPoint and DD BOOST. Prasanna connected disparate products to bring Dell EMC products together somewhere other than the purchase order.

Jeremy O’Hare – Jeremy has delivered core VMAX functionality that separates it from every other product in the marketplace. Most recently, Jeremy led the creation of VMAX compression that delivers space savings with unparalleled performance in the industry. He’s also been instrumental to Virtual LUNS (VLUN) which enabled the groundbreaking FAST functionality. As a technical leader, Jeremy stands out for being able to bring solutions across teams. Compression touches virtually every part of the VMAX and Jeremy drove development and QA efforts across all of the groups, so that our customers enjoy compression without compromise on their VMAX systems.

Kedar Patwardhan – Kedar enables Avamar customers to solve their biggest, most challenging backup problems. First, Kedar created the only traditional file-system backup that doesn’t need to scan the file system. Customers with large file servers can scale their backups without compromising on functionality. Second, Kedar delivered OpenStack integration to protect some of our largest customers’ data. Third, the integration with vRA enables our Dell EMC’s customers to manage their protection from VMware interfaces. For the largest file systems to OpenStack to large VMware deployments, Kedar’s work enables us to deliver simple, scalable data protection.

Rong Yu – Rong is responsible for key algorithmic and architectural improvements to Symmetrix systems. First, he delivered a Quality of Service (QoS) framework that delivers both customer-defined Service Level Objectives while meeting the needs of internal operations like cloning and drive rebuild. He overhauled the prefetching model to leverage the knowledge of the host/application access patterns. He continues to help optimize RDF performance. Most recently, he developed the new middleware layer in the VMAX system that has enabled new features (like compression) and performance optimizations (optimizing cache-read-miss). Customers depend on VMAX for reliable, predictable high performance regardless of the situation. Rong’s work helps ensure that VMAX meets and exceeds those expectations.

Congratulations and thanks to the new and existing Dell EMC Technical Directors. You are the engine of Dell EMC!

~Stephen Manley @makitadremel

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