Autonomy’s private cloud passes 50 petabytes in size

By Graeme Burton
10 Apr 2012 View Comments
Autonomy founder and CEO Mike Lynch

Autonomy's private cloud service has passed the 50 petabyte mark, doubling in size in less than a year, according to the company.

The HP-owned company's internal cloud network contains web content, video, email and multimedia data of more than 1,000 clients on 6,500 servers in 14 datacentres around the world. The data is equivalent in size to 665 years of high-definition video – or four billion drawers of paper-filled filing cabinets.

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Autonomy claims that it has some one billion new items of content being stored on its private cloud every day.

In May 2011, after the company acquired the digital archiving business of Iron Mountain in a $350m cash transaction, Autonomy's CEO Mike Lynch (pictured) claimed that the deal would increase the amount of data under management from 17 petabytes to 25 petabytes.

The company said this total grew to 31 petabytes in August 2011, before booming to 50 petabytes barely eight months later. Autonomy attributes this surging demand to both an increase in customer content and more customers.

"Our cloud contains four trillion objects and grows by more than one billion more per day. This data is all customer-generated," a spokesman told Computing.

The cloud is managed using Autonomy's Intelligent Data Operating Layer (IDOL), the company's suite of software technologies for recognising concepts and patterns in structured and unstructured data.

Unlike a public cloud, a private cloud – such as Autonomy's – clearly separates usage for each organisation, giving them a guaranteed level of IT resources and, hence, service levels. Autonomy claims that nine out of 10 of the world's largest banks use Autonomy's private cloud to store financial data.

Autonomy was acquired just months after its Iron Mountain deal by HP for $10.3bn – a deal widely regarded as over-valuing Autonomy and precipitating the abrupt departure of HP CEO at the time Leo Apotheker, who was replaced by former eBay CEO Meg Whitman.

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