Today we announced that our Global File Lock® technology is officially a patented innovation. But what is a global file lock, exactly? And how does Nasuni technology differ from the other global file collaboration tools on the market today?
I’ll answer both of these questions in this post, but first let me explain why so many solutions providers claim to offer global collaboration tools. Simply put, large enterprises need them—often desperately. We work with some of the largest companies in the world, across multiple industries, and we’re seeing the same demands over and over.
Manufacturing companies have their engineers in one region and their factories in another part of the world, and these two groups need to be able to work on and quickly share the same large, complex files. Media and marketing agencies have creative offices all over the globe that need to collaborate to get their best work to clients as quickly as possible. Architecture, engineering, and construction giants want to tap into talent across their companies on a given project—not just utilize the talent closest to the client or job site. Whether the files involved are created by Adobe Creative Cloud, Autodesk, Microsoft Office, or Siemens TeamCenter applications, they need to be quickly and securely shared around the world.
But that’s only the first step. These files also need strict version controls to ensure that multiple people in multiple global offices aren’t updating a given file at the same time. Otherwise the users will be forced to waste time managing and merging all these different revisions. The point of global collaboration is to increase efficiency and accelerate workflows, not slow them to a halt.
Nasuni provides a cloud-native global file system, UniFS®, with multi-site on-premises NAS access. And with our Global File Lock technology, users can share and collaborate on files worldwide with the same locking experience they now enjoy with single-site NAS infrastructure. The global lock works like a local one, transforming enterprises into truly efficient global organizations.
In brief, the Nasuni Global File Lock:
- Provides users and clients at all global locations with secure high-performance access to files of any size or complexity with consistent file locking.
- Enables active file collaboration between any sites or locations worldwide without the worry of data conflicts or corruption.
- Maintains security, ensuring that all traffic—whether it’s data, management, or locking related—is fully encrypted.
- Minimizes global file lock traffic to reduce costs and maintain performance and efficiency.
Oh, and it really works, too. This isn’t a nascent technology or a marketing ploy. We didn’t just bolt this on to catch up with the times. We’ve offered Global File Lock for years, and today, some of our clients have utilized the capability over 2B times during their Nasuni subscription. We continue to work closely with our most demanding clients, particularly in engineering and design fields who’ve helped us make our solution extremely scalable.
Why Nasuni Global File Lock Technology is Completely Unique
Multiple features differentiate Nasuni Global File Lock technology from the other global file sharing and collaboration tools out there. Whether you’re looking at Enterprise File Sync and Share (EFSS) systems, cloud provider solutions that offer cloud syncing, NAS add-on products, or even Cloud NAS approaches, the Nasuni technology offers seven distinct advantages.
- Design: Nasuni is built on a hub-and-spoke model in which the cloud-native file system is the single source of truth. Our Global File Lock uses cloud resources to provide high performance and extreme scale for global locking activity. The core design of UniFS is perfectly suited for global file locking. Other solutions might be able to provide global access but extending global locking to multiple locations would require a comprehensive revamp. Nasuni is built for this.
- Scale: The Nasuni Global File Lock can scale up so that multiple global regions enjoy low latency access to the most recent files, allowing for true follow-the-sun collaboration. Some companies provide NAS add-on products that extend the locks from a central NAS to additional locations. This can work well for small implementations, but not at enterprise scale.
- Resilience: The Global File Lock also offers redundant lock services by using different regions and providing fail-over—yet another advantage of the cloud-native file system design.
- Performance and Tuning: The ultimate aim of our technology is to help organizations become more efficient global enterprises, and the Global File Lock provides multiple modes of operation designed to minimize global locking traffic, which boosts performance.
- Ease-of-Use: EFSS and other solutions don’t provide true, transparent global file locks. It’s up to the user to know which file is the latest version, resolve conflicts, or go through a file check out process. This is not the case with Nasuni—our technology has been proven to eliminate these hassles.
- Cost: Other approaches to global file collaboration depend on WAN acceleration and heavy MPLS usage. When the locking mechanism resides on a local device, for example, and not in the cloud, then every filer has to communicate every time a file is opened, saved, or closed. This drives up traffic tremendously. Nasuni minimizes traffic by relying on standard Internet connections to keep global file collaboration costs low, even when the largest and most complex files are involved.
- Security: Nasuni ensures that all traffic is fully encrypted, and as part of the Nasuni Cloud File Services platform, all sites also benefit from automatic data protection through Continuous File Versioning® and 15-minute DR.
Features aside, we can attribute many of the benefits of the Global File Lock to all the years we have been testing this technology with huge enterprises. It works. Other providers might try to play catch up, and redesign or revamp their global file access solutions to extend file locking, but it’s going to take several generations for them to achieve the performance and efficiency Nasuni delivers today.
The Proven Global File Locking Solution
Providing a high performance, scalable global file system with global file locking is not a trivial task. And while we’re certainly thrilled that we’ve been awarded with a patent for all these years of hard work, the real satisfaction for us comes in the form of customer feedback. Our customer base is growing faster than ever. We’re signing on with more of the largest companies in the world, across every industry, and while we certainly can’t attribute all of this momentum to the Global File Lock, it’s exciting to see a true innovation get recognized.