November 11, 2013

SYSTEX Introduces Splunk Appliance

Nicole Hemsoth

Is the industry looking for a Splunk appliance? One company is betting that it is, and has launched its own Intel-based appliance dedicated to providing tailored access to Splunk’s Enterprise platform.

Left: Splunk CEO Godfrey Sullivan; Right: SYSTEX Group President and CEO Frank Lin.

The new Splunk appliance, dubbed the “SBOX,” is being rolled out by the Taiwanese company SYSTEX Corporation, which is hoping to catch a rising star with the popular Splunk software and gain more notoriety in the global big data marketplace. SYSTEX says it’s been integrating Splunk for its clients for years, and is now leveraging that experience in a plug-and-play appliance that it believes will eliminate some of the up-front hassles of deployment.

“The global big data market size would grow to as high as $23.8 billion dollars in 2016, according to IDC, and Splunk is clearly the number one market leader in the big data space,” said Frank Lin, CEO of SYSTEX. “We understand the value of machine data and how to monetize data since partnering with Splunk in the very beginning. We believe SBOX is the spearhead to SYSTEX’s international presence in the global big data market, which is also in alignment with our ‘Go Global’ strategy of 2013.”

Per the SYSTEX announcement:

The design of [the] SBOX appliance is not only optimized for the hardware performance for Splunk deployment, but also for various kinds of Splunk day-to-day operations and management requirements. SBOX appliance combines storage and computing resources for Splunk into a single, integrated system, eliminating the need for an external storage network, such as a SAN or NAS. Data I/O is local to the appliance, yet behaves like centralized storage, delivering improved performance than commodity hardware that allows Splunk users to focus on realizing value from their data rather than managing their hardware infrastructure.

The “appliance-ization” of popular software frameworks has been a popular, if not curious phenomenon, particularly in the fledgling big data arena. Security appliances have become a winning strategy for companies like Cisco, which, according to IDC, took in $346 million in security appliance revenue in Q2 of this year – a figure that represents 16.2% of the global share.

Following that trend has been the rise of the Hadoop appliance with vendors including EMC Greenplum, Cisco and NetApp, HP, IBM, Oracle, and Teradata, all trying to grow their respective businesses through the boxing and selling of one flavor or another of the open source Apache framework. For Hadoop, it can be argued that this approach makes perfect sense given that there are some complexities involved with its configuration, and a shortage of talent to navigate them. The jury is still out on whether this will be a winning approach for these system integrators looking to cash in on attaching their brands to Hadoop.

SYSTEX is hoping to be at the forefront of a movement to capitalize on the growing “Internet of Things” movement by offering a Splunk appliance to businesses looking to take advantage of their operational data. At the very least, it may help its own business, which it says has acquired more than 400 Splunk customers since 2008.

The company says that it has more than 30 channel partners and customers in the Asia Pacific region that have participated in its beta program. It also say it has recently moved appliances into the largest telecommunications provider in Taiwan, Chunghwa Telecom, which says it’s used Splunk for years.

“In the past, we needed to source commodity hardware and performance, security, and manageability was always a concern,” said Roger Liu from the security lab of Chunghwa Telecom Research. “SBOX appliance eliminates any complexity in managing hardware infrastructure for Splunk software deployments, allowing us to focus on harnessing our data.

SYSTEX says that telecom providers, StarHub in Singapore, and Telkom Indonesia International have also adopted the appliance.

Related items:

Splunk Pumps Up Big Data with Hunk 

Intel Forms New Internet of Things Group 

Glassbeam SCALAR Set to Challenge Splunk 

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