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August 16, 2018

Open Source is Now a Big Data Service


Open source technologies continue to make headway across a range of industries undergoing digital conversions. The big data sector has of course led the way with a growing list of Apache Foundation projects ranging from Hadoop to Spark that have made their way into data-centric enterprises coping with huge data volumes.

Among the vendors seeking to make access to open source technologies a single-click service is the Silicon Valley startup Instaclustr, which touts its “Open Source-as-a-Service” platform as a way of hosting and managing big data technologies in their “100 percent open source form.”

Instaclustr, Palo Alto, Calif., this week announced a $15 million investment by New York-based Level Equity. The startup said it would use the funds to expand its big data platform for managing “core” open source technologies like Apache Cassandra, Apache Kafka and Apache Spark.

The company’s platform is used to automate and manage access to analytics, database, messaging and search services. It expects to expand those services to include other open source platforms, including Apache Flink, Apache Ignite and the Elasticsearch analytics engine. It also plans to add other big data technologies that lend themselves to integration, scaling and performance as customers roll out next-generation data applications.

The growing list of open source technologies hosted on the platform are “capable of handling customers’ entire data layer,” the company said Thursday (Aug. 16). The other goal is to automate management of open source technologies so developers can focus on getting applications out the door.

Those applications tend to be enterprise add-ons to open source code or proprietary extensions higher up on the software stack.

Other vendors have offered similar frameworks for stitching together open source components such as Hadoop, Kafka and Spark as plug-ins. Among them is DataTorrent, which earlier this year introduced a framework called “Apoxi” (as in “glue”) designed to accelerate the delivery of secure and scalable big data applications.

Instaclustr is attempting to put a new twist on integrating and managing open source technologies through its full-blown service platform.

Among the startup’s more than 100 customers are DevOps tool vendor Atlassian and home audio specialist Sonos. Instaclustr claims its revenues have jumped 300 percent in the last two years.

Existing investors in the big data startup include three Australian firms: Bailador Technology InvestmentsANU Connect Ventures and Our Innovation Fund. The startup raised about $9 million in two previous funding rounds.

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