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CTERA Patents Namespace Management, Introduces Team Projects

We’ve recently been informed that our newest patent application has been approved, and we wanted to share the good news with you.

Filed under the name “Multi-level namespace management system” (U.S. patent 10,296,595), this CTERA patent conceptualizes a storage system that includes a “personal” space for personal folders, wherein each end user may create their own private folders, and a “project” space, wherein project folders are maintained.

This is the tenth patent awarded to CTERA by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office over the last few years, and we have dozens of additional applications pending.

While CTERA is considered the global leader in enterprise file services by many benchmarks – we were the first to invent the concept of a NAS front-end for cloud storage (also known as a cloud storage gateway); we’ve sold more than 50,000 edge filers; and two million endpoint users are powered by CTERA – it’s still important to me and to the company that we continue to deliver strategic innovations as well as new benefits to our customers.

This particular innovation for data management is fully available to customers today via the CTERA Portal, our large-scale data management and global file system.

Shared Projects and Team Projects

If you’re new to the Portal, here’s a quick overview: Cloud Drive folders are folders created for personal and shared use. You can invite co-workers, groups of co-workers, or external users to collaborate with you on any folder or file. Collaborators can view or edit files in the project and add files and folders to the project, depending on their permissions.

Shared folders are presented to collaborators with the name of the folder owner as part of the name. And importantly, the storage consumed when sharing a folder with other users is taken from the user quota of the user who owns the shared folder.

The patent’s innovation introduces a new concept with regard to user storage quotas that we call Team Projects. Team project folders are shared equally by the collaborators, and therefore enable a user to request a folder with a storage amount larger than his/her individual quota.

A user submits a Team Projects folder request to an IT admin; the admin can approve or reject the request.

After a user requests a team project, an administrator who receives an email asking for the team project can click in the email Approve or Reject. Clicking Approve or Reject, displays the option to approve or reject the team projects request. It’s literally that simple.

As well, folders can be created in a personal space and then converted to project folders in a projects space.

The request is approved; an email alerts the user to the project’s storage allocation.

A user may then share the Project Folder with colleagues.

New Collaboration Benefits for Enterprises

The patent solves the problem of how to reduce the effort that IT departments spend on creating space for projects in the system by allowing selected end users to define their own project spaces and make them available to the project members, with the governance of IT yet requiring minimal intervention.

Team Projects’ storage allocations differ from shared project allocations in two ways:

  • The user can request that a folder in the Cloud Drive be a Team Project, with the storage allocation taken from the storage provisioned for that team’s Portal and not from the folder owner’s storage quota, or
  • Administrators can define Team Projects in the Cloud Drive for a user, with the storage allocation taken from the storage provisioned for that team Portal and not from the folder owner’s storage quota

The multi-level namespace management system patent fits with CTERA’s strategy of empowering end users to collaborate in an agile way, reducing the burden on IT departments and improving user productivity, and maintaining strict governance and security by means of automated policies.

I am incredibly excited to bring this namespace management system and team projects to our customers. And as you can see, though we continue to add new global customers around the world to grow the business, we are not standing still by any means. I hope to share news of additional patent approvals with you very soon. Until then, stay tuned!

Aron Brand is CTERA’s Chief Technology Officer. Follow Aron on Twitter Twitter icon and read his other posts.

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