4 Options CIOs are Considering for Centera End of Life

| 7 minute read


If you’re facing a lengthy undesirable Centera migration decision,
then this guide is for you.


As of 31 March 2018, the Centera product line discontinued and became an end of life product. This resulted in no further product development. Leaders have a Fixed Content headache with the applications like FileNet, CMOD, Enterprise Vault, NICE, and EMR/HER/PACS applications.

Why Centera Customers are Considering a Change

Many Centera customers purchased the storage product for a specific use case several years ago. Since then, several other storage platforms and cloud-based storage have been introduced and evolved in the market over this timeframe. Enterprises are deploying hybrid cloud storage solutions to balance cost containment, data performance and data security.

For Centera, there is a perceived risk of migration to modernise your storage environment. You could be facing a lengthy and costly migration that non-TES customers report can take many months to years to complete. Slow migrations lead to an increased risk of downtime and data loss, plus the additional cost of running two systems for a lengthy period of time whilst your migration takes place.

This large (in some case petabyte-scale) repository of data is not deriving any business value due to the proprietary Centera interface which precludes any meaningful data analysis. Wouldn’t it be great to be using the trends seen in this data as part of an AI training model to be used for a competitive edge or a better quality of service?

4 Options to Address EMC Centera End of Life for Enterprise Storage

When dealing with end-of-life announcements, some organisations act quickly and move/migrate to another solution. Others seek to get maximum value from their current platform and manage the risk until such time as it becomes too expensive or risky to maintain.

Do nothing is still an option, just not a sustainable one. The status quo comes with additional risk since the proprietary hardware parts are no longer available and support is more difficult to procure.

However, ‘Do nothing’ is the exception in 2021. Over the last few years, concerned Centera customers are opting not to stick with the status quo and are seeking considering a change due to a) a short term need to expand enterprise storage capacity, b) the need to reduce current support costs and overall TCO, and/or c) a longer-term enterprise storage solution that is more flexible, scalable and secure.

Since ‘Do Nothing’ is the least favourable, the following are the three (3) appropriate migration paths for Centera:

Migrate to another On-prem platform(s)

This might be the most straight forward path, moving from one on-prem platform to another like IBM Cloud Object Storage.

Migrate to Cloud-only

This option is common with enterprises that are striving for a pure cloud-only architecture. Often years in the making to achieve, the migration to the cloud is often time-consuming, lengthy and costly upfront in order to receive the expected long-term cost savings (hint: early adopters are learning, especially during COVID, that the opposite may occur).

Hybrid Cloud Storage

The third option that is gaining momentum in 2020 is the concept of Hybrid Enterprise Cloud Storage, the blending of the best of cloud and on-prem storage. The Hybrid Cloud Storage infrastructure allows for matching the workload to the approach public cloud or on-prem hardware – thereby the storage of your data and content is matched with the most appropriate location based on expected cost, accessibility, frequency, security policies, and use case.

How Much Time Should You Dedicate to Your Centera Migration Project?

This can be challenging because of the manner in which Centera stores the data. This can be 100’s of TBs or even PBs scale and with a lack of application integration or multiple threading.

We have heard of horror stories of migration efforts taking years, often involving 3rd party consultants. This lengthy process can be unnecessarily expensive and risky. As each day passes the probability of the EoL Centera system experiencing an unrecoverable hardware failure increases.

TES has a modern approach that migrates up to 14TB/day and 50 million objects/day from Centera. This speed reduces the migration project from years to weeks and costs significantly less. Schedule a 15-minute consultation to determine the expected timeframe of your migration project using our modern, unique process. If you need a speedy and less costly migration solution for Centera, contact an Enterprise Storage specialist at TES.

The Typical Risks Associated with a Centera Migration Project?

As with any migration project, risk mitigation is best achieved with the proper planning, project management and allocation of resources. In the case of re-platforming from an EoL product like Centera, the speed of the migration effort (or lack of it) is a risk factor considering hardware failure may be unrecoverable.

In addition, migrating data from Centera tends to be trickier versus other storage platforms because of the proprietary API that allows applications to write data to and extract data from the repository. Extraction and migration tends to be slower and drags out the data migration process.

Finally, for many enterprises, any migration needs to include a process that ensures meeting the relevant regulations. As such, a cross-platform migration requires a process that ensures chain of custody.

How Can I Access Free Support to Build My Business Case?

With the proliferation of use cases, the simple storage decision is not straightforward anymore.

The Enterprise Storage Technical Specialists at TES will guide you to the ideal decision using a unique blend of analysis tools and assessment process. We can help you evaluate appropriate storage options within your own IT environment – often at no charge to you.

See if you qualify for the free business case development assessment by one of our Enterprise Storage Technical Specialists. Contact us today here.