Inktomi Corp., which has historically focused on providing search and content indexing applications to Internet service providers, yesterday switched gears and announced it would unleash several interrelated software offerings aimed at enterprise customers.
Peter Galvin, vice president and general manager of enterprise solutions at Foster City, California-based Inktomi, said yesterday that the proliferation of content on corporate networks, ranging from snippets in databases to video clips and word processing documents stored as files, was now comparable to what the public Internet experienced only a few years ago. To ease the pain of content overload, Galvin said Inktomi was introducing four new products aimed at publishing, distribution, retrieval and management of information inside corporations.
One product, TrafficCore, is based on a new protocol developed by Inktomi to identify and route content across IP (Internet protocol) networks based on type of application. "It's essentially Layer 7 routing in software," Galvin said. It works on top of existing routing schemes and dynamically allocates bandwidth set aside for a particular application, such as streaming media, and dynamically allocates a piece of that bandwidth based on policies set by network managers.
TrafficCore works in conjunction with two other new Inktomi products, Media Publisher and Traffic Edge. Galvin said Media Publisher helps manage user rights to digital content and Traffic Edge caches specified content closer to end users, which speeds user access to that content.
The three products will be available by the end of this year, Galvin said, noting that pricing has yet to be determined.
But Galvin said a new addition to Inktomi's indexing and retrieval engine would be available immediately. It enables users to search for content stored in structured databases, as well as for unstructured information. Inktomi's 2,000-document license fee for its enterprise search engine product comes with a price tag of US$1,995. Users can download a 30-day trial version of the search product from the company's Web site at no charge.
The company said IDC's market forecast shows that content delivery networks could help alleviate some critical problems that users face related to information management, or rather the lack of it. The research indicates Fortune 500 companies will lose $31.5 billion by 2003 due to the inability to find information quickly and efficiently.
April Jacobs of Network World contributed to this article.