Welcome!

Weblogic Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Michael Meiner, Michael Bushong, Avi Rosenthal

Blog Feed Post

Part II: EMC Evolves Enterprise Data Protection with Enhancements

Part II: EMC Evolves Enterprise Data Protection with Enhancements

By Greg Schulz

Storage I/O trends

This is the second part of a two-part series on recent EMC backup and data protection announcements. Read part I here.

What about the products, what's new?

In addition to articulating their strategy for modernizing data protection (covered in part I here), EMC announced enhancements to Avamar, Data Domain, Mozy and Networker.

Data protection storage systems (e.g. Data Domain)

Building off of previously announced Backup Recovery Solutions (BRS) including Data Domain operating system storage software enhancements, EMC is adding more application and software integration along with new platform (systems) support.

Data Domain (e.g. Protection Storage) enhancements include:

  • Application integration with Oracle, SAP HANA for big data backup and archiving
  • New Data Domain protection storage system models
  • Data in place upgrades of storage controllers
  • Extended Retention now available on added models
  • SAP HANA Studio backup integration via NFS
  • Boost for Oracle RMAN, native SAP tools and replication integration
  • Support for backing up and protecting Oracle Exadata
  • SAP (non HANA) support both on SAP and Oracle

Data in place upgrades of controllers for 4200 series models on up (previously available on some larger models). This means that controllers can be upgraded with data remaining in place as opposed to a lengthy data migration.

Extended Retention facility is a zero cost license that enables more disk drive shelves to be attached to supported Data Domain systems. Thus there is a not a license fee, however you do pay for the storage shelves and drives to increase the available storage capacity. Note that this feature increases the storage capacity by adding more disk drives and does not increase the performance of the Data Domain system. Extended Retention has been available in the past however is now supported via more platform models. The extra storage capacity is essentially placed into a different tier that an archive policy can then migrate data into.

Boost for accelerating data movement to and from Data Domain systems is only available using Fibre Channel. When asked about FC over Ethernet (FCoE) or iSCSI EMC indicated its customers are not asking for this ability yet. This has me wondering if it is that the current customer focus is around FC, or if those customers are not yet ready for iSCSI or FCoE, or, if there were iSCSI or FCoE support, more customers would ask for it?

With the new Data Domain protection storage systems EMC is claiming up to:

  • 4x faster performance than earlier models
  • 10x more scalable and 3x more backup/archive streams
  • 38 percent lower cost per GB based on holding price points and applying improvements


EMC Data Domain data protection storage platform family


Data Domain supporting both backup and archive

Expanding Data Domain from backup to archive

EMC continues to evolve the Data Domain platform from just being a backup target platform with dedupe and replication to a multi-function, multi-role solution. In other words, one platform with many uses. This is an example of using one tool or technology for different purposes such as backup and archiving, however with separate polices. Here is a link to a video where I discuss using common tools for backup and archiving, however with separate polices. In the above figure EMC Data Domain is shown as being used for backup along with storage tiering and archiving (file, email, Sharepoint, content management and databases among other workloads).


EMC Data Domain supporting different functions and workloads

Also shown are various tools from other vendors such as Commvault Simpana that can be used as both a backup or archiving tool with Data Domain as a target. Likewise Dell products acquired via the Quest acquisition are shown along with those from IBM (e.g. Tivoli), FileTek among others. Note that if you are a competitor of EMC or simply a fan of other technology you might come to the conclusion that the above may not be different from others. Then again others who are not articulating their version or vision of something like the above figure probably should be also stating the obvious vs. arguing they did it first.

Data source integration (aka data protection software tools)

It seems like just yesterday that EMC acquired Avamar (2006) and NetWorker aka Legato (2003), not to mention Mozy (2007) or Dantz (Retrospect, since divested) in 2004. With the exception of Dantz (Retrospect) which is now back in the hands of its original developers, EMC continues to enhance and evolve Avamar, Mozy and NetWorker including with this announcement.

General Avamar 7 and Networker 8.1 enhancements include:

  • Deeper integration with primary storage and protection storage tiers
  • Optimization for VMware vSphere virtual server environments
  • Improved visibility and control for data protection of enterprise applications

Additional Avamar 7 enhancements include:

  • More Data Domain integration and leveraging as a repository (since Avamar 6)
  • NAS file systems with NDMP accelerator access (EMC Isilon & Celera, NetApp)
  • Data Domain Boost enhancements for faster backup / recovery
  • Application integration with IBM (DB2 and Notes), Microsoft (Exchange, Hyper-V images, Sharepoint, SQL Server), Oracle, SAP, Sybase, VMware images

Note that Avamar datastore is still used mainly for ROBO and desktop, laptop type backup scenarios that do not yet support Data Domain. Also see Mozy enhancements below).

Avamar supports VMware vSphere virtual server environments using granular change block tracking (CBT) technology as well as image level backup and recovery with vSphere plugins. This includes an Instant Access recovery when images are stored on Data Domain storage.

Instant Access enables a VM that has been protected using Avamar image level technology on Data Domain to be booted via an NFS VMware Datastore. VMware sees the VM and is able to power it on and boot directly from the Data Domain via the NFS Datastore. Once the VM is active, it can be Storage vMotion to a production storage VMware Datastore while active (e.g. running) for recovery on the fly capabilities.


Instant Access to a VM on Data Domain storage

EMC NetWorker 8.1 enhancements include:

  • Enhanced visibility and control for owners of data
  • Collaborative protection for Oracle environments
  • Synchronize backup and data protection between DBA and Backup admin's
  • Oracle DBAs use native tools (e.g. RMAN)
  • Backup admin implements organizations SLA's (e.g. using Networker)
  • Deeper integration with EMC primary storage (e.g. VMAX, VNX, etc)
  • Isilon integration support
  • Snapshot management (VMAX, VNX, RecoverPoint)
  • Automation and wizards for integration, discovery, simplified management
  • Policy-based management, fast recovery from snapshots
  • Integrating snapshots into and as part of data protection strategy. Note that this is more than basic snapshot management as there is also the ability to roll over a snapshot into a Data Domain protection storage tier.
  • Deeper integration with Data Domain protection storage tier
  • Data Domain Boost over Fibre Channel for faster backups and restores
  • Data Domain Virtual Synthetics to cut impact of full backups
  • Integration with Avamar for managing image level backup recovery (Avamar services embedded as part of NetWorker)
  • vSphere Web Client enabling self-service recovery of VMware images
  • Newly created VMs inherit backup polices automatically

Mozy is being positioned for enterprise remote office branch office (ROBO) or distributed private cloud where Avamar, NetWorker or Data Domain solutions are not as applicable. EMC has mentioned that they have over 800 enterprises using Mozy for desktop, laptop, ROBO and mobile data protection. Note that this is a different target market than the Mozy consumer product focused which also addresses smaller SMBs and SOHOs (Small Office Home Offices).

EMC Mozy enhancements to be more enterprise grade:

  • Simplified management services and integration
  • Active Directory (AD) for Microsoft environments
  • New storage pools (multiple types of pools) vs. dedicated storage per client
  • Keyless activation for faster provisioning of backup clients

Note that EMC enhanced earlier this year Data Protection Advisor (DPA) with version 6.0.

What does this all mean?

Storage I/O trends

Data protection and backup discussions often focus around disk vs. tape or cloud arguments, although this is changing. What is changing is growing awareness and discussion around how data protection storage mediums, systems and services are used along with the associated software management tools.

Some will say backup is broke often pointing a finger at a media or medium (e.g. tape and disk) about what is wrong. Granted in some environments the target medium (or media) destination is an easy culprit to point a finger to as the problem (e.g. the usual tape sucks or is dead) mantra. However, for many environments while there can be issues, it is more often than not the media, medium, device or target storage system that is broke, instead how it is being used or abused.

This means revisiting how tools are used along with media or storage systems allocated, used and retained with respect to different threat risk scenarios. After all, not everything is the same in the data center or information factory.

Thus modernizing data protection is more than swapping media or mediums including types of storage system from one to another. It is also more than swapping out one backup or data protection tool for another. Modernizing data protection means rethinking what different applications and data need to be protected against various threat risks.

Storage I/O trends

What this has to do with today's announcement is that EMC is among others in the industry moving towards a holistic data protection modernizing thought model.

In my opinion what you are seeing out of EMC and some others is taking that step back and expanding the data protection conversation to revisit, rethink why, how, where, when and by whom applications and information get protected.

This announcement also ties into finding and removing costs vs. simply cutting cost at the cost of something elsewhere (e.g. service levels, performance, availability). In other words, finding and removing complexities or overhead associated with data protection while making it more effective.

Some closing points, thoughts and more links:

There is no such thing as a data or information recession
People and data are living longer while getting larger
Not everything is the same in the data center or information factory
Rethink data protection including when, why, how, where, with what and by whom
There is little data, big data, very big data and big fast data
Data protection modernization is more than playing buzzword bingo
Avoid using new technology in old ways
Data footprint reduction (DFR) can be help counter changing data life-cycle patterns
EMC continues to leverage Avamar while keeping Networker relevant
Data Domain evolving for both backup and archiving as an example of tool for multiple uses

Ok, nuff said.

Cheers gs

Greg Schulz - Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press, 2011), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press, 2009), and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier, 2004)

twitter @storageio

All Comments, (C) and (TM) belong to their owners/posters, Other content (C) Copyright 2006-2013 StorageIO All Rights Reserved

Cheers Gs

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Greg Schulz

Greg Schulz is founder of the Server and StorageIO (StorageIO) Group, an IT industry analyst and consultancy firm. Greg has worked with various server operating systems along with storage and networking software tools, hardware and services. Greg has worked as a programmer, systems administrator, disaster recovery consultant, and storage and capacity planner for various IT organizations. He has worked for various vendors before joining an industry analyst firm and later forming StorageIO.

In addition to his analyst and consulting research duties, Schulz has published over a thousand articles, tips, reports and white papers and is a sought after popular speaker at events around the world. Greg is also author of the books Resilient Storage Network (Elsevier) and The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC). His blog is at www.storageioblog.com and he can also be found on twitter @storageio.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.
Whenever a new technology hits the high points of hype, everyone starts talking about it like it will solve all their business problems. Blockchain is one of those technologies. According to Gartner's latest report on the hype cycle of emerging technologies, blockchain has just passed the peak of their hype cycle curve. If you read the news articles about it, one would think it has taken over the technology world. No disruptive technology is without its challenges and potential impediments t...
If a machine can invent, does this mean the end of the patent system as we know it? The patent system, both in the US and Europe, allows companies to protect their inventions and helps foster innovation. However, Artificial Intelligence (AI) could be set to disrupt the patent system as we know it. This talk will examine how AI may change the patent landscape in the years to come. Furthermore, ways in which companies can best protect their AI related inventions will be examined from both a US and...
Bill Schmarzo, Tech Chair of "Big Data | Analytics" of upcoming CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York (November 12-13, 2018, New York City) today announced the outline and schedule of the track. "The track has been designed in experience/degree order," said Schmarzo. "So, that folks who attend the entire track can leave the conference with some of the skills necessary to get their work done when they get back to their offices. It actually ties back to some work that I'm doing at the University of San...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...