Is data protection really heading towards consolidation?

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Is data protection really heading towards consolidation?

It’s been said that the data protection industry is heading towards a consolidated approach, yet research has shown that many organisations are still relying on several data protection solutions, so what really is happening?

The benefits of server virtualisation are compelling and are driving the transition to large-scale virtual server roll outs; cost savings through server consolidation and business flexibility are certainly appealing.

However, the desire for virtual server deployments is showing consequences for data storage and data protection. The consolidation of physical servers is resulting in already limited resources being made even scarcer and with extremely demanding SLAs for supporting such critical applications.

With such a shift towards virtualised datacentres and 24 hour monitoring, there is a need to rethink the traditional data protection techniques. Are they still doing the job? Or is today’s virtual datacentre a different beast, one that you need new, more suitable tools to protect?

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Re: Is data protection really heading towards consolidation?

With all the advances in data protection for virtual machines, there is really no reason that any organization should be using "traditional" backup methods for VMs. While we see a number of organizations still protecting VMs as they would physical machines, the general intent is to move towards applications that do integrate with the VM APIs- today products like Veeam and vRanger have done very well in this space, but the incumbent vendors (Symantec, IBM) are certainly catching up. But even if an organization chooses two disparate backup solutions for virtual and physical data protection, or a single solution that supports both- new challenges are going to be introduced when trying to manage the virtual data protection environment.

It is much easier to "orphan" a VM (not have a backup policy associated with the machine) seeing it is easier for others in the organization to spin up VMs without informing the backup admin. Conversely, a VM can be easily over-protected when snapshots and backups are being run against a VM, wasting capacity and potential hogging datastore resources. A view into policy configuration is critical in such a dynamic environment. So while organizations should take advantage of all the features virtualization specific backup applications have to offer- they need to make sure they keep a keen eye on management issues or there may be problems with recovery and resource costs.

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Re: Is data protection really heading towards consolidation?

I think data protection is doing the opposite, dispersing, as new entrants come into the market. Here I'm thinking of Veeam and cloud backup services like Mozy, Carbonite, CrashPlan from Code 42, Box and others. Which of course makes it more necessary to have some kind of overarching backup and data protection facility to prevent VM and/or app orphaning as Nancy discusses.

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the general intent is to move towards applications that do integrate with the VM APIs- today products like Veeam and vRanger have done very well in this space, but the incumbent vendors (Symantec, IBM) are certainly catching up. But even if an organization chooses two disparate backup solutions for virtual and physical data protection, or a single solution that supports both- new challenges are going to be introduced when trying to manage the virtual data protection environment.

____________________

justin

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