Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Microservices Journal Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Baruch Sadogursky, XebiaLabs Blog, Tech Spot

Related Topics: Virtualization, Microservices Journal

Virtualization: Article

A New Era of Post-Production Data Management Software

Solving legacy problems of backup to tape

By Jerome M. Wendt

Nearly every small, medium or large organization is heading down the path of adopting disk-based data protection as a way to solve their legacy problems of backup to tape. But what many of these organizations have yet to recognize is that as they adopt disk to store these post-production copies of data, a new opportunity is presenting itself. They now have the option to manage and leverage post-production data in ways that were never possible when on tape but now lack the tools to do so.

Nearly every organization is somewhere on the journey towards implementing disk-based backup. But that does not mean every organization is implementing it in the same way or using the same technologies. Some are introducing disk in lieu of tape as a backup target. Others are using disk-based snapshots while still others are using some form of replication. Some are even using a combination all of these forms of disk-based data protection.

Then as they store this post-production data on disk they are looking to optimize how this data is stored. This is leading most organizations to try to deduplicate this data whenever possible and then use replication to move the data off-site.

But now that organizations are storing all of this data to disk, they have both a new opportunity and a new challenge in front of them. The opportunity is they now have near-real time copies of production data on disk.

These post-production copies of data are at most 24 hours old and may only be hours, minutes or seconds removed from the production copy of data from which they were derived. As such, they are excellent candidates for use for testing, development and disaster recovery.

At the same time, the challenge is finding software that can do this "post-production data management." After all, it is one thing to create a backup, snapshot or set up a replication job for a particular set of production data. But it is quite another job to then manage the tens, hundreds or even possibly thousands of these copies of post-production data in such a way that they are useable and easily managed by an organization.

These requirements are making it evident that a new category of software, which I refer to as "post-production data management software," needs to emerge. This software needs to give organizations the ability to manage this post-production data in such a way that they may perform tasks like:

  • Minimizing or eliminating backup and recovery windows by ensuring that data is on the right tier of disk at the right time
  • Ensuring that these post-production copies of data (backups, snapshots, replicated) are deduplicated whenever possible to conserve storage capacity
  • Data is replicated locally or remotely so business continuity and disaster recovery can occur automatically with minimal need for setup or ongoing management

Already we are seeing these next generation types of post-production data management capabilities begin to emerge. This last week FalconStor announced its new RecoverTrac technology that is now part of its Continuous Data Protector (CDP) software. RecoverTrac's purpose is to help CDP's snapshots and replication features deliver real world, turnkey business continuity and disaster recovery functionality without requiring organizations to spend tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars and numerous man hours in order to deploy, test, implement and manage it.

InMage is another company that has also been doing something similar for some time. In a series of two blog entries I wrote a couple of years ago I covered how a Dr. James Tu, an Information Security Officer at a real estate company, was using InMage Scout's replication capabilities to replicate data between two sites. Then within Scout he was creating virtual mount points so he could use them to perform recoveries at the secondary site.

Yet possibly the most interesting entrant in this emerging space is a new company called Actifio. It has built its entire platform around this concept of post-production data management and has gone beyond just acting as a backup target, replicating production data or creating snapshots of production data. While it can perform all three of these functions (it can act as either a backup target or a production file system which replicates or takes snapshots of production data) its ultimate objective is to optimally manage the post-production data under its control.

Once it has these post-production copies of data in whatever form they take (backup, snapshot or replicated,) Actifio can then deduplicate this data, put it on the appropriate tier of disk for recoveries or replicate it offsite for DR.

What specifically makes Actifio unique is its virtualization technology to re-purpose a unique copy of all post-production data for each of the different operational requirements. Instead of the complexity and cost of multiple tools for backup, snapshot, deduplication, disaster recovery or business continuance, Actifio is a single solution that manages data through its entire life cycle.

In the next few years I expect almost every size company to complete the transition from tape-based backup to using some form of disk-based data protection. However once that transition is complete, these organizations are going to recognize that just having all of their post-production data stored on disk adds insufficient value to their organization.

Instead they will want the option to easily and centrally manage where this post-production data is placed to facilitate business continuity, disaster recoveries and even operational testing and development of production applications. It is for this reason that I believe that companies will rapidly move beyond just implementing disk-based data protection and that a new era of organizations wanting and needing software that automates the management and placement of their post-production data is dawning.

More Stories By Derek Harris

Derek Harris Sr. is a senior technology writer and blogger with more than 20 years experience in journalism.

While covering a broad spectrum of technology segments, his focus is weighted on enterprise technologies in the data storage, security and infrastructure spaces.

@MicroservicesExpo Stories
Enterprises are fast realizing the importance of integrating SaaS/Cloud applications, API and on-premises data and processes, to unleash hidden value. This webinar explores how managers can use a Microservice-centric approach to aggressively tackle the unexpected new integration challenges posed by proliferation of cloud, mobile, social and big data projects. Industry analyst and SOA expert Jason Bloomberg will strip away the hype from microservices, and clearly identify their advantages and d...
There is no question that the cloud is where businesses want to host data. Until recently hypervisor virtualization was the most widely used method in cloud computing. Recently virtual containers have been gaining in popularity, and for good reason. In the debate between virtual machines and containers, the latter have been seen as the new kid on the block – and like other emerging technology have had some initial shortcomings. However, the container space has evolved drastically since coming on...
Container frameworks, such as Docker, provide a variety of benefits, including density of deployment across infrastructure, convenience for application developers to push updates with low operational hand-holding, and a fairly well-defined deployment workflow that can be orchestrated. Container frameworks also enable a DevOps approach to application development by cleanly separating concerns between operations and development teams. But running multi-container, multi-server apps with containers ...
Converging digital disruptions is creating a major sea change - Cisco calls this the Internet of Everything (IoE). IoE is the network connection of People, Process, Data and Things, fueled by Cloud, Mobile, Social, Analytics and Security, and it represents a $19Trillion value-at-stake over the next 10 years. In her keynote at @ThingsExpo, Manjula Talreja, VP of Cisco Consulting Services, will discuss IoE and the enormous opportunities it provides to public and private firms alike. She will shar...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo in Silicon Valley. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 17th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading in...
The integration between the 2 solutions is handled by a module provided by XebiaLabs that will ensure the containers are correctly defined in the XL Deloy repository based on the information managed by Puppet. It uses the REST API offered by the XL Deploy server: so the security permissions are checked as a operator could do it using the GUI or the CLI. This article shows you how use the xebialabs/xldeploy Puppet module. The Production environment is based on 2 tomcats instances (tomcat1 &...
SYS-CON Events announced today that EnterpriseDB (EDB), the leading worldwide provider of enterprise-class Postgres products and database compatibility solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. EDB is the largest provider of Postgres software and services that provides enterprise-class performance and scalability and the open source freedom to divert budget from more costly traditiona...
How can you compare one technology or tool to its competitors? Usually, there is no objective comparison available. So how do you know which is better? Eclipse or IntelliJ IDEA? Java EE or Spring? C# or Java? All you can usually find is a holy war and biased comparisons on vendor sites. But luckily, sometimes, you can find a fair comparison. How does this come to be? By having it co-authored by the stakeholders. The binary repository comparison matrix is one of those rare resources. It is edite...
With the advent of micro-services, the application design paradigm has undergone a major shift. The days of developing monolithic applications are over. We are bringing in the principles (read SOA) hereto the preserve of applications or system integration space into the application development world. Since the micro-services are consumed within the application, the need of ESB is not there. There is no message transformation or mediations required. But service discovery and load balancing of ...
Do you think development teams really update those BMC Remedy tickets with all the changes contained in a release? They don't. Most of them just "check the box" and move on. They rose a Risk Level that won't raise questions from the Change Control managers and they work around the checks and balances. The alternative is to stop and wait for a department that still thinks releases are rare events. When a release happens every day there's just not enough time for people to attend CAB meeting...
T-Mobile has been transforming the wireless industry with its “Uncarrier” initiatives. Today as T-Mobile’s IT organization works to transform itself in a like manner, technical foundations built over the last couple of years are now key to their drive for more Agile delivery practices. In his session at DevOps Summit, Martin Krienke, Sr Development Manager at T-Mobile, will discuss where they started their Continuous Delivery journey, where they are today, and where they are going in an effort ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that the "First Containers & Microservices Conference" will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City. The “Second Containers & Microservices Conference” will take place November 3-5, 2015, at Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Containers and microservices have become topics of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities.
Disruptive macro trends in technology are impacting and dramatically changing the "art of the possible" relative to supply chain management practices through the innovative use of IoT, cloud, machine learning and Big Data to enable connected ecosystems of engagement. Enterprise informatics can now move beyond point solutions that merely monitor the past and implement integrated enterprise fabrics that enable end-to-end supply chain visibility to improve customer service delivery and optimize sup...
Buzzword alert: Microservices and IoT at a DevOps conference? What could possibly go wrong? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by Jason Bloomberg, the leading expert on architecting agility for the enterprise and president of Intellyx, panelists will peel away the buzz and discuss the important architectural principles behind implementing IoT solutions for the enterprise. As remote IoT devices and sensors become increasingly intelligent, they become part of our distributed cloud en...
I’ve been thinking a bit about microservices (μServices) recently. My immediate reaction is to think: “Isn’t this just yet another new term for the same stuff, Web Services->SOA->APIs->Microservices?” Followed shortly by the thought, “well yes it is, but there are some important differences/distinguishing factors.” Microservices is an evolutionary paradigm born out of the need for simplicity (i.e., get away from the ESB) and alignment with agile (think DevOps) and scalable (think Containerizati...
In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by Jason Bloomberg, president of Intellyx, panelists Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at Akana; Lori MacVittie, IoT_Microservices Power PanelEvangelist for F5 Networks; and Troy Topnik, ActiveState’s Technical Product Manager; will peel away the buzz and discuss the important architectural principles behind implementing IoT solutions for the enterprise. As remote IoT devices and sensors become increasingly intelligent, they become part of ...
There is no doubt that Big Data is here and getting bigger every day. Building a Big Data infrastructure today is no easy task. There are an enormous number of choices for database engines and technologies. To make things even more challenging, requirements are getting more sophisticated, and the standard paradigm of supporting historical analytics queries is often just one facet of what is needed. As Big Data growth continues, organizations are demanding real-time access to data, allowing immed...
While the DevOps movement and associated technologies have garnered much attention and fanfare, few have addressed the core issue - the hand off from development to operations. We tend to not acknowledge the importance of Release Management - a critical DevOps function. Release Management is the bridge between development and operations that needs to be strengthened with the right approach, tools, teams and processes. The white paper "How to set up an Effective Enterprise Release Management F...
I’m not going to explain the basics of microservices, as that’s that’s handled elsewhere. The pattern of using APIs, initially built to cross application boundaries within a single enterprise or organization, is now being leveraged within a single application architecture to deliver functionality. Microservices adoption is being driven by two forces: the need for agility and speed; and the re-composing of applications enabling experimentation and demands to support new delivery platforms such as...
Announced separately, New Relic is joining the Cloud Foundry Foundation to continue the support of customers and partners investing in this leading PaaS. As a member, New Relic is contributing the New Relic tile, service broker and build pack with the goal of easing the development of applications on Cloud Foundry and enabling the success of these applications without dedicated monitoring infrastructure. Supporting Quotes "The proliferation of microservices and new technologies like Docker ha...