One of the more perplexing challenges that Nutanix administrators face is how to protect the data in their Nutanix deployments. Granted, Nutanix natively offers its own data protection utilities. However, these utilities leave gaps that enterprises are unlikely to find palpable when protecting their production applications. This is where Comtrade Software’s HYCU and ExaGrid come into play as their combined solutions provide a more affordable and elegant approach to protecting Nutanix environments.
Early in my IT career, a friend who owns a software company told me he had been informed by a peer that he wasn’t charging enough for his software. This peer advised him to adopt a “flinch-based” approach to pricing. He said my friend should start with a base licensing cost that meets margin requirements, and then keep adding on other costs until the prospective customer flinches. My friend found that approach offensive, and so do I.
The all-flash array market has settled down considerably in the last few years. While there are more all-flash arrays (90+ models) and vendors (20+) than ever before, the ways in which these models can be grouped and classified has also become easier. As DCIG looks forward to releasing a series of Buyer’s Guides covering all-flash arrays in the coming months, it can break these all-flash arrays into five (and soon to be six) general classifications based upon their respective architectures and use cases.
Deduplication backup target appliances remain a critical component of the data protectioninfrastructure for many enterprises. While storing protected data in the cloud may be fine for very small businesses or even as a final resting place for enterprise data, deduplication backup target appliances continue to function as their primary backup target and primary source for recovering data. It is for these reasons that enterprises frequently turn to deduplication backup target appliances from Dell EMC and ExaGrid to meet these specific needs that are covered in recent DCIG Pocket Analyst Report.
No business – and I mean no business – regardless of its size ever wants to experience an outage for any reason or duration. However, to completely avoid outages means spending money and, in most cases, a lot of money. That is why, when someone shared with me earlier this week, that one of their clients has put in place a solution that keeps their period of downtime to what appears as a ‘glitch’ to their end-users for nominal cost, it struck a chord with me.
Simplicity is one of those terms that I love to hate. On one hand, people generally want the products that they buy to be “simple” to deploy and manage so they can “set them and forget them.” The problem that emerges when doing product evaluations, especially when evaluating all-flash arrays(AFAs), is determining what features contribute to making AFAs simple to deploy and manage. The good news is that over the last few years five key features have emerged that organizations can use to measure the simplicity of an AFA to select the right one for their environment.
Many organizations are using all-flash arrays in their data centers today. When asked about the benefits they have achieved, two benefits are almost always top of mind. The first benefit mentioned is the increase in application performance. Indeed, increased performance was the primary rationale for the purchase of the all-flash array. The second benefit came as an unexpected bonus; the decrease in time spent managing storage. As organizations consolidate many applications on each all-flash array; and are discovering that data tiering and quality of service features are important for preserving these benefits.
When one examines enterprise data protection and data storage products through the lens of hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) designs, one would think each product either supports an HCI architecture or it does not. But as one begins to see when one scrutinizes this topic, the answer is not a simple “Yes” or “No”. Nuancing how well or if a product fits into an HCI design, one first needs to think about the question or even the series of questions that he or she should ask to properly make this assessment.
At the end of the year people naturally reflect on the events of the past year and look forward to the new. I am no different. It is as I reflect on the past year and look ahead on how IT infrastructures within organizations have changed and will change, 2017 has been as transformative as any year in the past decade if not the past 50 years. While that may sound presumptuous, 2017 seems to be the year that reflects the tipping point in how organizations will build out and protect their infrastructures going forward.
Every organization, consciously or unconsciously, views and evaluates new technologies through a lens. In recent years, they have largely evaluated new data center technologies in the context of virtualization and how easily it enabled them to achieve that end. That viewpoint has begun to change. Having largely virtualized their infrastructure, they increasingly view and evaluate new and existing data center technologies through the lens of hyper-converged infrastructures and how well these technologies support and enable the adoption hyper-converged infrastructure platforms in their environment.
Individuals occasionally reach out to DCIG and allege that certain data found in DCIG publications is, from their perspective, “incorrect.” While I appreciate the time and effort that individuals take to review data found in the various DCIG publications and provide feedback on it, viewing any data present in any analyst publication – be it from DCIG or otherwise – as either “right” or wrong” is the larger premise that one should consider. While DCIG always does its best to follow established, internal processes to ensure that the data it publishes reflects the actual capabilities of the products it covers, DCIG’s broader objective is to publish defensible data.
Hyper-converged infrastructure appliances (HCIAs) radically simplify the next generation of data center architectures. Combining and/or virtualizing compute, memory, storage, networking, and data protection functions from a single vendor in a scale-out cluster, these pre-integrated appliances accelerate and simplify infrastructure deployments and management. As such, the stakes are high for Dell EMC and Nutanix who are competing to own this critical piece of data center infrastructure real estate.
Every vendor new to a market generally starts by introducing a product that satisfies a niche to gain a foothold in that market. Comtrade Software exemplified this premise by earlier this year coming to market with its HYCU software that targets the protection of VMs hosted on the Nutanix AHV hypervisor. But to grow in a market, especially in the hyper-competitive virtual machine (VM) data protection space, one must expand to protect all market-leading hypervisors. Comtrade Software’s most recent HYCU release achieves that goal with its new support for VMware ESX.
DCIG is pleased to announce the availability of the DCIG 2018 Deduplication Backup Target Appliance Buyer’s Guide developed from the cloud data protection body of research. The DCIG 2018 Deduplication Backup Target Appliance Buyer’s Guide weights, scores and ranks more than 100 features of twenty-two (22) products from six (6) vendors. Using ranking categories of Recommended, Excellent, and Good this Buyer’s Guide offers much of the information an organization should need to make a highly-informed decision as to which deduplication backup target appliance will suit their needs.
Many organizations view hyper-converged infrastructure appliances (HCIAs) as foundational for the cloud data center architecture of the future. However, as part of an HCIA solution, one must also select a hypervisor to run on this platform. The VMware vSphere and Nutanix AHV hypervisors are two common choices but key differences between them persist.
As human beings we have a proclivity to believe that whatever it is we as an individual or as a society experience, we are the first to go through an event like it. By way of example, corporate IT is undergoing a transformation as enterprises change IT to better align it with the broader business. Ironically, this IT reformation takes place on the 500th anniversary of a more well-known reformation that occurred in 1517.
Hybrid and all-disk arrays still have their place in enterprise data centers but all-flash arrays are “where it’s at” when it comes to hosting and accelerating the performance of production applications. Once reserved only for applications that could cost-justify these arrays, continuing price erosion in the underlying flash media coupled with technologies such as compression and deduplication have put these arrays at a price point within reach of almost any size enterprise. As that occurs, all-flash arrays from Dell EMC XtremIO and Pure Storage are often on the buying short lists for many companies. Those companies considering these two products can turn to a recent DCIG Pocket Analyst Report that compares these two products to help them make an informed buying decision.
DCIG Pocket Analyst Report Compares Dell EMC Data Domain and ExaGrid Product Families
Technology conversations within enterprises increasingly focus on the “data center stack” with an emphasis on cloud enablement. While I agree with this shift in thinking, one can too easily overlook the merits of underlying individual technologies when only considering the “Big Picture”. Such is happening with deduplication technology. A key enabler of enterprise archiving, data protecton, and disaster recovery solutions, vendors such as Dell EMC and ExaGrid deliver deduplication technology in different ways as DCIG’s most recent 4-page Pocket Analyst Report reveals that makes each product family better suited for specific use cases.
2017 might well be the year that backup and recovery went from being viewed as a corporate insurance policy for data to a key business enabler and for good reasons. Natural disasters and ransomware attacks have heightened the need for fast, reliable backups and recoveries while new backup product architectures are changing the conversation around what services that cloud data protection appliances can deliver. As organizations go to select one of the current generation of cloud data protection appliances, here are four considerations they should keep in mind.
Comtrade Software’s release of HYCU backup software a few months ago validated that Nutanix’s impact on the enterprise data center was real as HYCU specifically targets Nutanix environments. But one release does not a product make. That’s what makes Comtrade’s follow-on announcement notable. HYCU’s expanded support for more applications and cloud solutions, addition of new encryption features, and tweaks to more quickly complete backups reflect Comtrade’s commitment to diving deeper into the protection of Nutanix AOS environments.