When it comes to the mix of data protection challenges that exist within enterprises today, these companies would love to identify a single product that they can deploy to solve all their challenges. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but that single product solution does not yet exist. That said, enterprises will find a steadily improving ecosystem of products that increasingly work well together to address this challenge with HPE being at the forefront of putting up a big tent that brings these products together and delivers them as a single solution.
“Keep it all” sounds like a great corporate data management strategy on the surface. That is until someone puts in a request to retrieve information needed to satisfy a particular inquiry or the organization is required to bring all data into compliance with some external mandate. Then suddenly the ease of implementing the “Keep it all” strategy is offset by the pains associated with identifying the information needed to fulfill a request or satisfy a specific mandate. Challenges like these are driving companies to implement solutions like CommVault Simpana® Reference Copy to lower today’s Big Data complexities, costs and risks while putting in place the infrastructure that tomorrow’s Big Data analytics tools will need.
The freedom and flexibility to quickly spin up virtual machines (VMs) sounds great on almost every level except one: the worry that IT administrators experience about idle or zombie VMs coming back to haunt them after they are deleted. It is this apprehension maybe more so than any other factor – that leads IT administrators to retain tens, hundreds or even thousands of zombie VMs long after they should have been removed. By taking advantage of the VM Archiving feature found in CommVault Simpana® 10 Service Pack 3 (SP3), organizations can overcome this natural fear while simultaneously reducing VM sprawl and better utilizing available resources.
Anytime, anywhere, any device access to data is highly desirable for enhancing the productivity of an increasingly mobile workforce. But, if left to the end user, this enhanced access can create new headaches for IT and risks for the enterprise which has the responsibility to protect corporate data and comply with externally-imposed data management and eDiscovery requirements. To balance these user and business needs for access with enterprise needs to control data risks, CommVault now gives enterprises the tool they need to control this common problem as part of its most recent “Edge” Simpana release for laptops and desktops.
Identifying who the “best” individual is to handle backup and recovery within an organization has always been at best a crapshoot. The choice usually came down to some arbitrary evaluation of a person’s education, experience, knowledge, skills and their willingness to perform the task which had mixed results. The customer education services, certification program and online learning portal now available from CommVault trains and equips individuals to perform backup and recovery so this task of identifying the “right” person to do the job is a far more quantifiable and defensible process than ever before.
More data, shrinking backup windows and less time for recovery translate into a troubled future for traditional backup. This is why snapshots and replication are being hailed as a way to address these problems for a new future for data protection and recovery. However there is just one small problem with that vision: they add complexity and fail to offer all of backup software’s features. The CommVault IntelliSnap Recovery Manager removes the roadblocks to taking full advantage of hardware snapshots by making the management and recovery of them consistent, practical to implement and easy to manage even as it retains backup software’s key advantages.
It’s no secret that ‘Big Data’ is becoming a ‘Big Problem’ for organizations from a data and storage management perspective. However what organizations may fail to realize is that the best way to solve their Big Data problems is NOT by mindlessly throwing more resources at them. Rather it is to look at Big Data more strategically and then tackle the data management problems it creates in one fell swoop using software like CommVault® Simpana® and its OnePass technology.
Today’s defining characteristics of enterprise backup software are not whether they support VMware backups or use VMware’s APIs for Data Protection (VADP). Those features should be a given. The new hallmarks of enterprise backup software are how well they manage physical and virtual environments from a single console and accelerate and simplify virtual machine (VM) restores. It is these enhancements that users will find natively included with CommVault® Simpana® 9.
Today there are more open system arrays with more features from more vendors from which organizations may choose. Yet what is emerging as an obstacle to organizations considering some of these arrays as viable options is their inability to leverage these snapshot capabilities. That obstacle may be short-lived thanks in part to the CommVault IntelliSnap Connect Program.
“The Cloud” is used in many contexts today though organizations most often associate it with “backup, business continuity, disaster recovery and archiving,” in that order. This puts the onus on organizations to select a solution that does more than just “backup” and which is why they should look for cloud service providers (CSPs) that use CommVault® Simpana® software to meet these emerging cloud-based expectations.
The realization is starting to set in. Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) acknowledge that using VMware they can consolidate their server infrastructures, optimize their hardware resources and expedite the deployment of new applications. If is for this reason that CommVault is introducing a new reference architecture and VMware channel program to help SMBs accelerate and simplify the backup, management and recovery of data even as they deploy VMware in their environments.
Backup redesign continues to be one of the hottest topics among end users for three years running with blog entries on that topic on DCIG’s website consistently being among the most read. The problem is that many backup redesign offerings turn out to be just a rehash of the way backup has always been done which is inadequate when it comes to protecting growing virtual server environments.
Desktop and laptop protection has been at most a blip on the radar screen of IT priorities. But with these devices increasingly being used to store more critical enterprise data, organizations are putting new emphasis on backing up data stored on these devices for reasons ranging from increasing productivity to corporate compliance and data security all the way to business intelligence.
When DCIG released its first ever Virtual Server Backup Software Buyer’s Guide in December 2010, it created some controversy when it became public that CommVault® Simpana® had achieved the highest score and was ranked #1. But just over a month later when another analyst firm Gartner positioned CommVault in its “Leaders” Quadrant for Enterprise Disk-Based Backup/Recovery, the silence was deafening.
A little over a week ago CommVault released the results of a survey of Simpana users on their IT Storage Spending Intentions for 2011. As part of that, CommVault also created a PowerPoint (which I had the opportunity to review) that included more details than its accompanying press release. It was while going over that PowerPoint that I gained some additional insight as to why many of these organizations are able to hold the line on hiring and spending even as they look to introduce needed new features and functionality into their infrastructure.
Back in October 2010, CommVault introduced Simpana 9 but did so in a two-fold manner. It first announced Simpana 9’s core data management features on October 5. Then, a few weeks later on October 19, CommVault introduced Simpana 9’s enhanced information governance capabilities. It was during this latter presentation that a number of statements were made by CommVault’s Senior Director of Information Access Management, Simon Taylor, about Simpana 9’s enhanced information governance capabilities that I asked him to elaborate upon.
2011 is shaping up to be a point of demarcation for how enterprise data is managed and protected. But in making that claim I cannot point to any specific analyst study or market survey to support it. Rather it is my sense that enterprise organizations can no longer ignore or put off their need to better manage, protect and recover their data. So when I see new releases like today’s CommVault® Simpana® 9 and the features that it has packed into it, I see it ushering in the new era of enterprise data management, protection and recovery that these enterprise organizations crave.
Even as interest by small and midsize enterprises (SME) in cloud computing and cloud storage continues to swell, the last thing any SME wants is a solution that introduces more complexity into its environment. Rather solutions are needed that automatically plug into the cloud and take advantage of the features that it offers.
Not that many years ago the debate around how to best deduplicate data centered on inline versus post processing deduplication as data was archived or backed up. While that debate still simmers, a new one is brewing that was spurred in part by the recent announcement that Dell plans to acquire Ocarina Networks.
Substantial technical differences exist between how the interfaces of storage clouds are presented, managed and secured. But from a business point of view, a cloud is a cloud is a cloud and the sooner that the technical challenges associated with managing these different storage clouds from a single platform are overcome, the sooner that businesses can ramp up their cloud storage adoption.