Organizations of all sizes now look to host some or all of their applications with cloud hosting providers and for good reason.Yet organizations should not assume all cloud hosting providers are created equal. If anything, small and midsized enterprises (SMEs) may be particularly susceptible and even find themselves unnecessarily exposed to unexpected outages or extended periods of downtime if they do not carefully choose their cloud hosting provider.
Backup software has traditionally been one of the stickiest products in organizations of all sizes in art because it has been so painful to deploy and maintain. After all, once it was installed and sort of working, no organization wanted to subject itself to that torture again.
Backup software has traditionally been one of the “stickiest” products in organizations of all sizes in art because it has been so painful to deploy and maintain that, once installed and sort of working, no organization wanted to subject itself to that process again. But in recent years as backup has become easier to install and maintain, swapping it out for another or consolidating multiple backup software solutions down to single one becomes much more plausible. This puts new impetus on backup software providers to introduce new features into their products to keep them relevant and “sticky” in their customer environments longer term.
There is backup and then there is backup. To meet the backup and recovery needs of today’s organizations, they need to verify that the selected backup appliance includes the features needed to protect their environment today and positions them to meet their needs into the foreseeable future. In this third installment of DCIG’s interview with STORServer President Bill Smoldt, he describes the new must-have features that backup appliances must offer.
Just because a backup appliance can back up and recover data to the cloud does not mean they all do so equally well. Further complicating the decision process, some companies back up to their own private cloud while others opt to back up and recover from public clouds. In this second part of my interview series with STORServer’s Jarrett Potts, we examine how backup to public and private clouds differ and what features a backup appliance needs to offer to meet these different requirements.
Backup and the cloud are becoming increasingly linked as they solve two issues that have plagued organizations for years: automating the movement of data offsite and providing a cost-effective means to store it there. But just because one can back up to the cloud does not mean all solutions do so equally well. In this first part of an interview series with STORServer’s Jarrett Potts, we examine what specific features a solution needs to offer to effectively back up to the cloud as well as how the solution needs to be constructed.
Crawl. Walk. Run. That progression pretty well summarizes how most people look to take advantage of cloud service providers over time though, in cloud services terminology, the progression may be better summed up as: Archive, Replicate, Recover. Today I conclude my conversation with American Internet Service’s VP of Network Engineering, Steve Wallace, as we examine how many of AIS’ clients initially get their data into the AIS cloud and then expand their use of AIS cloud services over time.
A convergence is happening in the cloud service provider space. More cloud-based archive and backup providers are evolving to account for transactional/production data while managed service providers want to extend their reach into the archival/backup space. One company at the forefront of this convergence is cloud service provider American Internet Services (AIS). Today I talk with AIS’s VP of Network Engineering, Steve Wallace, about how this convergence is impacting cloud service providers in general and AIS specifically.
Ever since continuous data protection (CDP) was introduced nearly a decade ago, it has largely been a technology looking for a problem to solve. However in the last few years it is finding a home in the most unlikely of places – social media websites. But maybe what is most interesting is that little known R1Soft CDP has emerged as the early and widely recognized leader in this space.
About a month ago I started to put some thought and research into what might emerge as the top trends of 2012 by keeping a notebook next to my keyboard so as ideas struck me I could jot them down. Now as I look at the four trends that made today’s short list, they ended up being on the surface ones that I hear, write and talk about every day.
Using the “cloud” for backup is the primary context in which people think about the cloud when asked about it. Yet if forced to list what features an “enterprise cloud-based backup provider” offers, it is questionable if one could do so. So as DCIG prepares to release its inaugural Buyer’s Guide in 2012 on Enterprise Cloud-based Backup products, one of its first tasks was to define what constitutes an “enterprise cloud-based backup” offering.
You hear the words and phrases repeated in legal offices, data centers, break rooms, and boardrooms: liability, indemnity, retention, regulators, act of discovery, compliance. The discomforting sound of Information Governance contains echoes of cost, complexity, inconvenience, and potential penalties.
Everyone asks, “Is tape dead?” Personally, I think that question is ridiculous. There will always be a demand for tape. The better question is, “How is the tape industry evolving to ensure tape remains relevant as a solution to address current technology trends such as “Big Data,” “the Cloud” and virtualization?” This is the more pressing question regarding tape’s future to which Spectra Logic provided some excellent answers this past week at its first ever analyst and press event.
The recent outage at Amazon Web Services coupled with the news that Iron Mountain is exiting some of its storage cloud lines of business has created quite a stir in the storage industry. But many of the conversations in which I have been involved have centered on how some users have been – consciously or unconsciously – applying enterprise expectations to the services that existing cloud storage providers offer. So the questions becomes, “Who is responsible for creating these unrealisticly high expectations – cloud service providers, users or some combination of both?”
Having come out of the data center and spent many years now as an analyst, it is difficult for me to get overly excited about any new storage technologies that I see at Storage Networking World (SNW.) While these technologies are most certainly “cool,” in the stoic world of storage the odds of them going “hot” are often slim. But at this Spring 2011 SNW, the Nimbus Data Systems S-class and HP Data Protector Instant Recovery look to have above average chances of breaking through.
In the articles, blog entries, case studies and executive white papers that DCIG writes it often uses the terms small and midsize business (SMB,) small and midsize enterprise (SME) and large enterprise. However someone after reading these terms in one of my blog entries called to ask me, “What is the difference between them?”
As part of the early research process for the DCIG 2011 Scale-Out NAS Buyer’s Guide we came to find that trying to do a side-by-side comparison all of the products in the scale-out NAS space was a bit like trying to compare different fruit in a fruit basket. To a certain degree we expected some apples and oranges but we found ourselves with a lot of pineapples, mangos and even an African horned melon or two mixed in. The diversity of how Scale-Out NAS solutions are implemented has provided a unique opportunity for DCIG to step back and re-examine our approach to preparing this Buyer’s Guide with a fresh eye.
As more organizations explore the possibility of moving data into the cloud, the first question they are bound to ask is, “How do we seamlessly move what we already have into the cloud?” No organizations are more concerned with this transparent data movement than service providers and enterprises that have a lot to gain but just as much to lose if problems arise.
In the last few years more backup software vendors have abandoned traditional methods of software licensing that is based upon the total numbers of applications, CPUs, servers or some combination thereof. Instead they switching to a capacity based software licensing model where users get all of their product’s software features and then only pay a monthly or annual fee based upon the total amount of storage capacity consumed.
SMBs are being confronted with some tough choices right now when it comes to backup and recovery. While most want to use disk as their primary backup target, trying to balance recovery time objectives (RTOs), getting their data offsite and still keeping their costs under control makes this a fine line to walk. However an interesting answer to this problem was jointly presented to me last week at SNW by Imation and BDT Products.