Backup for a minute and scan this data protection news

A constant of life is that data protection products are always getting better.

Five recent data protection news stories exemplify this, with Acronis, Exagrid, Unitrends and Spectra Logic in two cases improving products and operations.

Acronis backup capability additions

Acronis has updated Acronis Backup, introducing physical data shipping, cross-platform virtual machine conversion, protection from crypto-mining malware, and localisation to seven additional languages.

The feature list includes;:

  • Physical data shipping: Ability to protect large amounts of data by sending encrypted versions of full backups to an Acronis data on a hard drive.
  • Extended scalability: Manage up to 8,000 devices from a single management server.
  • Enhanced user experience: Organise, group and filter devices via a new comment feature, and schedule backups through a new performance and backup window.
  • Localisation to seven additional languages: Bulgarian, Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, Serbian, Malay, Indonesian.
  • Improved Active Protection: Detection of crypto-mining malware, protection of network folders mapped as local drives.
  • Cross-platform conversion: Ability to convert backup files into VM files (VHDX, VMDK formats ready) capable of running on VMware Workstation and Microsoft Hyper-V hypervisors.
  • Support for additional operating systems and hypervisors: Microsoft Exchange Server 2019, Windows Server 2019 with Hyper-V, Hyper-V Server 2019, Windows XP SP1 (x64), SP2 (x64), (x86), VMware vSphere 6.7 update 1, Citrix XenServer 7.6, RHEL 7.6, Ubuntu 18.10, Fedora 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, Debian 9.5, 9.6,

You can get a 30-day trial of the new software here.

Acronis said achieved 20 per cent YoY net billing growth in 2018 and 160 per cent cloud business growth. It hired 400 additional employees, Including more than 100 in new R&D offices in Tempe, Arizona and Sofia, Bulgaria. It hopes growth will accelerate throughout 2019.

Exagrid on a roll

Exagrid ships globally deduping to disk backup target arrays and has added integrations with Veeam Software and Zerto (for disaster recovery. The firm’s arrays can sit behind Commvault deduplication software and, it claims, deduplicate Commvault data by an additional 3X.

It is also working with HYCU to receive backup data Nutanix ESXi and AHV systems.

CEO Bill Andrews says Exagrid’s deduplication is so good that over 80 per cent ExaGrid’s newly-acquired customers are replacing Dell EMC Data Domain, HPE StoreOnce, and the Veritas NetBackup 5200/5300 series of appliances. These customers get faster backups, restores, and VM boots with the Exagrid kit.  

Exagrid says it has had its best-ever first quarter for bookings and revenue. This is good news as it has recently expanded the number of offices worldwide and headcount.

Spectra Logic adds Ethernet access to tape libraries and 2EB library capability

Spectra Logic, the tape Library and protection array vendor, now offers Spectra Swarm, which adds Ethernet connectivity to its LTO tape libraries.

The company said Fibre Channel continues to be fully available across all Spectra tape libraries, but it is frequently being obsoleted in modern data centres.

SAS tape drives, and in particular half-height SAS drives, provide a significant cost savings, allowing the addition of more drives for the same price, but SAS is not normally viable for connections beyond a single rack.

Spectra Swarm uses a backbone 40GbitE RoCE (RDMA over Converged Ethernet) or iSCSI connection that is then locally switched to multiple SAS-connected LTO drives. This makes it easier to replace Fibre Channel and accommodates half-height SAS tape drives.

Both are cost savers. Customers could take that cost-saving and add more drives to a library to speed performance with no overall cost increase.

Spectra has also added built-in BlueScale encryption and key management. Spectra Swarm will be available in July.

Diving for BlackPearls

BlackPearl is a Spectra object storage gateway device that can act as front end to tape, disk and public cloud stores. Until now, Spectra partner software was responsible for moving data from production data to the BlackPearl system as a diagram shows:

Spectra has added RioBroker data-moving front end software which runs in a server connected to BlackPearl and offloads the data transfer job from the application to the Spectra RioBroker system. This adds greater performance, parallelism, scalability, ease of implementation and consistency to the BlackPearl platform. 

RioBroker schematic

The RioBroker software package is designed as an interface layer with a RESTful file transfer API that intelligently manages jobs in BlackPearl.

The firm says RioBroker support means:

  • Easier client development for partners with a simple abstraction layer over the BlackPearl interface 
  • More clients and applications can share BlackPearl object storage resources in parallel at higher performance
  • Remote input/output capabilities to multiple Spectra BlackPearl Converged Storage servers
  • Brokers data stream input and output between multiple sources and destinations
  • Support for high availability
  • Supports even higher performance with clustering capabilities
Higher performance with multiple RioBroker agents

RioBroker brings Partial File Recall and File Transfer Protocol (FTP) capabilities to BlackPearl. It is is available now. You can find out more information here.

Unitrends uplifts recovery capability

Kaseya-owned Unitrends has launched Recovery Series MAX appliances and claim they represent an entire data recovery environment. The systems are intended for organisations that lack local recovery infrastructure and must run through a remote recovery procedure when a local outage occurs.

Recovery Series MAX provides data protection and recovery software, and has extra CPU power and block agent recovery to enable on-the-box recovery and hosting of failed applications on site.

The three appliances range in size from 1TB through 4TB to 8TB of usable capacity, and feature Xeon D-1541 processors, built-in, dual 1GB and 10GB Ethernet ports, 128GB SSD cards, and 32 or 64GB of memory. 

They come with automatic ransomware detection, WAN optimisation, global adoptive deduplication, encryption and bandwidth throttling, proactive analytics, self-healing hardware, and 24X7 support coverage.

They are available under either the Unitrends or Unitrends MSP brands.