From disaster to inconvenience — Zerto adds near-instant ransomware restore

Disaster recovery specialist Zerto aims to deal with the corporate data cancer of ransomware by providing automated virtual machine protection, with restoration within seconds of an attack.

Version 9.0 of its software builds on its continuous data protection technology by adding improved backup and cloud tiering for archive data.

Deepak Verma, Product Management VP for Zerto, issued an announcement: “Zerto 9 enables organizations to defend their business from the consequences of ransomware. And with fully orchestrated failover and failback, organizations can recover infected applications and data from just seconds back. With just a few clicks, our journal-based recovery is flexible enough to recover only what is needed — whether that’s files, virtual machines, or an entire application stack from a point in time.”

V9.0 also provides:

  • Immutability and automation features;
  • Enhanced cloud data management and protection capabilities for end users and managed service providers; 
  • Backup capabilities with support for additional cloud platforms;
  • Cloud tiering for archive storage.

The instant restore feature means users can restore VMs straight into production without having to fail over to a DR site first. Version 9’s preservation of journal checkpoints allows users to revert to other points in time for the same VM if the selected restore point does not meet requirements.

Zerto 9 can restore files or directories by downloading them or by restoring them directly into their original location from any long-term retention (LTR) repository such as public cloud.

With cloud tiering, long-term retention data can be stored on S3-compatible on-premises or cloud storage such as Cloudian. Users can also tier LTR data to Amazon S3-IA and S3 Glacier, Azure Blob Cool and Archive storage classes by defining retention policies. Native cloud APIs to tier backups are used to eliminate compute costs associated with tiering data in public cloud.

Backup is managed within its own separate context within the user interface of version 9. A new type of virtual protection group (VPG) called local continuous backup VPG enables configuration and management of continuous data protection (CDP)-based backups and long-term retention of VMs. It provides users with the ability to segregate less critical VMs, which require only backup and restore from the critical VMs that need full Zerto disaster recovery features.

Basically, Zerto claims version 9 enables customers to move on from a ransomware attack with minimal data loss and downtime, by allowing users to rewind and recover data with granularity from any point in time — and do so within seconds of a disruptive event. 

If true, this could transform ransomware attacks from a disaster to a minor inconvenience — an ability that would make Zerto even more attractive to acquirer HPE.