BackDating: The Next Step in Data Recovery



By Nir Peleg for Beyond The Blocks - Thursday, November 12, 2015

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The proliferation of digital services, mobile devices and Internet of Things (IoT) devices are causing today’s data centers to overflow with information, applications and databases. Traditional disk and tape data storage technologies are simply not equipped to deal with this deluge of data, or meet the speed, capacity and recovery demands that today’s digital economy places on the modern datacenter.

Data recovery, in particular, is behind the times. The primary tool used to recover data and applications today are snapshots. While cutting-edge when they were introduced 20 years ago, today this technology is practically archaic.

  • Snapshots require scheduling.
  • They soak up a significant amount of system resources.
  • And they only allow you to recover data at the specific points in time during which you have created a snapshot.

Today’s DVRs allow you to go back to any point of time of a football game or Game of Thrones episode, so you never have to miss a score or a Tyrion Lannister’s wise crack. Shouldn’t your data recovery tools be able to do the same?

Yet, if snapshots are so unsuited for today’s data recovery problems, why have they not already been replaced?

The reason is inertia, which comes as a result of snapshots’ own success. When NetApp introduced snapshots they became a feature that every enterprise storage vendor needed to have. Having established themselves as the standard for data recovery, replacing them now requires companies to start from scratch and reimagine this process from the ground up. Most storage companies, unwilling to rock the boat, are not interested in doing that.

We are.

When we founded Reduxio, we decided to build a new type of data storage technology.

  • A technology that would allow you to recover your data on a second-by-second basis, rather than settle for the discretely scheduled snapshots that are the norm today.
  • A technology that would not place your data at risk because you only had a limited number of data recovery points.
  • A technology that would not require you to waste time managing and administrating snapshots.
  • Finally, we wanted a technology that would enable you to restore a database or application instantaneously with zero overhead.

Working from a blank slate we developed BackDating, enabling people to recover data from any second back in time with no upfront planning or data copy. Our BackDating technology embeds data protection into the data storage system, leaving out the management overhead typically required by snapshots or other recovery solutions. Snapshots need to be maintained, and therefore need administrators to spend time managing them. BackDating does not create any manageable entities until you actually need to recover data from a specific point in time, and therefore does not require you to spend any time managing them.

With BackDating, when a disaster occurs (and, at some point, it will – whether it is your applications, a human error, or a massive data loss), you can just rewind a volume or any set of volumes to any second in the past. The restoration of the database or application is instantaneous. Additionally, there aren’t any worries about dependencies among volumes used by the same application or database. All volumes are consistent with each other at any point in time. Application consistency is also a mainstay of BackDating, with all major apps recoverable to any second in the past. Complementary to one-second recovery points, significant application timestamps can be marked as such using a feature we call bookmarks. Though not more than a label, these bookmarks enable high-frequency application-aware backup points.

BackDating, just like the DVR in your living room, is always on and constantly tracking your applications’ and databases’ history. Unlike snapshots, it does not need to be scheduled, reducing the chance of user error. In addition, BackDating allows you to clone from any second in time, helping you secure specific versions of applications and data for development and testing. BackDating also works in cross-volume environments so that the same timestamp is inherently consistent with no configuration.

BackDating plays well with others, supporting the recovery and cloning of platforms and applications from VMware and Microsoft. Our storage management console for VMware virtualized infrastructure provides integrated configuration and datastore recovery. Our storage manager also has native support for Microsoft backup application using a Reduxio VSS provider integrated with BackDating.

So, what does a future without snapshots look like?

  • It is one where storage administrators no longer have to spend time scheduling and managing snapshots.
  • It is one where key changes to applications and databases are no longer lost because a snapshot was not scheduled at the right time.
  • It is one where storage administrators’ lives are simplified, and they are able to focus more on solving the higher-level (and more interesting) problems confronting their enterprises.
  • And it is one where data recovery no longer lives in the past, and is instead ready to meet the challenges of today’s ultrafast, hyper-connected, and always-on digital age.

The time has come for instantaneous data recovery from any second in the past with no upfront setup or tedious administration – and Reduxio is making this change happen.

 

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Nir Peleg

Written by Nir Peleg

Realizing that major shifts in the IT industry - cloud computing, Flash and mobile require new technology, Nir founded Reduxio, and architected its groundbreaking core technology. He is responsible for the company's strategic roadmap and its intellectual property management. Nir is an accomplished high-technology industry executive and visionary, with over 30 years of experience.



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