News

11/19/2010
01:28 PM
George Crump
George Crump
Commentary
50%
50%

Server Virtualization's Encapsulation And Its Impact On Backup

In our last entry we discussed how the encapsulation of the millions of files that make up a single server into a single file has changed what we expect from storage and the network infrastructure. The same encapsulation may have an even more dramatic impact on data protection that will fundamentally change the way you protect and recover data. It may also change who the 'go to' data protection vendors a

In our last entry we discussed how the encapsulation of the millions of files that make up a single server into a single file has changed what we expect from storage and the network infrastructure. The same encapsulation may have an even more dramatic impact on data protection that will fundamentally change the way you protect and recover data. It may also change who the 'go to' data protection vendors are in the near future.The difference again as we discussed last entry is now an entire server can be protected by just copying one file to the backup destination instead of millions and millions of files. Further by integrating with the virtualization software via an API like VMware's vStorage API, these backup processes can be further improved. A good example is the ability to have only the changed blocks of a VMDK file sent to the backup application, reducing the amount of data that needs to be sent across the network.

As we discussed in our recent article "VMware Backup: Feature or Platform" the big change and possible challenge for traditional backup vendors is going to be what they do with this encapsulation from a recovery stand point. If all the backup vendor is doing is storing the backup image in their proprietary backup format, then your recovery process is going to be very similar to what it is today. Backup vendors need to re-think that strategy.

Modern backup solutions should expose these backups of encapsulated servers in a way that will allow you direct access to them. If this can it could be a game changer. For example you would be able to start a protected VM directly from the backup storage device, speeding the recovery effort substantially. While the VM might be in a degraded mode when running from the backup device that is better than having the application down while waiting for the data to move across the network. Then with the application back up and running, you could leverage a capability like storage vMotion to move the data to production storage in the background.

Further this type of access to the virtual machine should allow you to launch a secondary copy of the server for testing. You could even use this secondary copy to start an application like Exchange or Sharepoint and recover individual objects like email messages from those data sets. Doing so would eliminate the need for operating specific and application specific agents. This also then does away with the need for separate backup processes to get application level information.

Encapsulation of server data is often an overlooked benefit of server virtualization. The reduction of millions of files to a single file is fundamentally changing the way we manage data. How applications that manage data take advantage of this change is going to determine who the storage management leaders are in the future.

Track us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/storageswiss

Subscribe to our RSS feed.

George Crump is lead analyst of Storage Switzerland, an IT analyst firm focused on the storage and virtualization segments. Find Storage Switzerland's disclosure statement here.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
1.9 Billion Data Records Exposed in First Half of 2017
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  9/20/2017
Get Serious about IoT Security
Derek Manky, Global Security Strategist, Fortinet,  9/20/2017
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
Security Vulnerabilities: The Next Wave
Just when you thought it was safe, researchers have unveiled a new round of IT security flaws. Is your enterprise ready?
Flash Poll
The Dark Reading Security Spending Survey
The Dark Reading Security Spending Survey
Enterprises are spending an unprecedented amount of money on IT security where does it all go? In this survey, Dark Reading polled senior IT management on security budgets and spending plans, and their priorities for the coming year. Download the report and find out what they had to say.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2017-0290
Published: 2017-05-09
NScript in mpengine in Microsoft Malware Protection Engine with Engine Version before 1.1.13704.0, as used in Windows Defender and other products, allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (type confusion and application crash) via crafted JavaScript code within ...

CVE-2016-10369
Published: 2017-05-08
unixsocket.c in lxterminal through 0.3.0 insecurely uses /tmp for a socket file, allowing a local user to cause a denial of service (preventing terminal launch), or possibly have other impact (bypassing terminal access control).

CVE-2016-8202
Published: 2017-05-08
A privilege escalation vulnerability in Brocade Fibre Channel SAN products running Brocade Fabric OS (FOS) releases earlier than v7.4.1d and v8.0.1b could allow an authenticated attacker to elevate the privileges of user accounts accessing the system via command line interface. With affected version...

CVE-2016-8209
Published: 2017-05-08
Improper checks for unusual or exceptional conditions in Brocade NetIron 05.8.00 and later releases up to and including 06.1.00, when the Management Module is continuously scanned on port 22, may allow attackers to cause a denial of service (crash and reload) of the management module.

CVE-2017-0890
Published: 2017-05-08
Nextcloud Server before 11.0.3 is vulnerable to an inadequate escaping leading to a XSS vulnerability in the search module. To be exploitable a user has to write or paste malicious content into the search dialogue.