May 242016
How many copies do I need?

So you’ve got your primary data stored on one array and it replicates to another array. How many backup copies do you need? There’s no doubt we’re spawning more and more copies and pseudo-copies of our data. So much so that EMC’s new Enterprise Copy Data Management (eCDM) product was announced at EMC World. (For details on that, check […]

May 112016
Basics: Recovering Data Backed up over NFS

Backing up data from an NFS mount-point is not ideal, but sometimes we don’t have a choice. There’s a few reasons you might end up in this situation – you might need to backup data on a particularly old system that no longer has a NetWorker client available (or perhaps never did), or you might need to backup a […]

Apr 182016
Data Domain in 30 Minutes Or Less

I’ve been working my way through a pretty intense cold the last few days. To avoid spending the entire weekend playing Minecraft while I convalesce, I downloaded the newly released Data Domain Virtual Edition to start refreshing my lab. With DDVE including a performance tester, I was curious to see what my current lab setup would yield. (Until I […]

The Importance of Being Earnestly Automated

 Architecture, Best Practice, General Technology  Comments Off on The Importance of Being Earnestly Automated
Apr 132016
The Importance of Being Earnestly Automated

It was not long after I started in IT that I got the most important advice of my career. It came from a senior Unix system administrator in the team I’d just joined, and it shaped my career. In just eight words it stated the purpose of the system administrator, and I think IT as a whole: The best system administrator […]

Apr 092016
Data Domain Goes Virtual

This week was a big one for the data protection industry, with the official release of Data Domain Virtual Edition (DDVE). DDVE offers the same deduplication capabilities as its physical cousin, encapsulated in a virtual machine. On release it can scale up to 16TB of pre-dedupe storage (i.e., the size of the VMDK you can allocate for it to use […]

Mar 302016
NetWorker 8.2 SP3

At the start of the week we saw NetWorker 8.2 SP3 released. Now, you might think given NetWorker 9 is out there’s no new features in NetWorker 8.2 SP3, but you’d be wrong. NetWorker 9 is a jump – it’s a change of processes and it’s a new way of going about configuring your backups. I’m seeing more details every […]

Mar 092016
Who should handle your database backups?

I’ve been working with backups for 20 years, and if there’s been one constant in 20 years I’d say that application owners (i.e., DBAs) have traditionally been reluctant to have other people (i.e., backup administrators) in control of the backup process for their databases. This leads to some environments where the DBAs maintain control of their backups, and others […]

Mar 022016
2015 NetWorker Usage Report

The NetWorker usage survey for 2015 saw 140 respondents across all geographic regions, and provided some excellent details on continuing trends, as well as picking up on some new correlations – such as the likelihood of using deduplication when compared to the overall number of clients being protected. Here’s an example of one of the trends we’re seeing: the platform of […]

Client Load: Filesystem and Database Backups

 Backup theory, Best Practice, Databases  Comments Off on Client Load: Filesystem and Database Backups
Feb 032016
Client Load: Filesystem and Database Backups

A question I get asked periodically is “can I backup my filesystem and database at the same time?” As is often the case, the answer is: “it depends”. Or, to put it another way: it depends on what the specific client can handle at the time. For the most part, backup products have a fairly basic […]

Data isn’t data isn’t data

 Architecture  Comments Off on Data isn’t data isn’t data
Jan 182016
Data isn't data isn't data

An integral part of effective data protection is data awareness. You can’t adequately protect what you don’t know about, but similarly, you can’t adequately protect what you don’t understand, either. Understanding what sort of data you have is critical to understanding how you can protect it – and even more so from a business perspective, how […]