To play any card game, let’s say Hearts, you need to start with the basics: a deck of cards. But, what if you’re a few cards short? Is it better to go out and buy a whole new deck, or just see what cards you’re missing and replace those from an existing deck?
At the root of SimpliVity’s method for performing backups is a similar concept. SimpliVity backups are not based on traditional snapshot technology. Our backup capabilities are derived from our Data Virtualization Platform, which deduplicates, compresses, and optimizes all data inline, at inception, once and forever, globally. This includes all local and remote backup data.
Offering backup as a core function of the Data Virtualization Platform gives businesses an advantage in disk capacity savings, disk IO savings, and improved bandwith savings by only replicating non-unique data between sites. With all data deduplicated and each VMDK represented by metadata, creating a point-in-time backup becomes a matter of creating a copy of the metadata. Using the metadata, no read or write IOPS have to occur and a complete and independent backup can occur in seconds.
A SimpliVity backup is a fully independent point-in-time backup with no dependencies, other than the metadata and the actual blocks on the disks. This results in more efficient movement of backups, more reliable restores, and less impact on the production environment. The metadata and data are both protected from multiple disk failures and the loss of an entire node.
Let’s return to the idea of playing a game of Hearts without a full deck of cards in the context of your first remote backup. If a full deck of cards represents a VM, it is likely that you already have a sub-set of the cards you need at the remote location. So on first back-up, the Data Virtualization Platform would recognize what cards are needed, say a set of jacks and the six of diamonds, and send only those over.
What does this mean for you? In practical terms, it means you can back up or restore a terabyte VM in seconds. And you can replicate data across geographically distributed sites – for example, between a primary site and a disaster recovery site – in seconds or minutes, with very limited bandwidth consumption.
The built-in data protection capabilities of the SimpliVity solution are often a pleasant surprise for those looking to move their data center into a hyperconverged environment. And more and more people are realizing the benefit of built-in data protection. In fact, IDC found in their April 2016 white paper “SimpliVity Drives Operational Efficiency and Customers are Benefitting” that 90 percent of customers are using the built-in data protection capabilities. In addition, 51 percent of those customers have retired existing third-party backup solutions in favor of SimpliVity’s data protection functionality.