Infrastructure/Networking

Commvault Deepens Ties With NetApp to Automate Data Protection

Commvault has extended its alliance with NetApp to make it possible to recover files nearly instantaneously from an all-flash memory array.

Ranga Rajagopalan, vice president of product management for Commvault, said NetApp Scale-out Data Protection (SDP) from Commvault builds on its backup and recovery software to make it possible to use to NetApp hyperconverged infrastructure in combination with all-flash arrays running StorageGRID object storage software to now recover data stored on-premises or in the cloud.

The on-premises capability is critical because it eliminates potential downtime in the event of a ransomware attack, Rajagopalan said, noting data can be recovered from an all-flash array residing on-premises using a scale-out architecture in a matter of seconds.

At the same time, IT organizations can take advantage of an object storage system from NetApp that is compatible with the S3 application programming interface (API) to store data in the cloud, he added.

Most IT organizations are by now aware the only way to combat ransomware is to be able to access a pristine copy of their data. The challenge they face, however, is finding a way to make that data accessible as fast as possible. It not only takes a significant amount of time to extract data from a cloud service, but it is also expensive. By keeping an organization’s most recent data available in an all-flash array locally, the time to restore data is sharply reduced, said Rajagopalan.

Of course, organizations have been keeping copies of data on magnetic storage systems for years. However, as the cost of all-flash arrays continues to decline it’s now more affordable for organizations to consider employing much faster all-flash arrays to back up and recover their most mission-critical data, he added.

Commvault also makes available application programming interfaces (APIs) through which the whole data protection process can be automated, he said.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, there are two issues that many organizations are now struggling to manage. The first is the need to automate more processes at a time when many organizations will have smaller IT staffs. The number of IT personnel that can be dedicated to manually managing data protection tasks will be fewer during the economic downturn.

At the same time, however, the number of ransomware attacks being launched continues to increase. All it takes is one mistake for an organization to find all its data encrypted. As a result, the relationship between data management and cybersecurity has become much tighter as organizations strive to ensure they always have a pristine copy of their data available.

In the months ahead there is no doubt there will be a lot more focus on the total cost of IT operations. The challenge is, finding a way to reduce those costs must be balanced against the existing commitment to service level agreements (SLAs). The only way to meet those often-conflicting goals is to rely more on IT automation frameworks to make data always available, in a way that requires much less human intervention.

Mike Vizard

Mike Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist with over 25 years of experience. He also contributed to IT Business Edge, Channel Insider, Baseline and a variety of other IT titles. Previously, Vizard was the editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise as well as Editor-in-Chief for CRN and InfoWorld.

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