Does Big Data Have to Be Big?

One of my hot button issues these days is Big Data.

By many media and vendor accounts, Big Data is simply that: big data. Large volumes of structured or unstructured data the likes of which are generally associated with companies in data-crunching industries like oil and gas, seismology, genomics and finance.

Even Wikipedia defines Big Data as “the collection of data sets so large and complex that it becomes difficult to process using on-hand database management tools or traditional data processing.” Continue reading

Heidi Biggar

Heidi Biggar

Marketing and IT Consultant, Data Protection and Availability Division at EMC Corporation
I’m often asked how a political science major at Tufts wound up in the IT world, covering backup, storage, virtualization and cloud of all things. Truth is, it’s really a love for learning, a need to understand the “bigger picture” and a desire to share that view with others that’s steered my path over the past 20 years, from campaign manager to editor, analyst and marketer. After hours, you’ll find me hanging with family, running 10ks through Peachtree City’s 90 miles of cart paths, watching football or reading. I’m a New England transplant enjoying life in the South. In my previous life, I also blogged for ComputerWorld, Enterprise Strategy Group and Hitachi Data Systems, but The Backup Window is my baby. It's been great watching it evolve.

The Social Network of Machines, Software-Defined Storage, & the Data Protection Continuum


The Second Machine Age is redefining our relationship with technology. From healthcare to transportation, our lives will be nearly unrecognizable to our children. Underlying this change is the next generation of the social network: a Social Network of Machines. This Social Network of Machines will be a vast infrastructure built on the Third Platform (i.e. mobile, big data, social, cloud) and fueled by near-ubiquitous metadata about machines and humans. Continue reading

Stephen Manley

Stephen Manley

CTO, Data Protection and Availability Division
Over the past 15 years at both EMC and NetApp, I have traveled the world, helping solve backup and recovery challenges - one customer at a time (clearly, I need to optimize my travel arrangements!). My professional mission is to transform data protection so that it accelerates customers’ businesses. I have a passion for helping engineers pursue technical career path(without becoming managers), telling stories about life on the road and NDMP (yes, that’s NDMP).

A Strong VSPEX Foundation Is Built On Data Protection!

Readers of my blogs probably know that I am guilty of spending the odd hour or three in a video game. My latest gaming quest is to work my way up the score ladder on the newly launched “VSPEX: The Simple Way To Deploy Your Cloud” game. As of this posting, I am at 20,000 points and aiming for the leader at 35,000! I will have to make some headway during my flights out to VMware PEX. :)

When first finding out about the game and launching it, I found the scoring mechanics interesting. The points you gain correlate with acquiring components to build a VSPEX solution! If you didn’t notice, the first component required for building a VSPEX in the game is Backup.

As I discuss in the video embedded at the top of this post, Backup is often tossed to the wayside when discussing private cloud deployments. This puts your business at a disadvantage before implementation even starts, and at a greater risk of data loss when not planning data protection proactively. We’ll certainly be elaborating more on this topic with VMware PEX attendees next week in San Francisco.

For those of you that will be heading out to VMware PEX you can take a look at a great preview put together by fellow blogger Phil George here.  If you are specifically interested in our boot camp happening on Monday the 10th, you can also get a detailed agenda on Chad Sakac’s PEX Bootcamp Preview post. As Chad mentions, this boot camp will be epic and will include topics like EMC VSPEX, EMC Data Protection, and other incredible technology that EMC is working on in the coming quarters.

Once you are at the show stop by Booth #401 to see where you land on the top score list! We will have the game live in the booth, and I look forward at attempting to beat the high scores!

Alex Almeida

Alex Almeida

Technology Evangelist, Data Protection and Availability Division
My passion for technology started at an early age and has never stopped. Today, I find myself immersed in data protection. Yep, I live, breathe and tweet backup, availability and archive. In fact, nothing short of fully understanding how things work will keep me from digging deeper. But when I’m not evangelizing on the benefits of backup or technology in general, I can be spotted at a New England Revolution game, behind the lens of a camera or listening to my favorite albums on vinyl. In addition to blogging for The Protection Continuum, you can find me on the EMC Community Network. Also, I'm a member of EMC Elect 2014, and I'm active in the New England VMware User Group (NEVMUG) and the Virtualization Technology User Group (VTUG). Let's get technical!

NAS Control to Major Tom

106380539Given the exponential growth of unstructured file data along with limited IT budgets and staff, the ability to efficiently backup and recover critical data residing on NAS systems can be a real hassle, to say the least. All-too-familiar challenges include:

  • Full and incremental NDMP backups that exceed backup windows
  • Tedious, multi-step recovery methods
  • Failure-prone tape devices that can be difficult to manage
  • Lengthy backups that hinder NAS consolidation and increase costs.

Fortunately, there are things you can do about these problems. As you evaluate the best way to protect your environment, you’ll want to consider the impact of you existing backup infrastructure on performance, time and cost:

  • Performance: Integrated data deduplication can help improve performance, while significantly reducing network and storage costs. Also, single-step data recovery can help eliminate the hassle of restoring the last good full backup along with subsequent incrementals to reach the desired recovery point.
  • Time: By deploying a backup and recovery solution that can span physical and virtual environments across the entire enterprise, you can significantly reduce the amount of time and resources spent managing your infrastructure. This can free up staff and funds for other IT initiatives and projects.
  • Cost: In addition to reducing the amount of data sent across the network and stored to disk during backup operations, backup data can also be asynchronously replicated offsite daily via existing IP networks for disaster recovery. This eliminates the management, cost, and risk associated with shipping tapes offsite, proving you with peace of mind.

So, if you have room for one more New Year’s resolution (it’s never too late, is it?), promise to learn more about EMC Data Protection Solutions. It’s never been easier to quickly and efficiently protect your NAS environment and everything else across the enterprise!


David Garcia
I have been marketing high-tech solutions and gizmos for more than 23 years. Along the way, I’ve held a variety of management roles in marketing, sales and consulting, and have amassed a wealth of storage industry experience, particularly in tape, disk, and deduplication solutions. I earned an MBA from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Business, and am living life in Irvine, California.

EMC Data Protection – Always in Style for VCE

With Cisco Live Europe 2014 picking up steam in Milan, a city known for fine fashion and hi-tech (and at times fashiontech), it’s exciting to be talking about the perfect accessory to the VCE Vblock System – the VCE Data Protection Solution, built from EMC Data Protection and Availability technology. I’m no fashion aficionado, but I do know this: nothing goes better with a converged infrastructure than a matching (integrated and optimized) Data Protection solution.


Milan Hi-Fashion

You’ll never have to worry that your data protection

doesn’t match your Vblock System.

Welcome to the yellow brick road of virtualization and convergence. You have begun the journey of data center transformation to combat the challenges of data growth, spiraling costs, and complexity. You will continue to have to buy more, expensive backup storage to keep pace, while losing a handle on your backup windows, leaving critical data at risk. By integrating and optimizing data protection into your converged infrastructure, you can tame the multi-headed beast of data growth, not only in your primary environment, but in your data protection environment too. 


But you’re not done yet. You may think you have tamed the beast of data growth through convergence. The problem with data growth is that it’s a multi-headed hydra – even if you’ve addressed data growth in your primary infrastructure, you will still be dealing with it in your data protection environment unless you think differently.

“But how do I go about this?” I’m glad you asked. The first thing to do is to put on your ruby red shoes (always in fashion, whatever the season), click your heels together and say – “There’s no Data Protection like EMC” – three times over. The next (and last thing) you will ever have to do is let VCE walk you further down the “virtual” yellow brick road – because VCE can bake in EMC Data Protection with every order of ooey-gooey, converged goodness. Data Protection that’s pre-integrated, pre-tested, and pre-configured – optimized to protect your new investment, worry free.

towards virtualization

VCE Data Protection offers a 3-tiered Data Protection continuum, starting with a strong foundation of backup and recovery. EMC Backup and Recovery software and hardware are optimized for a virtualized, converged environment like VCE. Leveraging efficient deduplication technology, you’ll be able to reduce the time it takes to complete your backups by 90%, sending only changed data across the network to the backup appliance. Not only will you conserve network bandwidth by 99%, but you’re also offloading you backup data from your primary network by implementing a VCE Backup solution. In the end, you’ll see a reduction in backup storage by 10-30x, saving you money while you become master and commander in an ocean of explosive data growth. Finally, with tight integration to VMware vSphere, you’ll be able to not only backup, but also recover, your data and business critical applications – fast. 30x faster than the competition with Changed Block Tracking.

For added Data Protection, VCE offers flexible recovery points with continuous data protection through cross-site replication – this is leveraging EMC RecoverPoint. And, if your environment requires zero data loss and downtime, you can move up the Data Protection continuum and add EMC VPLEX for workload mobility and data availability in the event of an outage.

EMC Data Protection software and hardware offered by VCE are purpose-built to work together and carefully chosen to optimize your converged infrastructure investment. When you purchase your Vblock System, include EMC Data Protection solutions upfront so that you can get a handle on backup data growth once and for all. Don’t just be reactively fashionable – be a pro-active fashion trend-setter with VCE and EMC.

Chandra Jacobs
I love creative and challenging projects in the emerging technology product space. I have a background in tech, innovation, and product development, especially as applied to web and mobile apps in the entrepreneurship arena, but have recently moved into marketing. In my role as a product marketer, I have gravitated toward digital marketing as well as analytics/data mining. It fits well with my techie geek bent as well as my cloud angle on The Backup Window. (Be sure to catch my posts on Innovation Station too!) Outside of work at EMC, I enjoy exploring Boston’s culinary and jazz scene (often in combination), and travel as much as I can (35 countries and counting).