#the12daysofblogmas: The Countdown Begins Dec 12!

What a year’s it’s been on The Backup Window!

We’ve grown our readership to nearly 60,000 visitors, posted more than 100 blogs, welcomed Guy Churchward (@guychurchward) to our blogging team, and enhanced our coverage to provide you with bigger, better coverage of the technology, trends and solutions that promise to re-shape the industry, and your business. Plus, with the addition of Guy’s “know yourself” blogs, Stephen’s ongoing technology mini-series, and my new CxO focus, we hope we gave you more than one opportunity to stop, reflect and even re-evaluate your course of action. I know I have.

To close the year, we have decided to re-air 12 of this year’s most popular blogs, as indicated by you! We hope you follow the #12daysofblogmas here and on twitter @EMCBackup.

The countdown begins Wednesday, December 12.

Happy holidays!

P.S. Any guesses on what the first blog will be? Tweet me @biggarhb.

tbw 3

Part of he #the12daysofblogmas series, 2013.

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.

IDGTechTalk #BackupToLead Twitter Chat – Thursday, Dec 12, 1PM ET

IDG Tech Talk
How is your business handling data protection? Do you see backup and archive operations as costs centers or business enablers? We’ll be discussing these topics and more  (see list of questions below) this Thursday at 1PM ET for the inaugural IDGTech #BackupToLead Twitter Chat. So, come, share your thoughts and opinions.

You can join the chat by searching for the hashtag #BackupToLead on Twitter.com or Tweetdeck or your favorite Twitter client. You can also follow along at Tweetchat.com or twubs.com. Oh, and don’t forget to follow us @EMCBackup and check out out our new eBook: bit.ly/1ar001W.

Let’s have some fun!

Q1. What’s driving your data backup strategy?

Q2. New IT survey shows a “trust” gap between IT and business leaders. Is this a trend you see?

Q3. New IT survey shows 73% have “accidental architectures.” That means most of you. Agree?

Q4. Complete the sentence: If I could change one thing with my data protection today it would be…?

Q5. Looking for examples: tell us about a time when data protection slowed down your business…

Q6. Looking for examples, part 2: tell us about a time when data protection sped up your business…

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.

It’s Not Too Late: How to Build Trust in Your IT Organization

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The more trust that can be earned and guaranteed, the bigger and faster the impact of these trends [cloud computing, big data, mobile devices and social networking]. Conversely, the less trust that is established, the more limited these trends will be.—Joseph Tucci.

Behind every successful business is a trusted IT organization.

But what does a trusted IT organization look like? Can trust be earned and, if so, how? What types of technologies and practices do trusted IT organizations leverage? How do they interface with business teams? How do business benefits translate into trust? All great questions.

Our recent Global IT Trust survey provides some insight. It tells us that maturity is generally a very good barometer of trust (i.e., the more mature, the higher the trust) and that business confidence in specific areas like data protection, security and availability increases significantly with each of level of maturity.

Further, as I mentioned in last post, the survey finds that businesses are far more likely to engage in strategic IT initiatives, such as Big Data analytics, when they have a high level of trust in their IT organizations.

And it shows that there’s a direct link between confidence and investment, meaning organizations with higher trust in IT are more likely to have increased IT spend than those with lower trust.

Where does your organization fall on the Trust Curve? To find out more, go to www.emc.com/trustcurve.

But what are IT organizations doing to earn or increase trust?

If you’ve been following us for the past year or more,  you know the answer lies with transformation. IT organizations looking to improve their trust factor are re-thinking the role of data protection within and to their organizations, and they’re re-architecting their data protection environments with the bigger business picture in mind. They’re communicating with business peers. They’re thinking as internal service providers.

Our own Stephen Manley  walked us through the backup transformation process in his “The Right Architecture Is Priceless” series, but I wanted to end the year with two more helpful resources. The first is a new IDC White Paper; the second a new, bigger, badder eBook.

The paper includes three (short) case studies, the results of an ROI analysis and its perspective on the challenges and opportunities facing businesses today. The eBook is really the culmination of our journey this year. It addresses everything from combatting the accidental architecture, to transforming your backup infrastructure, to improving application performance, to arming yourself with stats to bring to your management team.

Consider them my  present to you. Happy holidays!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.

Avamar 7 SP1 is More Than a Service Pack …

It’s a Cornucopia of Backup and Recovery Goodness

Avamar Cornucopia

As we come into the holiday season, it’s a time to be generous and thankful.  EMC has certainly taken this to heart, as they have been the generous ones providing a cornucopia of capabilities in the latest release. I know we are all thankful this season for so many things, and I am certainly thankful for being part of the industry’s very best deduplication backup software and system team. So let’s take a peek into the basket.

Avamar 7 SP1, a key component of the Data Protection Suite, provides full support for VMware vSphere 5.5. Of course this means that you get the fastest backups with variable length deduplication, proxy load balancing and multi-streaming, along with the fastest recoveries leveraging Changed Block Tracking on restore, and so much more!

Moving from one hypervisor to another, Microsoft Hyper-V 2012 R2 is supported, plus Avamar 7 SP1 provides up to 5x faster backups through multiple backup proxies.  Don’t forget, Avamar also delivers federated backups in Cluster Shared Volumes.

While on the topic of Microsoft, the latest releases of Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2 and SQL Server (on 2012 R2) are now supported.

Hey Mac Users, we have just released support for OS X 10.9 (‘Mavericks’… sounds much cooler).  So if you are on the latest MacBook, be sure your company is using the best laptop backup solution (Avamar 7) for the enterprise!

There is a whole “bunch” of other updates to operating system support provided by Avamar 7 SP1, so be sure to read the Software Compatibility Guide.

And for the last piece of fruit in this basket, let’s talk Bare Metal Recovery (BMR).  Avamar 7 SP1 provides enhancements across the spectrum with Windows BMR supported on Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows 8.1. And yes, now you can do a Bare Metal Recovery from Physical to Virtual (Hyper-V VMs) in addition to vSphere VMs.

Take a few minutes to watch Alex Almeida’s demonstration of EMC Avamar 7 SP1 backup and recovery for Microsoft Hyper-V VMs that are part of an Azure private cloud:

demonstration of EMC Avamar 7 SP1 backup and recovery for Microsoft Hyper-V VMs

Demonstration video shows centralized protection for Microsoft Azure private cloud VMs through the EMC Data Protection Suite (EMC Avamar 7 SP1).

Well there you have it, just one more thing to be thankful for this year: Optimized backup and recovery for Azure Private Cloud VMs. For more information, please read my last BLOG on the EMC Data Protection Suite for Microsoft and @DavenportSherry ‘s BLOG More Than Microsoft Support – EMC NetWorker 8.1 SP1.

From the EMC Family to Yours … Happy Thanksgiving.

Phil George

Phil George

Sr. Product Marketing Manager, Data Protection and Availability Division at EMC
Working with customers and partners (like VMware) to develop leading backup solutions makes every day very interesting; helping them optimize their backup architectures for virtualized environments is what really energizes me. Over the past 25 years, I’ve held senior engineering, marketing and sales roles within the technical software industry. This gives me a good vantage point to recognize technical challenges, see emerging trends and propose new solutions. I hold a BSEE from Cornell University and a Masters in Computer Engineering from Boston University. I currently reside with my wife and two children in Massachusetts.

11/22/2013: When Data Center Tech Entered The Living Room

Xbox One-AlmeidaThis will come as no surprise for those of you who have been following my twitter feed these past few weeks, I am obsessed with the launch of Microsoft’s Xbox One! The Video Game entertainment industry is exploding! Recent gaming releases have raked in revenue that rivals the biggest Hollywood blockbuster ticket sales. So, it’s no surprise that the level of investment entertainment companies continue to make in games is increasing.

While which gaming system to get is a religious war to a lot of folks, I think whether you go with Sony’s Playstation 4 or Microsoft’s Xbox One, you are walking into a world that quite frankly will raise the bar when it comes to the immersion level in these games. Case in point, the ability for game developers to leverage APIs that can talk to an app on your smartphone to actually call you. That’s right, your virtual smartphone rings in the game, and the smartphone sitting next to you rings!

So aside from resolution up-scaling controversies, and number of “pixel shader” unit debates, there are a lot more subtle aspects which I feel are crucial to making this new generation of video game entertainment great.

What excites me more about Xbox One, is what is under the covers, and where the underlying technology Microsoft is using originated. It came from Microsoft’s Windows Hyper-V and Windows Azure components. One can think of it this way, essentially there are pieces of enterprise data center technology sitting next to your television. I’ll even stretch the definition and say that it could be considered a mini Hybrid Cloud!

So what on earth am I talking about? Well, as demonstrated, the Xbox One can quickly and seamlessly switch between various entertainment modes. You can go from driving the Lotus E21 Formula One Car in Forza Motorsport 5, to watching ESPN live through your cable provider in seconds. Then, if you decide, you can switch to Netflix in seconds all while the video game and ESPN keep running in the background. So what is the enabling technology enabling this feature? It’s Hyper-V, arguably making the Xbox One a mini private cloud.

Now, you aren’t running a full blown implementation of Windows Server 2012 R2 with Windows Azure Pack inside of the box, but rather through intelligent code re-use, the ability to run 3 different OSes simultaneously on the Xbox One hardware is clearly where using Hyper-V technology makes sense.

Xbox-live-logo-2013

So where is the “public cloud” component of my hybrid cloud statement? Well it’s essentially Xbox Live, Microsoft’s online gaming platform.  It isn’t a secret that Xbox Live is leveraging Microsoft’s Azure public cloud infrastructure. According to Microsoft Xbox Live utilizes 300,000 servers globally deployed in Azure. Leveraging Xbox Live services in the cloud, compute power of the Xbox One doesn’t stop at the console hardware.

Windows Azure LogoJust like in an enterprise data center, you can augment the processing power available to you by leveraging public cloud resources. In the case of Xbox game developers coding to the Azure Development Platform, they now have the power of programming in-game capabilities that can off-load certain compute functions to the public cloud. This is where the possibilities can be limitless.

Launches like this only come around every 7=10 years. But this particular console refresh cycle to me is different and more exciting since I am seeing enterprise technology that I directly work with in my day job not simply making people productive, but bring fun and joy to life as well.

Happy Gaming!

Read More at ExposingTech.com

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!