EMC Data Protection Suite: What’s New in EMC Avamar 7.1

Phil George

Phil George

Avamar/VMware Guru, Data Protection and Availability Division
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.

Last week, as part of our Redefining Data Protection webcast event, we introduced updates across the EMC Data Protection Suite. Lots of great new features to support your organization’s business and IT transformation. Here’s my list of the top 7 new features of EMC Avamar 7.1 as well as a few links to some great demos and whiteboard videos.

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A Strong VSPEX Foundation Is Built On Data Protection!

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!

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!

Sneak Peek at VMware Partner Exchange 2014

Phil George

Phil George

Avamar/VMware Guru, Data Protection and Availability Division
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.

Screen Shot 2014-01-29 at 6.36.53 PM

Lead the Transformation to Master the New Reality

VMware Partner Exchange, “PEX” as partners affectionately call it, kicks off at the Moscone Center in San Francisco on February 10. What is it? Only the premier partner event of the year … when it comes to “everything virtualization.” VMware brings together its technology and business partners for a 4-day exchange of information, and it all begins with Boot Camps.   These daylong intensive sessions enable VMware and its technology partners to share their roadmap, hottest technologies, and solutions, so the business partners can provide the best solutions to their customers. EMC’s Boot Camp (Boot camp ID# 3579-SPO) runs on Monday February 10th from 8:30 – 4:30pm.  For a peek at our agenda, see Chad’s Blog. Be sure to register.

The EMC Data Protection and Availability Division will have a strong presence at PEX, where you can learn about backup and recovery, continuous data protection, and application/data mobility and availability.  EMC provides the most comprehensive data protection continuum for VMware environments of any scale.  Visit us in booth #401 to learn more about Avamar, Data Domain systems, RecoverPoint and VPLEX, and how these solutions are optimized for VMware, VCE Vblock and VSPEX.

Additionally, we will be highlighting the tight integration of VMware vSphere Data Protection (VDP) Advanced and Data Domain systems. Click on this screenshot to watch the demo:

Figure 1: Fast and easy to setup backup with VDP Advanced and Data Domain Systems

We’ll also be discussing EMC VSPEX – The market leader in Integrated Reference Architecture Systems. VSPEX are proven by EMC, packaged and delivered exclusively by our partners. VMware vSphere Data Protection Advanced (VDP Advanced) with EMC Data Domain are now built into VSPEX Private Cloud with VMware vSphere for up to 300 Virtual Machines, and VSPEX Virtualized Solutions for Microsoft SharePoint, Exchange, and SQL Server. Stop by and see how to size and transform your backups with VSPEX & VDP Advanced. A key differentiator for VSPEX is the certified and tightly integrated EMC Data Protection and Availability solutions.

Powered by EMC Backup

There are many more exciting topics, but these are just a few to whet your appetite.

See you at PEX … 

Avamar 7 SP1 is More Than a Service Pack …

Phil George

Phil George

Avamar/VMware Guru, Data Protection and Availability Division
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.

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.

Can You See Azure Clouds on a Clear Day?

Phil George

Phil George

Avamar/VMware Guru, Data Protection and Availability Division
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.

Azure CloudYou would not see them, but they are there. This is exactly how you would like your private cloud to operate – unobtrusively. The recent Microsoft announcements regarding the release of Windows Server 2012 R2, System Center 2012 R2, and Windows Azure Pack got me thinking. How would you comprehensively protect your Microsoft -based private cloud environment? I did not need to look far to find so MANY cool features and benefits from the EMC Data Protection Suite, and how it is optimized for Microsoft applications, Hyper-V and Windows Azure.  Thus, back by popular demand (may just be the voices in my head),

Here are my top 8 reasons why

EMC DataProtection Suite is best for Microsoft

# 1 Centralized Protection for All Microsoft Applications

EMC provides fully featured data protection for Microsoft Exchange, SQL Server, SharePoint, and Hyper-V —leveraging Microsoft standards such as the VSS (Volume Shadow Copy Service) framework. Now you can use industry-leading deduplication—including Data Domain Boost software—to help protect your Microsoft data, all managed seamlessly by the Data Protection Suite.

Centralized Protection for All Microsoft Applications

# 2 Comprehensive Windows Protection

EMC Data Protection provides the industry’s top protection of Windows and Windows Server. This support is fully integrated with Data Domain systems using Client Direct and DD Boost – providing the industry’s leading deduplication. Forever incremental Windows file system backups, Windows block based backup, and optimized backups for Windows Server 2012 deduplicated volumes take backups to new levels of performance and scalability.  EMC Data Protection also offers integrated Windows Bare Metal Recovery (BMR), including from physical to virtual environments, to speed Windows server recoveries when disasters strike.

Comprehensive Windows Protection

# 3 Comprehensive Exchange Protection

Supporting the latest versions of Exchange Server 2007, 2010 and 2013, the Data Protection Suite uses the Exchange VSS writer, so you can complete full storage group, database availability group or database backups. EMC Data Protection Suite provides Exchange Federated backups that dynamically adapt to changes in the Exchange DAG environment and always backup passive databases, resulting in no backup impact to mail operations. Both Avamar and NetWorker provide multi-stream backups to Data Domain systems and take performance to the next level. Believe me – it’s fast! But we all know what’s most important … recovery! Exchange Granular Level Recovery (GLR) allows virtually mounting and browsing of Exchange database savesets for mailbox level recoveries in minutes.

Comprehensive Exchange Protection

# 4 Optimized SQL Server Protection

Attention SQL DBAs … you get better visibility and control of your backups with the Data Protection Suite, and a variety of advanced recovery features. Plus, through integration to the SQL Server Management Studio, you can set priorities for Database Availability Groups. Now SQL database admins have better visibility and control of their SQL Server environment. And backups work on passive databases, thus removing any impact to the active database

Optimized SQL Server Protection

# 5 Full Range of SharePoint Protection

Start with easy setup through wizards that guide you through backup scheduling. For large SharePoint deployments, EMC provides VSS Federated backup – synchronizing across all servers in the farm and leverages variable-length deduplication for the highest efficiencies. The SharePoint VSS interface provides information about a SharePoint farm (including the servers in the farm, and where the configuration, content and search databases, and files are located), thus enabling comprehensive recovery. With SharePoint GLR, backups for entire SharePoint farms can be mounted in seconds to allow data recovery by the SharePoint application owners.

Full Range of SharePoint Protection

# 6 Comprehensive Hyper-V Protection for Microsoft-based Private Clouds

EMC Data Protection Suite provides a full range of backup and recovery services for Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008, 2008 R2, 2012, and 2012 R2.

Comprehensive Hyper-V Protection for Microsoft-based Private Clouds

# 7 Leading support for Hyper-V Cluster Shared Volumes

There is full support for stand-alone Hyper-V servers and also Hyper-V servers in a cluster using Cluster Shared Volumes (CSVs). Support for Hyper-V clusters is ‘federated’, in that backup schedules are set for the entire Hyper-V cluster and the Data Protection Suite will automatically find VMs wherever they are located. We all know they do tend to move around. Hyper-V Proxy Backup means the virtualization administrator can choose which nodes in the Hyper-V cluster are used for backup, which means the performance of the Hyper-V servers hosting virtual machines are not impacted by backup. Our new support for multiple Hyper-V proxies means additional scalability for large Hyper-V deployments. Lastly, Hyper-V GLR means VM backups can be mounted in seconds to allow for file-level recoveries from image backups.  MUST HAVES for Microsoft-based private clouds!

 Leading support for Hyper-V Cluster Shared Volumes

Watch the Whiteboard Video to learn more about Hyper-V Proxies.

# 8 Flexible Recovery

EMC Data Protection Suite provides the ability to recover complete virtual machines to the same Hyper-V Server, an alternate Hyper-V Server, or just recover the virtual machine files to allow the user to manually provision a VM. In the case of a DR recovery of the complete Hyper-V Server, the Data Protection Suite will also recover the Hyper-V Server configuration database files. “Now that was easy.”

Flexible Recovery

EMC and Microsoft have teamed together for more than 15 years to bring our mutual customers a complete, strategic solution that streamlines data protection. We are committed to excellence. I am sure you will see that our alliance continues to be a “suite” relationship … I couldn’t resist ;- )

 Data Protection Suite Top 10 List for Microsoft

Well there you have it, My Top 8 reasons why EMC Data Protection is best for Microsoft  - clear as azure clouds on a clear day. Please visit http://www.emc.com/backup-and-recovery/data-protection-suite/index.htm for more information, and be sure to contact EMC Backup Recovery Systems Specialists.

Follow me on Twitter (@vPhilGeorge) … and let me know your favorite(s) from the list above.