The Payback from Backup Transformation – Part 2

Lady Backup

Lady Backup

Lady Backup’s career in IT dates back before the time of the Spice Girls. Initially I started in high tech journalism in the US and eventually transitioned to become an industry analyst. My analyst years also coincided with my education – during this period of my life I was working on my MBA. After 7 years of going to school at night, I graduated with distinction with an Information Age MBA degree from Bentley University (at the time it was still Bentley College) located just outside of Boston. With degree in hand, what’s a restless girl to do next? This is where networking with fellow classmates led to a job at EMC. Starting our Hopkinton headquarters, I moved outside of the US with EMC International when I felt it was time for my next change. Today, Lady Backup is an American on the loose in the world. Living outside the United States has been a fascinating experience. For the moment I call England home. But I’m feeling my next wave of restlessness coming. Here are two hints: I love sunshine and I’m improving my Spanish.

Lady Backup continues with Part 2 in looking at a recent IDC analysis that shows the business benefits from backup transformation with EMC.

As we reviewed in Part 1, there is a clear financial benefit from modernizing your dated backup infrastructure with EMC. In fact, companies in a recent analysis from IDC saw a 5-month payback from their investment into EMC.

In total, IDC shows a reduction of nearly $3 million per year in benefit to the business, measured in in three key areas:

  • Hard costs:  More than half, or $1.7 million in annual savings, came from reducing backup infrastructure costs. This includes $627,000 from eliminating tape-related costs and $909,000 from reducing backup storage capacity requirements with deduplication.
  • IT productivity improvements. The IT team is a big winner in this transformation.  On average, 37 hours per week were spent on backup and recovery related issues, including lengthy restores, restarting failed backups, and physically managing tape.  After backup transformation, 9 hours are spent per week on backup and recovery related tasks, a 75% improvement.
  • End user productivity improvements.  In the “before” scenario, users spent an average of 54 hours per year waiting for recoveries.  Doesn’t sound like a lot?  That’s more than a work week of annual productivity wasted.   Now, they wait only a matter of minutes – 13 minutes on average in an entire year, according to IDC.

I’ve included a graphic to show you the distribution in annual cost savings.

ROI Infographic

What does this tell us? It says that a modern backup infrastructure provides better service to the business at less cost.

In the final part, we’ll look at what companies changed in their backup environment.

All of the details about this study can be found on a dedicated Web page.  And we invite you to join the conversation using #IDCROI.  LB

What’s Better? Fast VNX or Fast and Protected VNX?

Guy Churchward

Guy Churchward

President, Data Protection and Availability Division
I'm an enterprise infrastructure hack. Really, if you think of my career as a building, I’ve spent it underneath in the sewer lines and the electric plumbing, making sure things work. Invariably, my businesses end up being called boring. But that’s okay. It means they’re doing exactly what they’re supposed to do, which means their customers can do what they need to do. I come to EMC by way of BEA Systems, NetApp and most recently LogLogic, and my mission is to lead EMC Data Protection and Availability Division's efforts to deliver a protection storage architecture that leaves us all in better shape for the next guy, or gig, that comes along. Oh, and make no mistake about it, I want everyone to know who’s number one in backup, and why.


When I think about the new VNX systems with statistics that tingle the senses and lead the market, I can’t help but draw parallels to Formula One performance racing. It really gets my gear-head juices flowing.

It makes me think about the documentary “Madness on Wheels,” which tells the story of the Class B rally craze in the 1980s. I literally fell in love with the Audi Quattro the instant I saw it bouncing and sliding around the dirt track; the thrill and adrenaline was intoxicating. My love for cars was born.

In the documentary, former Finnish rally driver Juha Kankkunen describes the thirst for more power and massive leaps speed that made the rally courses a hell ride for both drivers and spectators. In 1986, a serious spectator crash at the Rally Portugal and the death of Henri Toivonen at the Tour de Corse led to the end of the racing series. So while performance is unquestionably key, it’s not everything.

Take the Bugatti Veyron. The focus is on its eye-popping top speed of 253 mph and its 0 to 60 time of 2.45 sec. Or the Porsche 991. What’s got us all talking is the impressive .02 seconds it takes to change gears with its PDK gearbox.What doesn’t get as much play is the massive advancement put into safety. Think about this: The Veyron at top speed travels one and a quarter football fields every second and would take you a quarter of a kilometer to arrest from the top speed.

The fact is stuff happens and in motors sports there will always be accidents. The same goes for any sport. Take bikes. There two types of bikers: ones who have fallen off and ones who will fall off.

Formula One is no exception where a fantastic car without a fantastic driver won’t get the job done. Similarly, a fantastic car without fantastic safety precautions won’t protect the car—and importantly—the driver when the inevitable happens. Just look at some of the safety enhancements the Formula One governing body has phased in over the years:

1950s Brakes

1960s Rollover bars, double fire extinguishers

1970s Cockpit redesign for 5-second rescue, headrests and rear headlights, driver medical tests, fireproof clothing

1980s Repositioned fuel tank behind engine and driver, crash tests

1990s Detachable steering wheels, head protection material density increased 4 times, lateral crash tests introduced

2000  Higher impact speeds for crash tests

2002  Larger rear light size

2005  Stricter driver helmet standards

2006  Higher (still) impacts speeds for crash tests

2010  Double diffusers prohibited (to reduce speed of cars)

2010  Rearview mirror placement (for maximum visibility)

2010  Zylon strip on helmet (to reinforce weakest points)

This list isn’t exhaustive but it does illustrate a couple of things:

  • Driver safety is a major concern.
  • The faster the cars go, the more attention the sport gets and the greater the focus on safety.

Now, let’s assume VNX is the car and the driver is the data. You’re going to need a robust data protection strategy to ensure business continuity, data integrity and the ability to restore “when” the unmentionable happens:

  • Hardened helmet: try a PBBA; better still use THE PBBA: Data Domain
  • Flexible cockpit: “in place” shelf upgrades
  • Advanced rearview mirrors and tail lights: the Data Protection Suite
  • Fire-retardant suits and pit crew: seamless data replication
  • Multi-function steering: integration with NDMP, Boost, snapshot management
  • Impact testing: Data Invulnerability architecture

And, yes, I could keep going… but you get the idea.

So, this is why the VNX got my blogger juices flowing, why I am super excited about the new VNX and why I’m even more excited about VNX + EMC Backup. We’re the Yin to the EMC and VNX Yang.

Be safe out there!

App Integrations That Will Make You Want to Sing and Dance!

Alyson Langon

Alyson Langon

A couple years ago, fresh out of Business School at Boston College, I started at EMC and dove head first into all things backup and archive, focusing on Data Domain systems. I love the challenge of communicating complicated technologies in innovative and engaging ways and there is certainly no shortage of inspiration at EMC’s Data Protection and Availability Division. Outside of the tech world, I am an artist, animal lover and sufferer of wanderlust. You can also find me on Twitter achieving the perfect balance of data protection and cat gifs.

Last week on The Backup Window, we talked about the new bigger, better, faster, stronger Data Domain systems. While Caitlin was rocking out to Kanye, I had the cheesy tune “We Go Together” from Grease stuck in my head.  In addition to the new systems, we expanded Data Domain archive storage capabilities and further enhanced application integration. So, Data Domain works better than ever with a variety of data sources and applications, like a perfectly choreographed musical and that’s the way it should be!

Optimized Archive Storage

Data Domain systems are the ideal protection storage platform for backup and archive data and the benefits of consolidating backup and archive are pretty impressive, see for yourself in this white paper and infographic from IDC. Simply put, they go together like rama lama lama da dinga da dinga dong. (I’m pretty sure that’s what Danny and Sandy were referring to.)

With this launch, we’ve enhanced Data Domain systems to support archive environments in two key ways: lowered the $/GB and expanded the ecosystem. First, the significant $/GB savings offered by the new generation of Data Domain systems enables you to leverage Data Domain as a dedicated archive storage platform. Using Data Domain systems for archive storage greatly reduces storage costs while still meeting both US and international compliance regulations.

In addition, we have continued to expand the archive partner ecosystem, with new support for OpenText, an industry leader in content management archiving software and Dell Archive Manager for email archiving. With the newest additions in this release, Data Domain systems now support 20 different archiving applications for file/email, content management, database, and storage tiering use cases. This offers the flexibility to protect your archive data on a Data Domain system with the industry leading application that best fits your needs.

Data Domain Ecosystem


Enhanced Application Integration

Data Domain systems and enterprise applications such as Oracle, SAP as well as backup applications like Avamar, and NetWorker are made for each other like wop baba lumop a wap bam boom and continue to integrate seamlessly with these exciting new updates.

Direct SAP HANA Backup

Data Domain systems now support direct backup from SAP HANA Studio via NFS – enabling SAP HANA DBAs to leverage efficient protection storage while maintaining control of backup processes. Data Domain systems significantly reduce HANA backup storage requirements and provide faster, secure network-efficient for disaster recovery.

Data Domain Boost Enhancements

Here’s the latest Data Domain Boost ecosystem – where we’ve enhanced 3 of our 8 existing integrations – Avamar, NetWorker and Oracle RMAN.

Data Domain Boost Ecosystem

With the latest enhancements to DD Boost for Oracle RMAN, DD Boost can backup Oracle Exadata giving Oracle DBAs the ability to control Data Domain replication with full RMAN catalog awareness. It’s one of a kind like dip dadip dadip doowop da doobee doo!

SAP DBAs who run SAP on an Oracle database can also now leverage DD Boost for RMAN to backup and replicate SAP using BR*Tools. This provides faster, more efficient SAP backup and keeps backup and DR control in the hands of SAP application owners.

With the launch of Avamar 7, DD Boost for Avamar can support all data center use cases with the addition of NAS (via NDMP) and file systems support. In addition, Avamar 7 introduces a new feature called ‘VM Instant Access’, which enables VM images that are backed up with Avamar to Data Domain, to be accessed instantly and run from the Data Domain system. This provides the end user access to a VM in under 2 minutes, enabling access when they cannot wait for a full restore.

In addition, EMC NetWorker 8.1 introduces support for Data Domain Boost over Fibre Channel enabling 50% faster backups in SAN environments. NetWorker has also added support for DD Boost ‘Virtual Synthetic Backups’ for file systems and new feature called “immediate cloning” that improves time-to-DR readiness using NetWorker’s Clone Controlled Replication.

With all of the advancements to Data Domain systems and the Data Protection Suite, you can finally sit back and drive off into the sunset knowing that your data is properly protected.


New Data Domain Systems – Bigger, Better, Faster, Stronger!

Caitlin Gordon

Caitlin Gordon

Data Domain Product Marketing, Data Protection and Availability Division
I have spent the past eight years focused on all things data protection, with a focus on backup and archive. Lucky for me, Data Domain Systems give me lots of good topics to discuss here. When I’m not blogging, I’m equal parts gadget geek and sports freak – always ready to chat about the latest IT rumor or celebrate/lament the latest Boston sports heartbreak/victory. You can also find me talking backup on Twitter and YouTube.

For the past 3 months I’ve had Kanye West’s ‘Stronger’ stuck in my head.  Why?  Because I’ve been preparing to launch new Data Domain systems that are ‘bigger, better, faster and stronger’ and sadly that’s just how my mind works.

Now that we’ve finally launched, I’m thrilled to share the details about the new generation of midrange Data Domain systems we announced last week. The four new systems – the DD2500, DD4200, DD4500 and DD7200 – offer dramatic improvements over the previous generation of midrange systems:

  • Up to 10x bigger with scalability up to 1.7 PB usable capacity
  • Enable better consolidation with up to 3x more streams supported
  • Faster performance with up to 4x the speed
  • Deliver stronger ROI with up to a 38% lower cost per GB

I don’t know about you – but that makes me feel like dancing!  So let’s break it down:

Bigger Scale

All four new systems support the new 3 TB expansion shelves, which provides enough logical capacity to support any midrange enterprise:

  • DD2500: Up to 6.6 PB
  • DD4200: Up to 9.4 PB
  • DD4500: Up to 14.2 PB
  • DD7200: Up to 21.4 PB

Now is the time to get rid of that last stack of tapes by leveraging Data Domain for long-term backup retention.  With DD Extended Retention, you get even more logical capacity:

  • DD4200: Up to 28.4 PB
  • DD4500: Up to 57.0 PB
  • DD7200: Up to 85.6 PB

Better Consolidation

With all that scale – what are you going to protect on Data Domain?  Whatever you want! If you’re a regular reader here, you know that one of the keys to the protection storage architecture is integrating directly with data sources.   And doing so requires more streams since applications are no longer running through a backup server to connect with Data Domain.  With that in mind, these new systems support up to 3x more streams, enabling you to consolidate all data protection workloads (backup, archive, DR) on a single system.

Faster Performance

But, what’s the point of trying to consolidate all that data if you can’t do it within the allotted time?  It should come as no surprise that these systems also offer the performance required to meet the toughest backup windows:

  • DD2500: Up to 13.4 TB/hr
  • DD4200: Up to 22.0 TB/hr
  • DD4500: Up to 22.0 TB/hr
  • DD7200: Up to 26.0 TB/hr

Stronger ROI

Believe it or not – all of that and these new systems are up to 38% more cost effective than the previous generation.   With savings like that, it should be no surprise that IDC recently released this infographic that shows Data Domain systems offer a payback in under 6 months.

To learn more about these new Data Domain systems and to get pricing, visit the EMC Store.

Data Domain systems

The Right Architecture Is Priceless, Part I

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).

Lego Architecture sets are among the greatest inventions of the last decade. My seven-year-old son Connor loves to show off his Lego creations, but my wife doesn’t really appreciate the aesthetic value of a Lego Death Star. Thankfully, Lego solved the problem by creating beautiful reproductions of buildings by Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier and Mies van der Rohe….

As Connor and I constructed the 2000+ piece Robie House, he asked, “If nobody famous lived here, why is this place famous?” I answered, “The architecture. The right architecture is priceless.”

Game-changing Protection Storage Architecture

Building Intentional – Not Accidental – Architectures
Evolving data protection technology and expanding requirements have completely transformed the backup industry. Unfortunately, with such rapid change, many organizations have fallen into the chaos of an accidental architecture. The backup team isn’t solving critical protection performance challenges from the application, virtualization and storage teams, so those teams deploy silos of point products as they deem appropriate. The accidental architecture results.It’s accidental because nobody would intentionally plan for half-dozen unconnected protection tools, no central oversight and no cost controls (Okay, based on their acquisition history, maybe Dell would.).

Customers need to define a protection storage architecture to combat the accidental architecture. This architecture should be composed of loosely coupled modules to minimize vendor lock-in while providing the value of integrated data protection. That way, the backup team can solve immediate challenges while delivering a platform that can evolve with business and technical requirements.

What are the key challenges that the protection architecture needs to address?

  1. Over the next three years, the protection team will be expected to deliver multiple services: disaster recovery, backup and archive.
  2. The protection team must tie together a disparate set of technology components and owners. Virtually every part of IT plays a role in data protection. The application team is the focus because they’re delivering the technology value to the business.  IT infrastructure –virtualization, storage, servers and network – must keep the business applications running. With such a diverse set of people and technology required to deliver a protection solution, it’s no surprise that a data protection administrator survives about as long as a main character in Game of Thrones.

What Is a Protection Storage Architecture?
The protection team must bring together the right people, processes and architecture to transform the technical and organizational complexity into a successful solution. In the past, we’ve talked about the evolution of the protection team and its approach. Now, it’s time to talk to talk technology.Our most successful customers have adopted a protection storage architecture, which consists of three core, loosely coupled modules:

  • Protection Storage: This is the anchor of the architecture. First, protection storage has a unique design center in the storage world: cost-optimized storage with high data durability that can deliver disaster recovery, backup and archive. Second, to avoid creating silos of protection storage, the platform must support multiple protocols (e.g., VTL, NAS, OST and deduplication-aware protocols like Data Domain Boost) and integrate with multiple data sources (applications, hypervisors, storage and backup applications). The right protection storage sets the team down a path of a flexible, reliable, scalable infrastructure for protection. The wrong choice? You’ve seen what happens in the Friday the 13th movies when you take a wrong turn…
  • Data Source Integration: Internal customers want two things from their protection team. First, performance – backup and recovery needs to be fast. Second, they want visibility into the protection of their data. The protection storage architecture leverages both the optimized data flows and user interfaces of the data sources: hypervisor, application and storage. The data sources deliver optimized protection performance because they can track the data as it changes (e.g., VMware Changed Block Tracking, array snapshots)versus trying to figure out what changed after the fact (e.g., traditional backup agent searching through all the data for the changes). The user interface (e.g., vSphere, Oracle RMAN, Unisphere) displays protection status in that team’s preferred, native interface. Data source integration eliminates the two causes of the accidental architecture – performance and visibility. Of course, this integration is available only if you have chosen protection storage that can support these flows.
  • Data Management Services: The protection team delivers value with data management services. Thus far, the architecture eliminates the causes of the accidental architecture, but the protection team needs to add value to convince their customers to adopt their services. What services can they offer? Senior management wants to ensure the protection meets SLAs and compliance regulations… as cost effectively as possible. They need analytics and reports for compliance, policy and infrastructure utilization. Customers want to be able to retrieve any version of any information, easily and quickly. The protection team needs to have a catalog of the company’s information – from local snapshots to backup copies to offsite/cloud copies to their deep archives. By taking on the responsibilities that everybody in the organization deems necessary, but that nobody wants to do, the protection team gains the credibility to consolidate data protection.

Only by bringing together all three modules of the protection storage architecture can the central protection team deliver the services, performance, and visibility that the business and its customers need.

From Blueprint to Reality?
The protection storage architecture is a blueprint to guide the transformation of data protection from the chaos of the accidental architecture to a clean, centralized protection service. Like all blueprints, however, there are two things to remember.

First, like my son’s 2000+ piece Lego set, you’re not going to build the solution in one day; it takes time and patience. Set a journey with key milestones and enjoy the evolution. Second, like a Lego set, you need more detailed descriptions of what to build.

Over the coming series and at EMC World next week, I’ll dive more deeply into each of the architectural components. Your organization will appreciate your streamlined, elegant protection architecture… because, as Mies van der Rohe said of his designs, “Less is more.”