Last year we were approached by an Avamar customer looking to take their backup replication in a different direction. They were concerned about the ease of backup data access following the loss and failover of a primary data center location. Through discussions with EMC personnel, spurred along by the EMC Avamar Replication Methods and Optimization Strategies white paper (https://www.emc.com/collateral/software/white-papers/h8245-avamar-replication-wp.pdf), they wanted to implement a continuous root-to-root replication strategy.
Backing up remote sites can be a challenge. Distance, WAN limitations, and ease of access can make ensuring remote data is properly backed up and retained a challenge. The most common issue I see is slow network speeds between a company’s main center of operations and their remote facilities. Aspects such as diverse service providers and an area’s networking infrastructure can make the transmission of data lengthy and unpredictable.
Variable-length deduplication is the process used by EMC’s Avamar and DataDomain backup devices to condense data by removing common segments of data. As the most powerful and efficient way to deduplicate data, compression rates are often much higher than more traditional forms.
VM image level backups to an Avamar grid are one of the most exciting developments in the Avamar world in quite a while. While you were able to accomplish this task in previous versions of Avamar by leveraging VCB snapshots and pre and post scripts in ESX 3.5, it was a more cumbersome task and required a person with some knowledge of scripting and a bit of effort to work out the scheduling kinks. With Avamar 5.0 and the vStorage APIs for Data Protection capabilities in vSphere the game has changed. Not only has the integration of the vStorage API alleviated the need for any scripting, it has also added the ability to perform file level restores from the image level backup.