A new approach to protecting data: Time Addressable Storage.Forget backup. For nearly five decades, the data storage industry has been focused on the wrong issue. Making, storing, and managing frozen copies of data is a futile waste of time, energy and money. Everyone knows it, so I'll be courageous enough to say it--backup sucks! It literally sucks time, resources and incredible amounts of money out of the IT budget. And, the truly frightening reality (in this age of enlightened ROI (Return On Investment) The monetary benefits derived from having spent money on developing or revising a system. In the IT world, there are more ways to compute ROI than Carter has liver pills (and for those of you who never heard of that expression, it means a lot). ) is that backup adds no value to a business enterprise--none, nada, zilch.
Since backup is so bad, it has now become fashionable in IT cognoscenti co·gno·scen·te
n. pl. co·gno·scen·ti
A person with superior, usually specialized knowledge or highly refined taste; a connoisseur. circles to say we are focusing on restore--not backup. This deflects the focus from our futile efforts at making single-point-in-time (SPIT) copies to the more acceptable effort of actually restoring and recovering from data loss. After all, isn't our ability to restore really what all this data protection buzz is really all about anyway? Unfortunately, restoring data from last night's backup won't get your applications back on line fast enough--too much data has changed in the last two hours. Heck heck
Used as a mild oath.
Used as an intensive: had a heck of a lot of money; was crowded as heck.
[Alteration of hell. , too much has changed in the last two minutes! No, it's not all about restore either ...
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Time is Money ... and You Don't Have Enough of Either to Waste Time with SPIT
Regardless of how you make and store backups--disk to disk, disk to tape, disk to disk to tape, disk to disk to disk(!?)--if you rely on SPIT images as the core of your data protection strategy, you face a multitude of problems when bad stuff happens to your data--and we all know, bad stuff will happen.
If your data protection strategy centers on performing standard backups at midnight--and statistically it probably does--then you're risking up to 24 hours of data loss. If you're among the few who use periodic snapshots or mirror-splits, your risk of losing 6 to 12 hours of data is still very real.
One solution might be to make more copies, more frequently. So, instead of daily back- ups, you might back up every 4 or 6 hours, creating a smaller window of potential loss. Traditional single-point-in-time backups take hours and, in many instances, critical business applications are offline or severely impacted during this "backup window." You might try to snap a SPIT of your data every fifteen minutes using one of the newer generations of snapshot (1) A saved copy of memory including the contents of all memory bytes, hardware registers and status indicators. It is periodically taken in order to restore the system in the event of failure.
(2) A saved copy of a file before it is updated. solutions. But, what a nightmare! Imagine the complexity and cost of making and managing over 100 copies of your data everyday. Who has time?
Sure, you understand the very real danger of data loss, but you have to weigh that risk against the cost of making and managing SPIT images.
In the end, creating and storing single-point-in-time images costs U.S. businesses billions of dollars in both downtime The time during which a computer is not functioning due to hardware, operating system or application program failure. and hard costs, including thousands of expendable tape cartridges See cartridge. each year. And, we are still left with high degrees of risk.
Time Addressable Reachable. When something is addressable, it can be identified and manipulated independently of its surroundings. For example, screen pixels and RAM memory are addressable. Each of the screen's picture elements can be individually turned on and off, and each of the memory's bytes can be Storage
Time Addressable Storage (TAS TAS
1. telephone answering system
2. true airspeed ) is a new class of storage that instantly recreates data exactly as it existed at any previous point in time, ensuring rapid application recovery and timely resumption RESUMPTION. To reassume; to promise again; as, the resumption of payment of specie by the banks is general. It also signifies to take things back; as the government has resumed the possession of all the lands which have not been paid for according to the requisitions of the law, and the of business critical operations. And, the process of protecting data with TAS technology doesn't impact availability or performance. You don't take your applications offline, or put your databases into "backup mode" to ensure continuous protection. Further, TAS systems don't require frequent operational intervention--it's set and forget. TAS systems use storage media very efficiently, and they are completely non-disruptive to the current online environment. In short, they are a data protection dream come true.
Here's why. Traditional disk storage operates only in the present tense--when you write to a traditional disk, previous data is overwritten. You can only read what you last wrote. TAS adds time as a new dimension to storing data. Now, data can be accessed, as it existed at an exact moment in time. When asked to respond to a read or write request, the TAS system responds with data in its present state or just as easily with data as it existed two minutes ago, two seconds ago or two weeks ago.
The eventual proliferation proliferation /pro·lif·er·a·tion/ (pro-lif?er-a´shun) the reproduction or multiplication of similar forms, especially of cells.prolif´erativeprolif´erous
n. of TAS devices will eliminate the proverbial pro·ver·bi·al
1. Of the nature of a proverb.
2. Expressed in a proverb.
3. Widely referred to, as if the subject of a proverb; famous. backup window without the overhead and cost of multiple mirror sets or snapshots. In addition, because the presentation of time-stamped data is non-destructive, customers can recover an application quickly, without compromising the failure history, enabling--perhaps for the first time--after the crisis forensic Belonging to courts of justice.
forensic 1) adj. from Latin forensis for "belonging to the forum," ancient Rome's site for public debate, and currently meaning pertaining to the courts. analysis.
Time Addressable Storage--How practical is it?
TAS technologies have been developed to complement existing data protection technologies, dramatically reducing storage and recovery costs, simplifying the data protection process and reducing business risk. TAS doesn't require a rearchitecting the environment, or dramatically altering operations. Its offers a gradual, non-threatening approach--the more you use it, the more time and money it will save you.
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TAS is here today. At October's Storage Networking World Storage Networking World (commonly called SNW) is a for data storage professionals in the United States. Sponsored by Computerworld and the Storage Networking Industry Association, SNW is held twice each year. conference, a panel of six continuous protection vendors--old school traditional vendors and emerging startups alike--convened to discuss approaches to delivering continuous protection systems. On the show floor even more vendors discussed and demonstrated continuous protection techniques. Most IT experts who get a firsthand first·hand
Received from the original source: firsthand information.
first view of TAS systems walk away impressed im·press 1
tr.v. im·pressed, im·press·ing, im·press·es
1. To affect strongly, often favorably: and excited. It's just so intuitive and so obvious that most just shake their heads and say, "Of course, why didn't we just do this in the first place?"
Aren't Incremental Additional or increased growth, bulk, quantity, number, or value; enlarged.
Incremental cost is additional or increased cost of an item or service apart from its actual cost. Snapshots Good Enough?
It's clear that full mirror-splits are dead--way too expensive, clumsy, and limited in recovery point objective. But what about that new generation of incremental snapshot systems? They offer reduced capacity, and claim to only store the modified blocks--sounds like TAS, right? Not even close. Snapshots require pre-planning (you establish a schedule) so the recovery point is not what you want it to be, it's just the nearest available one. And, you still have to manage all the SPIT copies (can you say, headache with a capital H?). Snapshot systems typically suffer from significant performance degradation DEGRADATION, punishment, ecclesiastical law. A censure by which a clergy man is deprived of his holy orders, which he had as a priest or deacon. as the number and size of snaps increases. Snapshot copies are typically read only--meaning you have to copy them to live disk to effect a recovery--so they don't actually save space, and they definitely don't save time. TAS offers instant access to fully read/writable datasets--no moving, no copying.
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Think of it this way--trains were okay until trucks came along. Snapshots are like trains--they take your goods to stations they choose, on their schedule. Trucks take your goods exactly where you want them delivered, exactly when you want them to get there. So, perhaps the new generation of more efficient and more powerful snapshot systems is like diesel trains--a lot better than the steam engines they replace, but still no match for the internal combustion engine Internal combustion engine
A prime mover, the fuel for which is burned within the engine, as contrasted to a steam engine, for example, in which fuel is burned in a separate furnace. .
It's simple--TAS offers better protection at lower cost. TAS systems should be included in ILM strategies as a perfect first line of defense against data loss and data corruption--freeing resources and offering compelling value. You owe it to yourself to find out more.
Kirby Wadsworth is vice president of Marketing and Business Development at Revivio (Lexington, MA)