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Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V Backup Rises to the challenges
Posted by Didier Van Hoye on September 19, 2016
4.5/5 (2)

Introduction

In Windows Sever 2016 Microsoft improved Hyper-V backup to address many of the concerns mentioned in our previous Hyper-V backup challenges Windows Server 2016 needs to address:

  • They avoid the need for agents by making the API’s remotely accessible. It’s all WMI calls directly to Hyper-V.
  • They implemented their own CBT mechanism for Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V to reduce the amount of data that needs to be copied during every backup. This can be leveraged by any backup vendor and takes away the responsibility of creating CBT from the backup vendors. This makes it easier for them to support Hyper-V releases faster. This also avoids the need for inserting drivers into the IO path of the Hyper-V hosts. Sure the testing & certification still has to happen as all vendors now can be impacted by a bug MSFT introduced.
  • They are no longer dependent on the host VSS infrastructure. This eliminates storage overhead as wells as the storage fabric IO overhead associated with performance issues when needing to use host level VSS snapshots on the entire LUN/CSV for even a single VM.
  • This helps avoid the need for hardware VSS providers delivered by storage vendors and delivers better results with storage solution that don’t offer hardware providers.
  • Storage vendors and backup vendors can still integrate this with their snapshots for speedy and easy backup and restores. But as the backup work at the VM level is separated from an (optional) host VSS snapshot the performance hit is less and the total duration significantly reduced.
  • It’s efficient in regard to the number of data that needs to be copied to the backup target and stored there. This reduces capacity needed and for some vendors the almost hard dependency on deduplication to make it even feasible in regards to cost.
  • These capabilities are available to anyone (backup vendors, storage vendors, home grown PowerShell scripts …) who wishes to leverage them and doesn’t prevent them from implementing synthetic full backups, merge backups as they age etc. It’s capable enough to allow great backup solutions to be built on top of it.

Let’s dive in together and take a closer look.

Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V backup
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Windows Server 2016 – Three Built-in Tools To Protect Your Data From Ransomware
Posted by Vladan Seget on May 10, 2016
5/5 (2)

After spyware and malware IT administrators do have to face another threat – A Ransomware. You have to pay to recover your data that has been encrypted by malware. Clever move from the Pirate’s perspective. Indeed. Pirates are hoping that they can make some dirty money out of it. And sometimes they’re successful. You might be asking what can you do, as a system administrator, to protect yourself against ransomware?

Hackers will always find a way to your data and Anti-malware solutions will always try a way to block them. But you as an admin, must be prepared for an eventual data loss. Prepared how? We’ll try to find some strategies and tools which might be good to know. The tools that are built-in Windows Server 2016 that will be out later this year. Currently in TP5, but there won’t be any major updates on features further down the development cycle so the RTM of Windows Server 2016 shall have all what you can see in the TP5 which is available for download since about a week. We try to do a recap on which tools can be helpful to fight ransomware today.

system protection on Windows Server 2016

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Virtual Volumes (VVols) backup – how it works and which solutions should be used
Posted by Alex Samoylenko on April 27, 2016
4/5 (3)

Many of you have heard of Virtual Volumes (VVols) storage technology, which allows essential increasing of storage I/O performance within VMware vSphere environment by using logical volumes for certain virtual machines components and transferring of some storage operations to disk arrays.

 Backup infrastructure

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Let’s Get Real About Data Protection and Disaster Recovery
Posted by Jon Toigo on April 7, 2016
4.75/5 (4)

Personally, I am getting rather tired of the dismissive tone adopted by virtualization and cloud vendors when you raise the issue of disaster recovery.  We previously discussed the limited scope of virtual systems clustering and failover:  active-passive and active-active server clusters with data mirroring is generally inadequate for recovery from interruption events that have a footprint larger than a given equipment rack or subnetwork.  Extending mirroring and cluster failover over distances greater than 80 kilometers is a dicey strategy, especially given the impact of latency and jitter on data transport over WAN links, which can create data deltas that can prevent successful application or database recovery altogether.

HA or DR

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NetApp dropped the ball by letting EMC gobble Data Domain
Posted by Oksana Zybinskaya on April 6, 2016
4.67/5 (3)

According to IDC quarterly report, EMC’s Data Domain leads in the purpose-built backup appliance market.

Worldwide Quarterly Purpose-Built Backup Appliance Tracker for 2015’s fourth quarter shows the top five vendors’ revenue chart and puts EMC at the first line with about 68 per cent share and $708m revenues.

The following positions are occupied by Symantec ($125.1m / 12%), IBM ($41.6m / 4%), HPE ($40.7m / 3.9%), Dell ($23.6m / 2.3%), and Others ($107m / 10%).

quaterly

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World Backup Day Is Coming
Posted by Jon Toigo on March 16, 2016
5/5 (7)

At the end of March, an event little known outside of a small community of vendors, will happen:  World Backup Day.  Expect a flurry of blogs and tweets and posts and all of the other stuff that goes along with such marketing events.  Then, expect the discussion to go silent for another year…unless a newsworthy data disaster occurs.

Truth be told, backup has never been front of mind for IT planners.  Most planners don’t even consider how they will back up the data they will be storing when then go out to purchase storage rigs.  And most have no clue regarding which data needs to be protected.  Backup is an afterthought.

Backup steps

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