Virtualization has become the fastest adopted environment in the recent times as its multiple advantageous functionalities have given IT a new turnaround. The physical infrastructure is being migrated to virtual, which brings in the need of efficient solutions to protect these environments.
System failure earlier was confined to just a single server but after virtualization the threat is to all the VMs which are prone to fail when host becomes the prey. It’s been quite a time now since virtualization emerged but businesses opting for this environment still do not have any efficient protection measure in times of disaster or a data loss.
Backup and Disaster recovery popularly termed as the BDR solution has to be applied and used by businesses moving towards Virtual environment.
Let’s look into some of the important aspects of such solutions which is a must have. This will help organizations choose the best BDR solution for their virtualized data centers.
Squandering, of course not good for your pocket.
No Business would want to waste their time and money on inefficient solutions which lack the requirement of a good Backup working model. Choose wisely for your environment, a backup solution that meets the industry standards.
When a backup tool is stated by its ability that it can backup your virtual machines, doesn’t actually mean it can. Many backup solution makes use of the same traditional file backup agents which is used to backup the physical machines also to backup the virtual machines running under that physical host and this is inefficient and might affect your virtual infrastructure performance. Rather, look for a solution which offers an agentless solution for your Virtual infrastructure.
A productive BDR solution should perform block level backups of virtual machines such that only the changed blocks of virtual machine disk files are considered in the backup process after the initial full backup. These changed blocks resulting the incremental backups will be combined with the first full backup at the time of recovery, to provide the most recent current image-level backup of the virtual machines.
Backups will be of no use if there is no good and a working recovery plan. Multiple restore options are to be looked for, while choosing a BDR solution. The Backup tool should work in coordination with the Visualization Management Tool, such that image-level recoveries can be performed seamlessly. These multiple restores should enfold in it Instant VM boot options to keep your business getting back promptly at times of Disaster or any kind of Data loss.
Is your Backup solution even aware?
A backup tool must be intelligent enough to know what application is running on the guest machines which will help it communicate with the appropriate API’s and perform online database backup without disturbing the production environment.
This is the Application Aware Processing feature which can help you distinguish the best solution among multiple others in the market. Talking about Applications, it is important to know that Microsoft’s volume shadow service (VSS) quiesce the Application Writers, inside a virtual machine, which ensures consistent Backup. This process ensure that Microsoft applications inside the VM (such as SQL Server and Exchange) are quiesced when the backup is performed.
Many IT-admins are finding the manual truncation process of the transaction logs of database to be tedious. They require a tool which can automate the process of truncating the logs after the backup is completed.
Cross Platform Recovery
The configured Backup procedure is performed as per schedule and is sent to the repository for storage. This backup data is ready for recovery at any point of time. In a scenario where you expect migration of the backed up data, your Backup solution must be reliable. Choose a tool which has the ability to perform migrations not only to the same platform but which will also work well in the cross platform requirements. A backup taken from Hyper-V (.VHD) should be recovered as VMware (.VMDK) guest machines or vice-versa. A hypervisor independent Recovery tool is what will work as the game changer in your DR environment.
Backup of virtual machines to a local server drive and recovering them in minutes is really great but what happens if that backup server is crashed? So the smartest way to choose a backup tool is to check whether the backup tool offers replication. The critical virtual machines has to be replicated to the target host and synchronized with the source with minimal RPO. This results in a fortified VM replication which is a must for Business Continuity. Apart from efficient replication, the Failover and Failback processes are to be deemed for an A+ grade Backup solution.
Protection of your IT environment is of course not an easy task. A bigger challenge is finding an efficient Backup solution to protect your IT datacenter. Choosing a reliable backup solution will enrich your IT field experience. The Vembu BDR Suite is one such product with the required traits, where you can deploy the Backup software once for all, rather than clinging on to a tool without the above mentioned features which will anyway not help you out with your disaster recovery environment. Evaluate the Backup products available in the market and make sure to look out for the required features and products reliability before making a decision.