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Impact Awards: Vote for the best data protection solution

Vote for the best data protection solution in the 2014 Modern Infrastructure Impact Awards. The winner exemplifies what data protection should be in a data center: a way to simplify and improve capabilities.

The Modern Infrastructure Impact Awards recognize the top products, technologies and services in the essential areas of technology that Modern Infrastructure covers. These award-winning tools will be those helping to run enterprise businesses with efficiency and insight -- whether they’re used inside the data center or out.

Judges have whittled down the list of submissions to the finalists below. Voting is open from Oct. 16 through Oct. 31, 2014. Winners will be announced in early January in a special issue of Modern Infrastructure.

Entrants in the Best Data Protection category offer hardware, software or services that simplify and improve an organization’s data protection capabilities.

Click on the links to the left for more information about the finalists for the 2014 Modern Infrastructure Impact Awards' Best Data Protection category.

Asigra Cloud Backup v12.2

Asigra Inc. says: Asigra is the only cloud-to-cloud backup software to include all IT platforms, including physical, virtual, cloud and mobile environments. The solution is also differentiated by its agent-less architecture, which provides for non-disruptive installation, scaling and performance. Asigra's Cloud-to-Cloud backup capability offers enterprise-class data recovery for Google Apps, Office 365, Salesforce, IBM StartCloud and others. Organizations using Cloud applications and platforms for businesses are enjoying the benefits that SaaS-based applications present. However, even as companies transfer their capital expenditure and IT management tasks to SaaS, they are ultimately responsible for the data stored in these environments. Though some platforms perform their own backups, they are not responsible for helping you retrieve deleted, edited or corrupted information. To help users reclaim control of data in this environment, Asigra announced cloud-to-cloud backup and recovery for cloud applications. With Asigra Cloud Backup, users now have the ability to protect this data just like any other enterprise information within their data center. With Asigra Cloud Backup, users now have the ability to protect this data -- just like all other enterprise information within their data center -- and recover it either locally or from a preferred disaster recovery location (remote site).

Barracuda Backup version 6.0

Barracuda Networks says: Barracuda Backup version 6.0 is a complete, cloud-integrated solution for protecting physical and virtual environments that includes software, appliance, and off-site replication. Barracuda Backup 6.0 is simple to deploy, easy to manage and offers unlimited cloud storage. With an extensive range of supported environments and integration with Copy file sync and share services, organizations can replace multi-vendor piecemeal backup solutions with an all-in-one Barracuda Backup appliance. Barracuda Backup supports replication to another Barracuda appliance for private-cloud data protection or secure replication to Barracuda Cloud Storage. Barracuda Backup version 6.0 extends the flexibility for organizations deploying in cloud-connected or private environments. The new version includes a number of updates, such as Local Control to enable operation and management in private environments without sending data to the cloud; faster recovery times with granular recovery of both VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V virtual machines, without the need to restore the entire virtual machine; and added support for Microsoft SQL Server 2014.

Code42 CrashPlan Enterprise Endpoint Backup, version 3.6.2

Code42 Software Inc. says: According to eWeek, only 20 % of corporate data is managed in a database. The rest is on endpoints. CrashPlan provides a much-needed solution, protecting critical corporate data even when it resides on PCs and laptops at the edge of a corporate network -- far from the data center. CrashPlan works seamlessly in the background while users keep working -- often without realizing their data is constantly being protected. It makes that data available anywhere, should a user need it, or should IT need to govern it for security and compliance reasons. With numerous data storage options -- and private, public and hybrid cloud deployments -- CrashPlan is capable of protecting the most sensitive enterprise data, often keeping encryption keys behind the firewall. Deployments include award-winning, cross-platform support and unlimited file sizes, types and number of files unprecedented in the endpoint backup industry.

Additional features:

  • Cloud-proven scalability
  • Secure mobile access and file sync/share
  • Data deduplication and automatic data balancing
  • Protection for data migrations
  • Easier legal and compliance requirements

Enterprises using CrashPlan enjoy significant productivity gains by empowering a single admin to easily support the backup needs of thousands of users, while enabling users to quickly and easily self-restore data. CrashPlan is the ultimate data-protection solution.

CTERA Cloud Storage Services Platform

CTERA Networks says: Designed for large enterprises and service providers alike, CTERA's Cloud Storage Services Platform is the only cloud-enabled solution that combines enterprise endpoint backup software, enterprise file sync-and-share software and cloud storage gateway appliances in a unified, modular platform. It uses the cloud infrastructure of the customer's choice, with built-in security and performance optimization features. Offering data protection solutions for both servers and workstations, CTERA delivers both software-only and hardware-based solutions that take advantage of low-cost, commodity cloud storage infrastructure to deliver managed backup and disaster recovery, while optimizing recovery time and performance.

Some successful customer deployments:

  • A large multi-national insurance firm has deployed CTERA Cloud Storage Gateways across thousands of its branch office locations and projects more than $50 million in savings over traditional branch office storage, by replacing aging Windows file servers and tape backup. The branch appliances are managed centrally, with no on-site IT staff.
  • A large multi-national financial services firm has successfully deployed CTERA's Enterprise File Sync and Share and Endpoint Backup software to more than 50,000 users across their enterprise. The converged backup and file sharing solution utilizes a single small-footprint software agent and is managed from a single console.

EMC Data Domain

Modern Infrastructure says: Data Domain was founded in 2001 to bring deduplication to backup, but the latest version of the Data Domain Operating System, announced this spring, brings the appliances in to the realm of data protection and data management. For example, the latest Data Domain appliances can for archiving, thanks to support for up to a billion files, while the DD Boost feature speeds up backups by offloading part of the deduplication process, with native support for Microsoft SQL Server, IBM DB2, SAP and SAP HANA, according to SearchDataBackup. EMC has also positioned Data Domain for cloud computing providers, thanks to support for multi-tenancy.

ExaGrid EX21000E

ExaGrid Systems Inc. says: ExaGrid offers the only disk-based backup storage solution that solves all the problems of backup storage up front and over time. ExaGrid provides a unique landing zone and approach to deduplication, and the only scale-out solution in its class. With ExaGrid's landing zone, backups land straight to disk without any inline processing. Backups are fast, resulting in the shortest backup window. Adaptive deduplication allows deduplication and off-site replication to occur in parallel with the backups and never impedes the backup process, as they are always a second-order priority. Since backups write directly to the landing zone, the most recent backups are in their full un-deduplicated form, ready for any request. Local restores, instant VM recoveries and tape copies do not require rehydration and are as fast as disk. ExaGrid offers the fastest recoveries and restores. ExaGrid provides full appliances in a scale-out GRID architecture. As data grows, all resources are added, including additional landing zone, bandwidth, processor and memory, as well as disk capacity. The backup window stays fixed in length regardless of data growth which eliminates expensive forklift upgrades. ExaGrid is the only solution in its class that offers this approach.

HotLink DR Express 4.0

HotLink Corp. says: HotLink DR Express is an easy plug-in for VMware vCenter that provides backup/replication plus disaster recovery/business continuity (DR/BC) in Amazon Web Services (AWS). Within minutes of a failure, VMware virtual machines (VMs) are automatically recovered into an AWS DR/BC site. AWS workloads continue to be managed using vCenter. Best of all, the cost is no more than basic backup.

DR Express integrates AWS with vCenter to provide intuitive, automated DR/BC site setup, maintenance, testing, recovery and management for protected VMs, including large multi-tier applications. Seamless interoperability ensures that downtime in a failure is limited to minutes rather than hours or days, and AWS workloads are managed side-by-side with on-premise vSphere workloads. No extra hardware is required since AWS is the VMware mirror site.

Only with HotLink can customers:

  • Extend vCenter to DR/BC in AWS
  • Restore operations in AWS within minutes
  • Automate DR/BC site setup and maintenance
  • Test and validate the DR/BC site easily
  • Fully automate hybrid networking
  • Easily manage the DR/BC site with vCenter
  • Recover VMs on-premises automatically
  • With DR Express, customers can fully protect their data centers at a low cost that is practical for all VMware workloads.

Quantum DXi6900

Quantum Corp. says: The DXi6900 deduplication appliance is powered by Quantum's DXi software with StorNext 5 technology to optimize performance, scalability and manageability. It enables industry-leading scalability and faster backups, restoration and replication while easing the strain on network bandwidth and reducing overall operating expenses. Combined with Q-Cloud Protect services, the new DXi-Series enables customers to build data protection workflows extending across sites to the cloud.

Key enhancements:

  • Quantum's StorNext 5 technology offers the industry's fastest single stream performance and has been proven in some of the most data-intensive environments. It enables DXi6900 to deliver the deduplication performance required for demanding and fluid backup and restore workflows. Unique iLayer software makes multi-site data protection easier, with simple setup configuration wizards, detailed resource utilization reporting and an intuitive topology-based view of the environment.
  • Capacity-on-demand licensing enables users to non-disruptively scale from 17 TB to 510 TB via a simple licensing key, eliminating the uncertainty of predicting growth.
  • Patented variable length deduplication, which provides up to 3 times the disk savings efficiencies versus fixed block approaches, reduces demands on network infrastructures to make multi-site DR solutions practical.
  • Self-encrypting drives with military-grade AES-256 bit encryption provide security at rest and across the wire without degrading performance.

Symantec NetBackup 7.6

Modern Infrastructure says: NetBackup has long been practically synonymous with enterprise data protection. With version 7.6 released this year, the venerable backup software package significantly upped its game, especially with respects to VMware environments. According to SearchDataBackup, major new features of NetBackup version 7.6 include "instant recovery for VMware, NetBackup Accelerator for VMware for faster backups, Replication Director for VMware for snapshot management on NetApp arrays, multi-tenant hosting for cloud providers, the ability to recover from physical machines to the cloud for disaster recovery and integration with VMware vCloud Director." Those features are available either as standalone software, or as part of the NetBackup 5200 integrated appliances.

Unitrends Virtual Backup 8.0

Unitrends Inc. says: Unitrends Virtual Backup (UVB) 8.0 is the industry's only purpose-built virtual appliance providing hypervisor-level protection for VMware vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V and Citrix XenServer. Designed to radically simplify virtual data protection, UVB enables backup of multi-hypervisor environments in just four mouse clicks. UVB combines the most advanced local and off-site backup, archiving and replication capabilities with exceptional performance and scalability. It guarantees customers cost-effective recovery within their service level agreements through instant recovery capabilities that get their businesses up and running in seconds. Backup and recovery can be performed up to 20 times faster, using 66% less storage space and 75% less resources than competing system -- at the industry’s lowest TCO.

Customers also gain:

  • Intuitive, web-based UI: Ability to assess entire onsite and off-site backup environments at a glance; get instant visibility into virtual machine protection status and drill-down for granular detail.
  • Intelligent optimization: Built-in intelligence based on industry best practices that automatically optimizes every step in the backup and recovery process.

Unequivocal disaster recovery: Single-step recovery of virtual machines, files, folders, Exchange and SharePoint items within minutes, and on-premises and off-premises protection. Provides fast failover or archive backups for long-term retention; instant rollback recovery gets data back to production storage 20 times faster than competing products.

This was last published in October 2014

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