“Losing my religion” is an expression from the southern region of the United States that means being perplexed to the point of being unable to think what to do. Despite the tremendous advantages that virtualization brings to IT professionals, many find themselves at their wits’ end with respect to protecting ever more prevalent virtualized environments. The cacophony of competing vendor claims as well as the claims of their paid consultants only increases the confusion and attendant frustration in those simply seeking to an optimal solution for protecting their unique IT infrastructure.
There is a war of words going on right now between data protection vendors who offer data protection within the virtual machine versus those who offer data protection at the hypervisor level. These vendors illustrate specific use cases that offer advantages to their methods while ignoring those uses cases in which they have a disadvantage. The best example is a vendor who had a well-respected consultant write a paper that he entitled
This carefully written white paper thoughtfully explores specific use cases in which VM-level backups could potentially be better than host-level backups. The vendor on their web site then retitled this paper
“VMware and Hyper-V Backups: How VM-Level Is Better than Host-Level.” (again, italics ours.)
Given that this same consultant writes for a leading host-level vendor and writes similar papers that explore advantageous use-cases for host-level protection, it is difficult to believe that the difference here is accidental or coincidental.
In this series of blog posts we are going to cut through the self-serving and competing claims and examine each of the arguments in favor and against the various techniques used for virtual data protection. On Thursday, we will discuss virtualizaiton hypervisor protection architectures, so be sure to check back in for that update.