Squeezing out that last bit of performance, whether it be a lemon or data protection.

[This is the fifth excerpt from my How to Sell Backup to Your CFO whitepaper.]

It is the nature of every technology industry to tout its features and promote the attributes of its offerings.  The data protection segment is no different. There are many companies discussing in exhausting detail the latest feature/functionality that has been released.  George Crump at Storage-Switzerland has identified the three top areas with respect to data protection that cause the most wasted time:

  • Making sure that all backups are completed.
  • Squeezing out that last bit of performance.
  • Dealing with the agile data center.

The first thing that’s needed to make sure backups are completed is an integrated management and monitoring system designed with a simple, single-pane of glass dashboard so that you can tell the status of your backups and your vaulting (disaster recovery) operations at a glance.  You want to make sure that you either use a single integrated and federated system or you want to make sure you can integrate disparate point solutions into a single dashboard system.  Of course, the more point solutions you have, then the more time you’re going to spend writing scripts and integrating them. Therefore, you want to minimize the number of point solutions whenever possible.

Squeezing out that last bit of performance from a data protection solution is incredibly problematic.  Quite often there is a direct trade-off here between capital expenditure and operational expenditure.  Keep your options open by using a scalable system which allows you to attach to any network segment but still allows you to monitor and manage from that single pane of glass.

The concept of the agile data center sounds good until you realize that this means that you will be constantly adapting and responding your data protection to that agility.  Make sure that you have a flexible data protection system that can respond to that agility via not only scalability but through the flexibility of working in a heterogeneous environment with respect to not only compute platforms, operating systems, and applications but also heterogeneous storage as well.