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ExaGrid growing in parallel, adds global GRID back-up to appliance software

Storing in an undeduplicated form means a faster restore

ExaGrid's growth is a reminder that Data Domain is not having everything its own way in the deduping back-up-to-disk market. V4.9 of ExaGrid's appliance software has global deduplication across all NAS shares and appliances in a scale-out GRID, along with parallel Oracle database back-up.

Global dedupe means customers can redirect back-up jobs to any NAS share, on any appliance, at any time, while maintaining data deduplication globally across the GRID. It also increases the potential data reduction ratio for any one back-up job, and reduces the overall capacity needed to store back-up data.

The v4.9 software also supports Oracle RMAN Channels; they can be used to back up Oracle databases up to 800TB in size, and write to multiple devices/NAS shares for better backup performance and failover. RMAN Channels automatically writes “sections” in parallel to all NAS shares and automatically redirects the next “sections” based on available targets.

  • If any GRID appliance fails, the sections are automatically redirected to the active appliances
  • The most recent database is stored in undeduplicated form in the ExaGrid appliance's "landing zone", providing faster restores because they are unrehydrated. All long-term retention data is stored in deduplicated form
  • As the database data grows, the back-up window can stay fixed in length by adding appliances to the GRID, bringing compute with capacity

Dave Lively, back-up and recovery systems administrator at Grow Financial, provided this quote about ExaGrid:

We were using EMC Data Domain. Its unit did a good job of performing basic back-ups, but it really fell short on restores.

Ninety-nine per cent of the time we need to restore data from the most recent back-up, but with EMC Data Domain, stored data had to be reconstituted and the recovery process was long and complicated.

ExaGrid’s GRID architecture enables us to expand the system as needed by adding appliances into the scale-out GRID.

Moreover, the fact that the ExaGrid stores the most recent back-up in an undeduplicated form allows for faster restores because we can access data immediately from the unit’s landing zone.


ExaGrid-Veeam Accelerated Data Mover concept

ExaGrid reminds us it has more than 700 customers using ExaGrid with Veeam backup software, many using ExaGrid-Veeam Accelerated Data Mover software. This is a joint Veeam-ExaGrid development which integrates the Veeam data moving engine onto the ExaGrid appliance.

Thus it achieves an acceleration like Data Domain Boost, but not by pre-deduping data at the back-up side of the link as Boost does. An ESG Lab test found that it improved the performance of Veeam full back-ups by almost 2x and Veeam synthetic fulls by 6x.

Oracle RMAN has a Data Domain Boost integration.

The v4.9 software upgrade is available at no charge to all customers on active yearly maintenance and support, and should ship at the end of August 2015. ®

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