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Datrium gets on the rack and heads cloudward

Expanded management with policies, snaps, replication and archiving bulks out SW offer

Datrium has announced a rack scale product to ease large-scale deployment and management software providing virtual machine-focussed protection, replication, copy data management and archiving with a roadmap to public cloud support.

The company provides DVX storage arrays in which the controller functionality runs in accessing servers and accesses data in drive cabinets called data servers.

It has announced the DVX Rackscale Systems, a turnkey system with end-to-end support including bring-your-own servers. Datrium says this is a converged yet open system and the idea is to simplify large-scale deployments.

DVX Rackscale includes DVX Compute Nodes, available with either 16-core Xeon E5-2620 v4 2.1GHz processors or 28-core E5-2680 v4 2.4GHz processors. They are pre-configured with up to 768GB RAM, eight SSDs and DVX software.

Rackscale configurations can start with a single Compute Node and Data Node, and can scale out to 32 compute nodes per DVX Data Node. Datrium supports the mix-and-match of its Compute Nodes with third-party compute nodes running DVX Software.

There is end-to-end Datrium Support which provides 24/7 call home and analytics capabilities.

Datrium's systems also now include Adaptive Pathing software. With this top-of-rack switches no longer need settings such as LACP or MC-LAG for multipath availability and link-aggregated bandwidth.

Datrium's second announcement is its Data Cloud: integrated cloud management software to secure, protect and manage on-premises Datrium-stored data. The company says Data Cloud integrates "functions normally found in third party backup, DR, copy data management and archiving products".

  • Dynamic policy management for VM-based data management with Protection Groups which dynamically bind arbitrary collections of VM, vDisk and file (e.g. templates, ISOs) objects and apply scheduling, retention and replication policies. All objects within a Protection Group can be snapped at the same IO moment across hosts for data consistency. To scale, protection group policies are dynamic and inherit all new VMs that fit naming wildcards.
  • Copy Data Management for DevOps. With one click or a CLI script, VMs can be cloned from existing or snapshot VMs or PGs. Test environments can be cloned from production builds with minimal capacity and no performance impact.
  • VM-Centric Backup and Restore based on redirect-on-write (RoW) snapshots. Backups are granular (vDisk and file level), incorporate dynamic policy management, and include a searchable catalog called a Snapstore. A system can support hundreds of thousands of VM snapshots.
  • Disaster Recovery (DR) and Offsite Archiving based on WAN-optimised Elastic Replication, production data can be protected with snapshot–based asynchronous replication capable of providing up to 48 recovery points per day per Protection Group. Replication performance scales elastically with the number of hosts configured. Minimal host overhead is required since only data-reduced snapshot deltas are sent from host flash. Elastic Replication is also fault-tolerant. Replication continues even if only a single host remains online. The software supports 1-to-many, many-to-1, and bidirectional replication topologies.

A coming Data Cloud version will offer replication to Amazon Web Services (AWS), based on Elastic Replication, and using Blanket Encryption. This could position the public cloud as a store for backed up Datrium data. The company also talks of future multiple public cloud support.

The Data Cloud software is integrated with the DVX storage system and Datrium product manager Tushar Agrawal blogs about Data Cloud here.


Datrium knows that it has to compete with hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) systems, such as Dell EMC's VSAN, VxRail, ScaleIO products, Cisco's HyperFlex, HPE's acquired SimpliVity technology and Nutanix.

CEO Brian Biles tries to separate Datrium from the HCI pack by saying: "While the hyperconvergence landscape is now more about M and A than innovation, Datrium is rapidly evolving a vastly better, turnkey rackscale private cloud with rich, deeply integrated and scalable cloud data management. And it's still early in the year."

Crudely speaking we could think of Datrium as HCI featuring shared storage shelves. Why is that better than full HCI? Biles would say it's better through superior data services, separated compute and storage expansion, and coming public cloud support.

Datrium also has to compete with copy data managers like Actifio, secondary data convergers such as Cohesity, and VM-focussed data protectors like Veeam; hence the feature set listed in the Data Cloud product.

Price and availability

Data Cloud Foundation which includes snapshots, Snapstore, Policy Groups policy templating and search, are available today at no additional charge with any DVX system running DVX Software v2.0.

Elastic Replication support for Secure Archiving to AWS is planned for release by March 2018, with pricing to be announced then.

DVX Rackscale systems are available today, with US list pricing starting at $118,000, and includes Datrium v2.0 software. ®

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