Backup and replication are frequently mentioned in the same breath, just like peanut butter and jelly, or Wozniak and Jobs. We talked fondly about our backup buddy, veeam, in our recent blogpost.
But the topic of replication justifies further study: What is replication? Why do replication and will it annoy me? And will replication features cost more money?
What is this replication thing, anyway?
Replication is the practice of duplicating data between endpoints, generally to provide disaster recovery (DR) capabilities. Losing access to business-critical data in today’s high-speed world of hosted applications and on-demand everything is not only undesirable, it can be costly.
Replication is an improvement over traditional DR solutions, such as tape backups and offsite storage. Those forms of replication have their place in the data protection hierarchy; but replication exists for one reason and one reason only: fast recovery.
Alphabet soup terms, such as RTOs (recovery time objectives) or RPOs (recovery point objectives), generally come down to one thing: restore data and business applications ASAP or you’re SOL.
You’re SOL with industry-standard replication
Replication is generally included in the management software that most vendors ship with their disk arrays. “Included,” that is, but you’ll have to pay a licensing fee to unlock it. Gotta love enterprise storage companies who load the product with features that customers cannot use and don’t know they have, and then charge customers extra for the privilege of accessing them.
Another hassle is that in order to work the way that these built-in replication features are supposed to, you’ll need two identical storage systems – one for the source and another for the target. This setup can make the costs of replication very prohibitive, especially if you’re going with all-flash storage, and a vendor that operated in this archaic fashion.
Your first time with replication
As with many things in life, the first time is always the most memorable; replication is no different. The initial “seed” – creating a full copy of data and loading it on the second system – is always a challenge. The initial seed is time consuming, for one, and then there are logistics to consider. If you’re replicating from a number of locations to a single store, that’s a considerable problem. Getting the second system off site to a geographically removed location is another problem to overcome. Historically, vendors, system integrators, and IT administrators have been forced to think of creative workarounds to accomplish the gargantuan task of replication for the first time.
What makes Tegile so special?
Now that you see how replication works in enterprise storage, let’s look at how Tegile does replication the right way. Tegile includes replication in the software of every product we sell – and when when we say “include,” we actually mean that replication is included.
When you purchase a storage system from Tegile, you already bought replication. It’s already on your system; and you might as well use it without giving us more money. Set your replication schedule and automate it, or run it manually, based on your needs. And our simple Tegile interface lets you use your cloned LUNs and shares immediately and intuitively.
Don’t believe it?
Tegile’s replication solution is flexible enough not to lock you into identical twin arrays. Our customers replicate between and among different systems based on their budget and business needs. Replicating from an all-flash array to a hybrid array is frequent. There are probably some crazy kids who replicate from a hybrid array to an all-flash array. Why? No idea. Are we judging? Absolutely not!
Bi-directional? Sure. Go from point A to point B, and point B to point A. Go from one-to-many, or many-to-one. The only limitation, of course, is the available capacity on the receiving end for the data that you’re replicating. Keep in mind our data reduction capabilities – inline compression and inline deduplication – that dramatically cut down costs for storage acquisition and operations.
What about the initial seed?
As for the initial seed, we have the benefit of allowing you to do it locally, then ship the array to its final destination. Generally this approach is the most practical and affordable one; and our replication offering is robust enough that the deltas are copied from wherever the initial seed left off. On top of that, our snapshot-based replication is secure and bandwidth efficient.
With snapshot-based replication, the choice is up to you for frequency or granularity based on your RPOs, and how much changed data you need to recover. Snapshots and clones in virtualized environments can sometimes be a beast; so we’ve created ours to be space efficient and VM-consistent so you can recover instantly from data loss or corruption. Tegile also supports quiesced snapshots, in order to ensure that your application data is consistent, and to get you back up and running quickly.
Check out replication and recovery from Tegile
With a granular level of control, and features to fit any business need, Tegile offers one of the most effective replication and recovery solutions on the market. If you want to talk about your replication needs, send a note to email@example.com. At Tegile, we do replication the right way.