As enterprises become centralized, they place more demands on the WAN, particularly for replication. As more emphasis is placed on disaster recovery, enterprises are seeking replication acceleration from WAN optimization vendors.
WAN optimization vendor Silver Peak Systems Inc. has announced Velocity, new off-site replication acceleration software for faster storage and disaster recovery over the WAN, which helps enterprises meet increasingly important recovery point objectives.
Storage managers traditionally have had to go through network administrators to make storage replication a priority, and have faced latency, congestion and limited network capacity challenges while constantly replicating data over the WAN to ensure disaster recovery, said Rick Tinsley, CEO of Santa Clara, Calif.-based Silver Peak.
Replication acceleration more accessible with Silver Peak Velocity
Silver Peak Velocity is backed by Silver Peak's Virtual Acceleration Open Architecture (VXOA) software and simple storage forwarding capabilities. The software-based optimization offering currently works with SnapMirror, a data replication product from NetApp, a Waltham, Mass.-based data management provider. It will soon be compatible with other replication systems -- including Dell, EMC and Hitachi Data Systems.
Enterprises are protecting data by replicating it to a secondary facility -- like the data center or a disaster recovery site. Users can download and install the VXOA virtual appliance with Silver Peak Velocity on a server in both the data center and disaster recovery site, point the NetApp storage filers to the Silver Peak software, and begin running optimized storage traffic across the WAN in minutes, Tinsley said.
The simplified deployment of the storage optimization product should help a broader range of customers get started with replication acceleration, said Dave Bartoletti, senior analyst at Cambridge, Mass.-based Forrester Research Inc.
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"Once you download the appliance, install it in both [the data center and recovery site], it begins optimizing storage traffic without any special network configuration or changes to the existing enterprise network environment," he said.
Even a company with only one data center could benefit from replication acceleration, noted Dr. Jim Metzler, of Metzler, Ashton & Associates, a Sanibel, Fla.-based technology consulting group.
"Smaller enterprises with only one data center can use the software to quickly back up their information to a Software as a Service [SaaS] provider," he said. Companies with smaller or centralized IT departments can back up data to a different physical location with greater ease.
And Silver Peak Velocity can help enterprises replicate more data in less time -- a big benefit during a disaster scenario, Silver Peak's Tinsley noted.
"It takes about a couple hours to replicate 10 gigabytes of data. [Velocity] allows 90 gigabytes per hour to be optimized, cutting replication from two hours to seven minutes," Tinsley said.
Replication acceleration in the hands of the storage manager
Silver Peak Velocity could free up network administrators by shifting data replication control into the hands of storage administrators, Tinsley noted.
Silver Peak Velocity is granting storage managers the freedom to make replication acceleration a priority, which can help an enterprise make better use of network resources, Bartoletti said.
Virtual and storage administrators who had to involve the network team can now handle storage replication acceleration without any special network training, and will be able to better protect their storage environments by replicating them more often, he noted.
"Enterprises have the potential to replicate data to even more locations for better protection, because the model is simpler to manage," he said.