Virtualization Technology News and Information
Vizioncore vRanger Pro 4.5 Speeds Image-Based Backup Performance and Reduces Size of Data Archives

Vizioncore Inc., the market leader in virtualization data protection and management solutions, and a wholly owned subsidiary of Quest Software, Inc., today announced the availability of vRanger Pro Data Protection Platform (DPP). Version 4.5 of the image-based data protection technology enables IT administrators to address a major problem that has plagued IT departments for many years—backing up systems of any data size within required time windows.

"vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP offers well-designed and reliable image-level backups that can be deployed easily and inexpensively," said beta customer Andrew Gahm, a systems and security engineer for South Jersey Healthcare. "The Active Block Mapping and Change Block Tracking features allow us to easily backup all of our 120 virtual servers well within our allotted time frame. But the key aspect is recovery: we're delighted to find that the recovery process is faster because we're storing a smaller image as well."

Faster Backups With Active Block Mapping and Change Block Tracking

vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP features patent-pending Active Block Mapping (ABM) accompanied by Change Block Tracking (CBT). Both features have already proven their value as components of Vizioncore’s vReplicator solution. ABM queries the Windows OS to remove inactive blocks from read lists during backups, which accelerates the data-collection process by an average of 49 percent compared to vRanger Pro 4.2.3. ABM works on its own to speed full backups, typically performed weekly by Vizioncore customers. ABM also works in combination with CBT to speed incremental and differential backups, typically performed nightly. ABM is particularly helpful in speeding the backup of virtual machines running file and print services, which create and delete many small files as a routine part of their operation. Notably, ABM also speeds recovery by an average of 90 percent as compared to vRanger Pro 4.2.3 by avoiding the need to write zero blocks.

With CBT, vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP receives changed blocks by making queries to the VMware vStorage API, which returns the list of the changed blocks. The CBT approach is dramatically faster than legacy technologies that resort to scanning the virtual file system for all changes. The combination of ABM and CBT reduced the size of backup archives by an average of 25 percent compared to vRanger Pro 4.2.3.

Lauren Whitehouse, a senior analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group, commented on the new version of vRanger Pro DPP: "Traditional file-level backup is cumbersome and inefficient in server virtualization environments. Vizioncore vRanger Pro’s image-based backup provides a portable point-in-time image of a virtual machine without disrupting the virtual machine-resident applications or overwhelming the host’s CPU. Further, vRanger Pro takes advantage of Changed Block Tracking in vSphere and applies its own Active Block Mapping to dramatically reduce the size of the image file, accelerating backup and optimizing bandwidth and storage capacity.”

Faster Restores With Object-Level Recovery (OLR) for Microsoft Exchange E-mail Systems

vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP also features support for Quest Recovery Manager for Exchange (RME) to provide object-level recovery (OLR) for Microsoft Exchange. With RME, vRanger Pro DPP is the first image-based solution to provide agent-less OLR from image-based backups. This set of capabilities enables administrators to search, select and restore individual Exchange e-mail objects from a vRanger Pro DPP backup image, including individual e-mail messages along with their attachments and individual e-mail folders. OLR offers faster, more flexible restores of Exchange e-mail objects rather than forcing an entire VM image to be covered.

Additional New vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP Features

In addition to Active Block Mapping, Change Block Tracking and Recovery Manager for Exchange, Vizioncore has also added these important new features to vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP that give users additional flexibility and security in administering system backups and restores:

Vizioncore VSS driver: Ensures application database integrity in Windows guest OS during backup by ensuring a point-in-time quiesce of the database and log file truncation.

Custom Backup Groups: Allows administrators to create backup jobs for vCenter folders and to dynamically include the current list of VMs in folders as they change without having to reconfigure the jobs.

Thin Disk Support: Permits users to backup thin-disk virtual machines to increase ESX 4 vSphere storage efficiency by only allocating storage space for disk content utilized by the virtual machines.

Optional AES-256 Encrypted Repositories: Encrypts all save points within selected repositories and allows for an encrypted password to be specified as part of the configuration.

"In one business case, vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP reduced the data backup time of a 2.8 GB virtual machine from 94 minutes down to three minutes," said Mike Coffman, DVP, Server Virtualization Management for Quest Software, the parent company of Vizioncore. "This demonstrates how image-level backups are more reliable than file-level backups and address the number one backup problem that has plagued IT for decades: Getting backup jobs to complete in the available windows. Many backup innovations have evolved in recent years to try to solve the challenge, but the exponential growth of data has been too large to manage with traditional methods. However, the image-based backup approach of vRanger Pro DPP, with the added features of ABM, CBT and RME, now effectively addresses that challenge."

About vRanger Pro 4.5 Data Protection Platform

vRanger Pro 4.5 DPP is generally available now and priced at $499 per socket. The solution provides several critical benefits to enterprise and SMB environments:

  • Faster backup and recovery performance
  • Reduced network bandwidth requirements for transmitting backup images
  • Decreased storage requirements for retaining backup archives
  • Reduced risk relative to data integrity, corruption and consistency
  • Rapid and flexible recovery of Microsoft Exchange e-mail
  • Consistent backup of Microsoft Exchange and all application databases
  • Elimination of backup agent dependence
  • Reduced administrative overhead in backup job configuration
  • Increased ESX 4 vSphere storage efficiency
  • Improved data backup security
Published Tuesday, May 25, 2010 1:36 PM by David Marshall
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