Zmanda™, the leader in open source backup and recovery software, recently polled leading storage analysts to get their views on the top ten data protection challenges and trends facing companies in 2009. Lauren Whitehouse of Enterprise Strategy Group, David Hill of Mesabi Group, and Jerome Wendt of DCIG offered their thoughts on these key data protection issues:
1. Change — Organizations are experiencing a lot of change — often disruptive to data protection policies, practices and technologies — making it difficult for IT to keep pace. For example, server virtualization has impacted the fundamentals of data protection strategies, requiring re-evaluation and re-architecture of processes.combination of Zmanda’s robust backup solutions with Sun’s innovative OpenSolaris operating system, including the advanced ZFS file system, creates one of the most advanced backup-to-disk offerings available on the market today. Specifically, the snapshot capability of ZFS enables fast and scalable backups of today’s most demanding workloads.
2. Data Growth — Large and growing IT and data storage environments are compounding problems with managing data protection, completing backup or recovery within prescribed windows, and managing the cost of storage systems.
3. Reliability — IT organizations are challenged to improve the reliability of backup and recovery. Typically, the number one concern for any organization is to prevent or minimize the amount of downtime. Confidence that data is not only adequately protected but can be restored is key for IT managers.
4. Cost — Doing more with less will be a general theme for 2009 and data protection is no exception. IT managers will increasingly look for lower-cost backup strategies and technologies such as data deduplication, which promise to reduce amount of disk media needed for backup dramatically. IT managers need to weigh media advantages of deduplication with potential complexity and slow-down of recovery processes.
5. Compliance Management — In order to meet governmental compliance requirements, companies need a reliable data recovery system. Such systems must include recovery of not only specific files, but email, instant messages and other data that might be needed to comply with Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (known as FRCP rules) for civil litigation. The recent economic meltdown, coupled with a litigious business environment, makes it necessary for corporate data to be accessible to third-party auditors and attorneys.
6. Cloud Computing — Increasing numbers of organizations are realizing the compelling economic benefits of clouds. As increasing number of applications and storage move to the cloud, IT managers will need alternative data protection technology. Dramatic economies of scale and "always-on" benefits provided by storage clouds make them a compelling alternative to traditional backup media (e.g. tapes).
7. Virtualization — Virtualization will fundamentally change how companies manage their data centers and the current economic crisis is expected to accelerate virtualization in 2009. As companies virtualize servers and storage, disaster recovery in a virtual environment provides new opportunities and challenges.
8. Usability — IT managers will likely find themselves with smaller staffs and budgets for training. This will make ease-of-use of disaster recovery and backup software a key requirement.
9. Long-Term Retention — Business drivers are increasing the time required to retain certain types of data (e.g. for business intelligence or compliance purposes). This poses a burden on IT managers both in terms of increased backup media usage as well as retention of software and devices to be able to recover from these archives after several years.
10. Mobile Workforce — Increasingly mobile workforce creates additional headaches for backup administrators. Issues include being able to provide trusted and secure backups, even if the system is located outside the firewall.
“While the challenges facing IT professionals seem daunting, they don’t need to be overwhelming,” said Chander Kant, chief executive officer of Zmanda. “No matter what the situation, it is important to stay focused on the core fundamentals with your data protection and recovery strategy — embrace change, prepare for rapid growth, and implement cost-effective and reliable solutions while ensuring compliance.”
For more information about the analyst firms mentioned in this release, please visit: Enterprise Strategy Group at www.enterprisestrategygroup.com; The Mesabi Group at www.mesabigroup.com; and DCIG at www.dciginc.com.
Zmanda, based in Sunnyvale, California, is the global leader in open source enterprise backup and recovery. The company’s products — Amanda Enterprise, Zmanda Recovery Manager (ZRM) for MySQL, and Zmanda Internet Backup (ZIB) — make it simple and affordable to backup and recover data in an increasingly complex and heterogeneous IT environment. Amanda Enterprise is an enterprise-grade, network backup solution based on Amanda, the world’s most popular open source backup and recovery software with more than half a million active installations worldwide. ZRM for MySQL is the first mission-critical backup solution designed specifically for MySQL databases. ZIB is the first Windows backup solution to backup both files and live applications to the Amazon S3 storage cloud. Businesses in more than 40 countries trust Zmanda to protect their corporate data. For more information about Zmanda, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.zmanda.com