Data is not uniform, nor are data centers. The challenge facing enterprise backup applications is keeping up with the transforming data center. Enterprise backup software has an almost impossible task: Protecting data from applications that may be 20 years old, while supporting new innovations such as virtualization and the cloud.
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Commvault Systems Inc. strikes that balance. It provides robust enterprise application backup and is one of the first backup vendors to fully exploit new technologies. The vendor has done this all without resorting to acquisition, which has led to a more seamless, integrated backup application.
Commvault's strength in the enterprise
Commvault Systems covers all of the bases from the perspective of an enterprise application. It offers complete support of all of the major operating systems and virtual environments. It provides online backup and recovery of applications like Oracle, MS SQL and Exchange, as well as many others. Commvault also offers complete support for disk and tape as backup targets.
The vendor has several fairly unique innovations, such as the snapshot management integration backup, IntelliSnap. Commvault IntelliSnap enables a user to trigger a storage array snapshot from a single console and to direct the software to back up that snapshot.
Another unique capability of Commvault backup software is the built-in deduplication feature. Data can be verified for redundancy prior to being transferred to the backup device, saving not only storage capacity, but also network bandwidth.
Commvault backup software provides native support of the cloud. It uses the cloud as a backup target or backup replication target and does not need a third-party gateway device to enable its cloud backup, as the capability is built in. Administrators can re-instantiate fallen servers in the cloud and then access the Commvault data stores located there.
How does Commvault power its data management?
In addition to its backup capabilities, Commvault backup software has a complete archive capability that provides enterprises with the ability to create and adhere to data retention and compliance requirements. Unlike most backup products, the retention and compliance capability shares the same look and feel as the vendor's main backup functions.
To power its data management, Commvault Systems provides full indexing of the data that it is either backing up or archiving. This means that when users and administrators need to find data, they can leverage context-level indexing to not only search for files, but to search within files.
One-off point prowess
Not only does Commvault backup software cover the enterprise basics, it also offers capabilities that are typically provided by one-off, environment-specific products. It offers support for VMware, Hyper-V, Amazon Web Services Elastic Compute Cloud and Microsoft Azure.
Commvault provides recovery in place-like functionality to instantiate virtual machines (VMs) in the cloud or at another on-premises location. It also includes a unique VM archiving functionality that helps reduce VM sprawl by automatically identifying, classifying and retiring unused VMs.
Also, Commvault offers laptop and cloud application backup. In its latest version, it is accessible from third-party applications. This access enables organizations to script and automate workflows. The data format is open, allowing the information that it contains to be leveraged for other purposes.
Commvault's breadth of capabilities does bring some complexity. There are numerous features to go through, configure and enable. But once an enterprise sets up the backup software, Commvault provides one of the better balances of enterprise power and startup agility.
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