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Quest Software Inc.'s Rapid Recovery (formerly owned by Dell) is block-level, incremental backup software.
Unlike the incremental feature found in legacy products, which backed up the entire changed file, Quest Rapid Recovery backs up only the parts of a file that have been changed. For example, if a traditional backup product backs up a 100 GB database, it backs up the whole 100 GB, even if less than 100 MB of it changes on a daily basis. Rapid Recovery would only back up the 100 MB of changed blocks within the file.
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To ensure backups are consistent, Quest Rapid Recovery integrates with Windows Volume Shadow Copy Service. The block incremental backup software makes for faster backups and allows for more frequent backups, as those backups have less of an effect on production data and networks.
Rapid Recovery tracks its backups so it can provide the latest version of the file, as well as previous versions.
How Rapid Recovery recovers so rapidly
Where Quest's incremental backup software shines is in recovery. In the event of a storage system failure, users do not have to wait for the system to be fixed or replaced, or for backed up data to be copied across the network to the new storage system. Instead, Quest Rapid Recovery provides the most recent copy of the data through an iSCSI mount point. This is recovery in place. The combination of frequent backups and recovery in place enables incredibly tight recovery point and time objectives.
Quest provides its incremental backup software on both bare-metal systems and virtual machines. The vendor supports VMware vSphere Storage APIs -- Data Protection to back up VMware virtual machines (VMs) without installing an agent into each VM (Hyper-V is next on the list).
The 6.0 release of Quest Rapid Recovery also provides recovery of a system in the cloud, essentially providing users with disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS). DRaaS saves users from having to purchase, equip and manage a secondary site.
For Windows and VMware users, Rapid Recovery deserves strong consideration. Its ability to provide frequent, low-impact backups across physical and virtual servers separates it from much of its competition. Its in-place recovery capability makes it invaluable in the event of a storage system failure. The addition of the cloud as a recovery target increases its appeal.
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