BakBone adds data replication to NetVault FASTRecover continuous data protection backup software

BakBone is adding more continuous data protection IP it acquired from Asempra into its product line, but analysts are looking for deeper integration and users have more advanced features on their wish list.

BakBone Software Inc. upgraded its NetVault FASTRecover (NVFR) continuous data protection (CDP) data backup software to allow customers to replicate data from remote sites to a centralized file share.

NVFR 4 combines CDP IP that BakBone acquired from Asempra last year with IP from BakBone's NetVault Replicator to allow continuous point-in-time snapshots to be replicated from remote or branch offices (ROBOs) to a central data center. Customers can then use BakBone's NetVault Backup or any third-party backup tool to protect data at the data center.

Customers would put an NVFR server at any remote site they want to protect as well as at the central data center. They also must set up a physical or virtual application failover server at the remote site or data center, depending on network bandwidth and latency.

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In the event of a disaster or outage, NVFR server images can be used to restore a Windows Exchange, SQL or file server immediately, while data is restored in the background. BakBone is adding support for Windows 2008, SQL Server 2008, and Exchange 2007 with this release.

Other data protection vendors already combine CDP with replication. EMC Corp.'s RecoverPoint integrates the CDP it acquired with Kashya, Inc. in 2006, Symantec Corp. is integrating CDP IP acquired from Revivio Inc. in 2006 into NetBackup, and CA Inc. has CDP from XOsoft Inc. in its Recovery Management suite.

Until now, customers who used BakBone software to protect remote offices needed another enterprise backup software tool at the main data center.

Enterprise Strategy Group analyst Lauren Whitehouse said she'd like to see even deeper integration of Asempra's IP into BakBone's product line. "I'd like to see one interface and one policy engine [for NetVault and FASTRecover]," she said.

One BakBone customer said the most interesting new feature in the NVFR update is support for SQL Server 2008, something he's been waiting for. "I have a single site, so remote office replication isn't relevant to me, but we do have a couple of SQL 2000 boxes that we haven't upgraded because I haven't been able to back up [SQL 2008]," said Derek Kruger, IT and communications supervisor for the City of Safford, Ariz.

Kruger also said he's also looking for more advanced features from BakBone, such as end-user self-service for restores, a feature ROBO backup competitor EMC Avamar has added in recent months. "I have some end users I can trust to show what to do, and they can do their own restores," Kruger said. "I'd like to see that coming down the pike."

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