Unitrends debuts flash in Recovery Series physical and virtual backup appliances

Unitrends puts flash in a backup appliance as Recovery Series promises single screen for physical and virtual machine backup

Backup products supplier Unitrends has added flash storage to its Recovery Series backup appliances.

The company has also given a timeline to unify its various physical and virtual machine backup software components into one instance and has added hybrid cloud storage access to its Recovery Series appliances.

The appliances – which allow customers to configure virtual and physical server backup – were upgraded last week, with the launch of 11 new models (details here) that range from 1TB SME/branch office desktop hardware to 97TB enterprise versions.

Backup appliances take backup software and embed it into hardware with its own disk storage built in.

Backup appliances are a simple way to deliver backup services without the need for specialist backup staff to manage them. That makes backup appliances well suited to SMEs and branch offices of large enterprises, while the larger backup appliances are also appropriate for smaller datacentre operations.

Enterprise metadata

A key addition to the Recovery Series family is the use of flash in the enterprise-level appliances. This is a new step in backup appliance hardware and has been done, said CTO Mark Campbell, because: “It speeds everything up.”

“We’ve targeted flash at metadata,” said Campbell. “If you’re using advanced data deduplication, the biggest challenge is how to store metadata. You just can’t store it on the same rotational disk as the data itself, as that makes things slow.”

Unitrends claims up to 300% faster backup and 125% faster restores using flash. In particular, flash is targeted at providing a platform for rapid restore of virtual machines.

Recovery appliances on single screen

Meanwhile, Campbell told ComputerWeekly.com that next year would see unification of the various backup software elements present on Recovery Series appliances.

Currently, the three backup software components on Recovery Series appliances are all managed from separate screens.

They are Unitrends Enterprise Backup, which is for physical servers; Unitrends Virtual Backup, (formerly PHD Virtual ); and Reliable DR, formerly VirtualSharp, which is a disaster recovery automation and orchestration tool acquired from PHD Virtual.

“These will be combined in 2015,” said Campbell.

Unitrends Virtual Backup protects VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V environments with Citrix XenServer to be added.

In the latest version of Recovery Series Unitrends has also added access to its NoLimits Cloud public cloud so users can use hybrid cloud functionality.

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