With ExaGrid’s Tiered Backup Storage, each appliance in the system brings with it not only disk, but also memory, bandwidth, and processing power – all the elements needed to maintain high backup performance. The patented disk-cache Landing Zone and Adaptive Deduplication technology ensure the fastest backup and recoveries and efficient long-term retention. ExaGrid works with all leading enterprise backup applications.
Solutions That Transform Storage Landscape
Backup and restore performance are two crucial backup functions. However, we need to consider long-term storage costs. We understand that data deduplication is essential but how you implement it changes everything in the backup. Data deduplication reduces the amount of storage required and also the amount of bandwidth for replication; however, if not implemented correctly, it will dramatically slow down backups, slow down restores and VM boots, and the backup window will grow as data grows. This is since data deduplication is highly computed intensive; you don’t want to perform deduplication during the backup window and you also don’t want to restore or boot from a pool of deduplicated data.
ExaGrid offers a series of various-sized backup storage appliance models that can be mixed and matched in scale-out secondary storage for the backup system. Any size or age appliance can co-exist in the same system and can scale from a 3TB full backup to a 2PB full backup in a single system. The system is flexible since the proper size of appliances can be added as data grows. This eliminates the need for up-front planning and allows customers to expand the ExaGrid system as their data grows. The unique disk-cache Landing Zone allows for the fastest backups and the fastest restores, recoveries, and tape copies. The unique scale-out approach, which includes full appliances in a scale-out system is the only solution that provides a fixed-length backup window regardless of data growth, negating the need for expensive forklift upgrades. The ExaGrid Tiered Backup Storage system allows for replication to a second site for disaster recovery as well as the ability to allow multiple data centers to cross-protect with each other.
ExaGrid looked at the first generation, traditional inline approaches to data deduplication and saw that all vendors had used block-level deduplication. This traditional method splits data into 4KB to 10KB groups of bytes called “blocks.” The backup software, due to CPU limitations, uses 64KB to 128KB fixed-length blocks. The challenge is that for every 10TB of backup data, the tracking table – or “hash table” – is one billion blocks. The hash table grows so large that it needs to be housed in a single front-end controller with additional disk shelves, an approach referred to as “scale-up.” As a result, only capacity is added as data grows and since no additional bandwidth or processing resources are added, the backup window grows in length as data volumes increase. At some point, the backup window becomes too long and a new front-end controller is required, known as a “forklift upgrade.” This is disruptive and expensive.