Simplified Disaster Recovery with ETERNUS Snapshot Manager

When disaster strikes, no organization can afford to stay offline. Even a few hours can be catastrophic, and the outcome can be even worse if mission critical data is lost during an outage. Small businesses in particular are vulnerable: According to Gartner, 70 percent of small firms that experience major data losses have to close within the next 12 months.

Consequently, business owners and executives naturally want to avoid putting their companies (and jobs) at risk, and so constantly seek out solutions they can depend on to ensure that their businesses stay up and running.

How Fujitsu is supporting disaster recovery

Fujitsu has introduced its next generation ETERNUS Snapshot Manager (ESM) to enable businesses of all sizes prevent the loss of vital information, from a single file to an entire system, while speeding up the recovery operations. This software, based on the latest IntelliSnap technology from our strategic partner Commvault, manages array-based snapshots and data replication between Fujitsu storage systems to enable reliable business continuity and accelerated recovery.

Most of us are familiar with the value that snapshots taken on our mobile phones bring. From photographing the parking space where you left your car at the airport to taking a picture of the receipt for your luggage held by a hotel concierge. These snaps are extremely useful when you fail to remember where you parked, or if you lose the vital ticket that will reunite you with your luggage. But while snapshots in these scenarios are extremely useful, snapshots in a data protection scenario allow you to retrieve data that is lost due to a system issue or human error. They can contribute to a business’ ability to continue operating quickly.

In this context, snapshots also provide peace of mind. Creating them essentially involves capturing an image of files or volumes at a predetermined frequency. If a file is lost or corrupted in some way at a later date, it is easy to recover it by returning to a snapshot from a point in time before the deletion. It is possible to return an entire system to its status at a given point in time using snapshots which can even be used to quickly restart a virtual machine or also for development tests.

The latest version of the ETERNUS Snapshot Manager is more effective than ever when disaster strikes. It offers disaster-resilience by making it possible to replicate array-based snapshots to a second ETERNUS array. The software creates a snapshot on the source array and automatically triggers the creation of a duplicate snapshot on the second (target) array. These snapshots can be stored on ETERNUS all-flash or hybrid systems. In the case of a failure on the source side, both the active and snapshot data are accessible on the disaster recovery site. As a result, recovery capabilities become more granular as more frequent and more up-to-date production data copies are made – with full application-awareness.

Furthermore, the ETERNUS Storage Cluster configuration also features an automatic failover capability that enables the target array to automatically take over the activities during an incident to guarantee nonstop operation. The ETERNUS Storage Cluster also supports a manual failover process for planned power shutdowns, disaster recovery tests and non-disruptive upgrades. The ETERNUS Snapshot Manager additionally supports these usage scenarios. The snapshot software creates test/dev copies at the disaster recovery site, offloading test/dev from production and eliminates the need for manual operations, labor-intensive refreshes, and scripts – significantly reducing overhead and accelerating test/dev operations.

The user-friendly ESM console also allows administrators to centralize and automate the management of application-aware, ‘quick-fire’ snapshots including granular recovery and indexing without the need for scripting. These make it faster than ever to speed up a data restore across all environments – from physical, to virtual and hyper-converged. The bottom line is that the new version of ESM helps IT teams significantly reduce system downtime and meet even the most stringent business requirements by minimizing data loss in the case of an unexpected system failure.

But, while ESM does enable the restoration of files and systems to any point in the past, it is not a complete backup solution. As the snapshots are stored on the primary storage system, they have limitations in the case of disk system failure or a ransomware attack, as any infection of the original files will also affect the snapshots. But this is where the ETERNUS Storage Manager in combination with the backup appliance ETERNUS CS200c comes into its own – as the combination makes it possible to move or copy the snapshots to a different location, means into the appliance disk space. This solution is a very cost-efficient approach for snapshot-based backup to disk.

Fujitsu ESM supports the Fujitsu ETERNUS AF all-flash arrays, ETERNUS DX hybrid systems and ETERNUS Storage Cluster configurations with deep application and virtual machine integration. Thanks to simple, array-based licensing, the software can be used to manage any number of snapshots, with no capacity limit, as the solution is flexible and intended to scale in line with changing backup requirements.

It is said that hindsight is 20:20. You too can achieve this luxury with Fujitsu’s ESM – which can transport you back to any point in the past to retrieve any files that were accidentally deleted or damaged. The functionality will quickly form an integral part of your comprehensive data protection strategy. To find out more about features, benefits and use cases, read our white paper.

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