First things first. What is data archiving? Simply put, it’s a process that takes data that’s no longer in use or has lost its relevance and moves it to lesser expensive storage such as magnetic tape or cheap disk storage. Archived data is usually in a compressed format and may also include deduplication. Archived data can then be accessed at a later date if needed but recovery times are typically quite lengthy especially if the archives are on tape and or located offsite. Archiving helps Admins manage server storage and also assists organizations in meeting regulatory compliance.
Now that we have a grasp on “archiving”, let’s take a look at the Quest Rapid Recovery Archiving feature; how it works, and what the benefits are in using it.
But first here’s a brief over view of Rapid Recovery:
- Rapid Recovery is based on point-in-time snapshots which occur at the block level backup of a protected machines volume…which we call an “Agent”.
- The initial “snapshot” is called a “base image”. The base image captures all the data at the block level
- After the base image has been taken, Rapid Recovery will then perform “incremental” point-in-time snapshots on a set schedule…forever. Set-and-forget-it.
- The base image and incrementals form what is known as a “recovery point chain”. Restores can be done from any point within the chain.
- All data that is backed up goes through Rapid Recovery’s inline deduplication and compression algorithms before written to disk. As changes occur on an Agent only the deltas are transferred which drastically cuts down on network traffic.
That’s really basic but hopefully you get the idea. (If not please let me know and I’ll be more than happy to help explain further)
Here’s how it works:
Remember in my brief over view on how Rapid Recovery creates “base images” and “incrementals” which form a “recovery point chain”? Well when you use the Archiving tool you’re essentially taking the recovery point chain for a particular Agent or groups of Agents and sending it in the form of an archive to a location of your choosing. Whether it be sent locally, to a network location, (removable drives) or the Cloud, (Microsoft Azure, AmazonS3, Rackspace, or OpenStack).
There are two ways you can run a Rapid Recovery Archive:
- One-Time Archive: from a selected recovery point an archive is created including all preceding point in time snapshots. It is a one-time operation.
- Continuous Archive: this method creates the initial archive and continues to update the archive with new incremental snapshots…forever. This in most cases provides a greater number of recovery points from which to restore.
Most backup solutions today offer some sort archiving feature. Thing is, is that in most cases having to recover data from an archive can be somewhat daunting. First you have to figure out where the archive is, then if (for instance) its offsite (depending on the vendor) you might have it brought to you or have someone at the offsite location load the media so you can search for the data you need. Then you have to download the data. That’s all before you’re able to present it to the user.
What if you could simply mount a recovery point from an archive file just like you would from the actual backup? What if it just took seconds to have your archive ready to explore? Whether it be file level or…yes…bare metal restore of an entire server? Rapid Recovery’s archiving tool allows just that! No more waiting for the archive to be imported to the media server, downloaded, trekked across town…across the country.
Rapid Recovery Backup and Disaster Recovery has changed the game with its Archiving ability. It allows incredible flexibility when it comes to:
- Reduce/Manage backup storage footprint
- Meet regulatory compliance through long-term archival retention
- Getting mission critical data offsite in an affordable manner
- Saves time and effort when it comes to restoring from an archive
Find out more about Quest Rapid Recovery.