Introduction to the New Deduplication Option for Quest vRanger v5.3

Based on customer and market feedback through a variety of mediums (on-site, at conferences, via bridge calls and webinars, through electronic surveys and online polls, etc.) we heard loud and clear that data deduplication is a high priority. In fact, it’s by far one of the most requested potential new features amongst Quest’s vRanger® customer base. With vRanger Pro v5.3, we are proud to include a new enterprise-grade, software-based deduplication option via NetVault® SmartDisk – vRanger Edition (“NVSD vRanger Edition”).


Data deduplication technology segments backup data into chunks, applies a unique identifier to each chunk, and eliminates multiple copies of data, leaving only pointers to the shared copy of the data. With explosive growth in unstructured data (such as text documents, presentations, media files, and of course, virtual machine images) emerging as one of IT’s most formidable challenges, coupled with the current short supply of hard disks leading to higher prices, it’s easy to see why deduplication is in such high demand.


Benefits of NVSD vRanger Edition


Our implementation of deduplication for vRanger provides several advantages:

  • Complementary – vRanger already exploits VMware’s Change Block Tracking (CBT) and includes Quest’s patented Active Block Mapping (ABM) technology, which reduces backup storage requirements by up to 1/3 by backing up only changed blocks with active data. CBT and ABM can be leveraged to reduce the amount of data transferred (without impacting the backup operation or production environment) to NVSD vRanger Edition, which can further reduce the backup storage footprint. You simply create an NVSD repository type and point vRanger to NVSD vRanger Edition, using either LAN-free or LAN based transport methods. You can also stream backups from multiple vRanger servers to a single NVSD vRanger Edition instance.
  • Flexibility – Providing vRanger’s deduplication capability as an option allows you to leverage your existing investment in deduplication technology without adding unneeded redundancy and cost. If you haven’t yet invested in deduplication technology, this flexibility allows you to choose the best deduplication option that suits your needs and requirements.
  • High Performance and Scalability – NVSD vRanger Edition completely offloads the resource-intensive deduplication process from your production and vRanger environments. This allows business applications, as well as backup, restore, and deduplication operations to all run at top speed. This design is particularly suited to efficiently protecting and deduplicating large amounts of data, to scale with your growing environment.
  • Material Space Reduction – NVSD vRanger Edition provides the maximum potential for isolating unique data via an enterprise-grade, software-based application. Higher deduplication ratios can generally be achieved with greater standardization of virtual machine images, larger data sets, and a higher number of subsequent backup jobs. Internal testing on various types of backup data in VMware environments yielded deduplication ratios between 14:1 and 39:1, for space reduction percentages between 93% and 97%.
  • High ROI – As a low cost yet highly capable option, NVSD vRanger Edition can provide an attractive, cost-effective option that enables you to meet your data protection goals.


I’ve provided the following summary information to help you plan for and start using NVSD vRanger Edition. More details are included in the NetVault SmartDisk – vRanger Edition Integration Guide located at under the “Docs” tab.


NVSD vRanger Edition Requirements


NVSD vRanger Edition is a hardware-agnostic software application. Below is a summary of software and hardware requirements.


vRanger requirements

  • vRanger Pro v5.3


Operating system requirements

  • Windows Vista (x86, x64)
  • Windows 2003 (x86, x64)
  • Windows 2003 R2 (x86, x64)
  • Windows 2008 (x86, x64)
  • Windows 2008 R2 (x64)
  • Windows 7 (x86, x64)


Hardware requirements

  • Supported when run on a physical machine with the following hardware requirements
    • Two dual core CPUs minimum
    • 2GB RAM minimum, with recommended additional 400MB per 1TB of NVSD-unique data


Note that each instance of NVSD vRanger Edition has practical limits on the amount of deduplicated data that it can support. With a 32-bit OS you are limited to 5TB of unique data, and with a 64-bit OS you are limited to 15TB of unique data. So an additional instance of NVSD vRanger Edition will have to be deployed for every 5TB of unique data on a 32-bit OS and for every 15TB of unique data on a 64-bit OS.


Installing NVSD vRanger Edition


Installation, and getting up and running are straightforward:

  1. Install NVSD vRanger Edition
    1. Note that you need to select Yes on the WebDav Authentication Configuration dialog, since the WebDav protocol is how vRanger communicates with NVSD.
    2. Note also that NVSD vRanger Edition by default uses port 37453 to communicate with vRanger instances that are streaming data to the NVSD instance, and port 37451 for Inter Process Communication (IPC). If you need to use different ports, we recommend you change the port settings on the NVSD instance prior to adding the NVSD repository to vRanger Pro.


  2. Install NVSD vRanger Edition license
    1. Note NVSD vRanger Edition requires its own license key, separate from vRanger Pro.
  3. Install vRanger Pro v5.3
    1. Following the usual easy steps
    2. Note vRanger Pro requires its own license key, separate from NVSD vRanger Edition
  4. Add NVSD repository
    1. Under My Repository you’ll see the NVSD repository type in the list of options
    2. Note that encryption is not supported for NVSD repositories.