Technical Explanation of NetVault FastRecover's FlashRestore technology

Since the beginning of the computer age, users have been losing files and administrators have been restoring files. It’s a constant that occurs over and over again. Businesses have dedicated entire teams to address the issue. Over time, they've found newer and better ways to handle the problem. First, they simply made a copy of their data and saved it in another location. This way, if there was ever a problem, they had two versions of the same file. But as the amount of data they needed to protect became larger and larger, that got cumbersome. Later, technology concepts such as full backups (copy of all the data) and incremental backups (just the changes since the last backup) were created. One of the problems with full and incremental backups is they can take a long time to complete. It also takes a long time to restore. A file that is 100GB may take X amount of time to back up. It'll take that same amount of time to restore.

 

That is, until FlashRestore was introduced.

 

FlashRestore™ is a patented technology first implemented in NetVault® FastRecover, Quest's continuous data protection (CDP) solution. It’s unique in the backup and restore marketplace because it allows users to not only eliminate backup windows, but also restore their data in seconds—no matter how large the volume.

 

You may ask yourself: Why is restoring a file in under 30 seconds important? The best way to answer is to provide a real-world example of FlashRestore in action.. Say a business is backing up a 300+ mailbox Exchange server every night. To throw out a number, say the backup takes 4 hours to complete. If the business was using traditional backup and restore software, we can also expect the restore to take 4 hours as well. Now, imagine if that Exchange server went down at 11am on a Monday. This would mean that, at the very least, 300 employees would not be able to access email until 3pm that afternoon. That’s four hours of downtime for 300 employees. Regardless of how you do the math, that’s situation businesses do not want to be in.

 

Now let’s use the same real world example, but this time using NetVault FastRecover instead. With FlashRestore technology the Exchange server would be up and running in less than 30 seconds.

 

So how is FlashRestore possible?

 

To understand FlashRestore, it’s best to first start from a very high level. With a traditional restore or even a file copy, the files transported from location A to location B are not available until the operation has completed successfully. But FlashRestore does things a little different. On restore, a “template” of the file is created. To the OS or application looking to access the file, it appears as if the file is available to be accessed. This initial action occurs in less than 30 seconds. That means that the file itself can be accessed by a user or application through FlashRestore’s patented technology while the restore is still occurring in the background. Any additional changes to the file are being archived. Just before the restore is complete, the new/changed data is combined with the original data and put in the correct order. Once that’s complete, the entire file is restored.

 

Now that I've outlined how FlashRestore works from the highest level, I need go a little deeper into what makes FlashRestore unlike any other restore operation. Let’s continue to use the same example as above. Say FlashRestore creates the initial template file in under 30 seconds for an Exchange restore. FlashRestore has the intelligence to define what data it chooses to restore first. This means that if an Exchange user is trying to open specific email item that hasn't been restored into the template file yet, FlashRestore will automatically change the order of data being restored so that the requested data is made available first.

 

Now combine the ability to create a template file in seconds that spoofs the OS and applications into thinking the data is already there with the smarts to know what data should be restored first. That’s a powerful combination!

 

And the best thing? You don't have to take my word for it. So go ahead and try NetVault FastRecover today (risk free!) and see the difference for yourself.

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