Nobody has time for much of anything these days, least of all a mundane task like data backup and warehousing.
So it's no surprise that more and more warehousing and B&R platforms are starting to emphasize speed as much as capacity and management prowess as enterprises look to shore up their data-management capabilities.
Teradata took a major step forward this month with the 2580 data warehouse appliance. The device accommodates up to 1 TB drives, which bumps total system capacity to more than 500 TB. But the real advance here, according to CTOEdge's Dan Berthiaume, is the combination of the new Database 13 warehousing software and the hyper-thread capability of the Intel Nehalem processors. The combo provides for markedly faster query performance and data mining, plus the ability to allow multiple users to access various versions of the system without a hardware refresh.
Teradata is augmenting the 2580 with the new 5600 appliance, which also uses quad-core Nehalems, but is backed by the Enterprise Storage 6844 storage subsystem, said to increase storage throughput by almost a third. The system also includes the BYNET networking component that more than doubles processor interconnect bandwidth used for backup, archiving and restoration applications. Look for the company to roll out all-SSD appliances later this year, says Information Week's Antone Gonsalves.
Deft use of deduplication and multi-node architecture can also make a difference, not just in speed but across a number of performance matrices. Sepaton just unveiled a multi-node dedupe solution, the S2100-MS2, built on the company's DeltaStor software. The MS-2 scales up to 192 TB of raw data and hits ingest speeds of 1,200 MBps, while the DeltaRemote module supports up to six nodes for Symantec's NetBackup, IBM's TSM or EMC's NetWorker platforms, and offers the ability to conduct simultaneous replication, backup and dedupe.
Virtualization has also had a major effect on backup speeds. The Pension Trust, which manages retirement accounts in the UK for educational and non-profit organizations, saw its performance nearly double after deploying the latest update to the backup and replication solution from Veeam Software. The system supports the vSphere and vStorage platforms, enabling full backup of an 800 GB main file server in about 10 minutes. It also requires about half the storage space as previous solutions and provides a file system self-cleaning function that eliminates nearly a full day of manual cleaning and monitoring.
Data is the lifeblood of any enterprise, so it would be a mistake to place speed above all other considerations when evaluating warehousing solutions. After all, lightening-fast backup won't be worth a hill of beans if the data is unusable on recovery.
That said, lengthy manual processes not only tie up vital system resources, but human resources as well. And less time spent on tedious jobs like backup means more time for more productive, value-enhancing pursuits.