The issue with most approaches to backup and recovery is that most of them are overly focused on the data. Being able to recover data is important, but the reason the recovery process takes so long is that there are a lot of dependencies between applications that have to be restored in just the right order; otherwise, you might be able to recover all the data, but still have to wait for the applications that make use of that data to be restored.
The folks at Quest Software, however, have come up with a new, more application-centric approach to backup and recovery. The company this week released NetVault Extended Architecture that can be used on premise or as a gateway to any number of cloud storage service providers.
According to Greg Davoll, Quest director of product marketing for NetVault, NetVault Extended Architecture is designed to manage the backup and recovery process using a "units of work" approach that unifies the backup and recovery of application sets that are dependent on one another. For example, instead of just backing up Microsoft Exchange, IT organizations can back up Exchange, the Windows operating system and virtual machine it is running on, and any associated unified communications applications associated with it in one motion. That also means, says Davoll, just about anybody in the IT organization can use it, including database administrators and application administrators, versus requiring someone to specifically master a complex storage application.
Unlike storage vendors that primarily focus on data recovery, Davoll says Quest brings a more application-centric approach to the management of backup and recovery that better reflects the actual service delivery goals the IT organization needs to achieve in the event of a disaster, either large or small.
There's not much point to backing up anything when the recovery process can take days even after power is restored. In a world where recovery time objectives increasingly mean everything, it's clear that traditional approaches to backup and recovery are no longer up to the task.