'Backup and recovery is a lot like health insurance. '
SunGard Availability Services has been a longtime leader in providing a range of backup and recovery services. But now the company is leveraging virtualization and new integrated servers from Cisco to deliver a business continuity service as a cloud computing offering. SunGard executive vice president and CTO Indu Kodukula explains how virtualization is transforming backup and recovery.
CTO Edge: SunGard recently decided to offer a backup and recovery utility service around the Vblock virtualization platform that Cisco, EMC and VMware recently brought to market. Why do we need yet another approach to backup and recovery?
Kodukula: We're trying to offer customers a menu of options. Backup and recovery is a lot like health insurance, you only access after you fall sick. But the V-Block platform allows us to offer a continuous utility that kicks in the second you need it.
CTO Edge: Is virtualization transforming backup and recovery?
Kodukula: Absolutely. It use to be that if you wanted to provide high availability for 15 servers, you needed 15 servers. Now you can do it using three servers running virtual machines that you can then scale back up to 15 physical servers without any down time.
CTO Edge: Does that mean we should expect backup and recovery to be instantaneous?
Kodukula: That depends on the application. For modern applications it can really be a matter of minutes. But a lot of times business logic is running on older mainframes. You can bring back the Webs server tier pretty quickly, but without the access to the business logic on the mainframe the application is still going to be down.