Abiquo claims that its system can manage virtual resources, using business policies based on security and compliance needs, energy costs, utilization and load balancing. Xangati Inc.'s Xangati Management Dashboard offers real-time performance monitoring and provides in-depth information to uncover bottlenecks.
VMware claims that its snapshot capabilities make it easy to capture the data and settings in a primary site and replicate it to a disaster recovery environment, while its vCenter Site Recovery Manager automates key backup and recovery processes.
But replicating LUNs in a virtualized environment requires labeling the affected LUNs and adding the remote site name to their descriptions. "And then you have to tell VMware to only put those VMs and those apps" on the disaster recovery site, says O'Day. "All I want to say is, 'This application wants to have a copy of itself over in Salt Lake City and another copy in Indianapolis.' "
Products designed to tackle disaster recovery include CA ARCserve Backup, which can perform backup, failover, and other functions from physical-to-virtual, physical-to-physical, and virtual-to-virtual environments. Actifio Inc. claims that its VMware SRM tool offers a simple, low-cost way to replicate virtual machines by using commodity storage. Veeam Software's Backup and Replication 4.0 combines backup and replication, native support for thin-provisioned disks, and hot mirroring of active production environments.
Hewlett-Packard Co. says that its Data Protector software supports all top server virtualization platforms, backs up both physical and virtual machines from multiple vendors through one interface, and provides eight methods of data protection. Symantec NetBackup 7 and Backup Exec support virtual environments. Symantec's recently announced ApplicationHA is designed to enable customers to set up high-availability VM clusters. CommVault's Simpana 9 provides automatic, policy-based backups of VM data and a single console to manage backup of physical and virtual servers.
Quest's vRanger is designed to speed full, incremental and differential VMware backup and replication and reduce storage needs. Its vReplicator is built to replace virtual machine images across networks to speed disaster recovery. And its vConverter converts physical systems into virtual images, and vice versa.
Virtualization provides almost infinite ways to combine computing, network, and storage resources. Finding a single tool to handle every management need is a pipe dream, at least for now. Focus instead on identifying your most critical virtualization needs and finding the products that address them.
Scheier is a veteran technology writer. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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