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Cohesity Brings All-in-One Backup and Recovery to Remote Offices

Cohesity's virtual appliance software runs on Cisco and HPE servers and manages, protects and secures data locally at remote and branch offices.

Cohesity last week introduced virtual appliance software that combines backup and recovery, file and object services, and cloud archival. The solution is aimed at remote offices and branch offices, which often don't have the IT staff or skills to recover from a failure of key business applications.

The virtual appliance, which runs on Cisco and Hewlett Packard Enterprise servers, is designed to manage, protect and secure data locally at remote locations. It supports backup and recovery for all types of data sources and granular recovery to any point in time.

While there are other products for backing up remote office/branch office (ROBO) locations, Cohesity's model goes beyond backup to address the growing challenges of business continuity/disaster recovery and data management closer to the edge.

"For years, backup was all we had for disaster recovery, but today, more and more companies are dependent on business IT system availability as much as protection against data loss," said Steve Hill, senior analyst for applied infrastructure and storage technologies at 451 Research. "Partnering with Cisco and HPE combines the data-focused approach of Cohesity’s virtual appliance software with the simplified acquisition and worldwide support offered by two of the largest vendors in the enterprise data center market."

It also addresses the latency and bandwidth issues that often trouble remote and branch office locations.

"Typically, organizations maintain anywhere from four to 15 copies of the same data, but sending duplicate data results in unnecessarily taxing the storage and network bandwidth," explained Raj Dutt, a senior director at Cohesity. Cohesity’s global variable-length dedupe and compression helps to reduce the amount of data that is migrated to the core/public cloud for replication or archival, he said. Plus, the solution has built-in throttle capabilities that allow the system to optimize data mobility over the WAN based on available bandwidth.

"Additionally, for recovery or moving data back to the ROBO from core/public cloud, instead of moving everything, with Cohesity’s powerful indexing and granular global file-level search, the IT operator can only bring the data they need, further reducing the impact on WAN bandwidth," Dutt said.

The solution also offers high data resilience, supports many protocols for files and objects, and can replicate or archive data to the core or the public cloud. Finally, it includes integrated security capabilities with an immutable file system, data encryption, anti-ransomware functions and file-level DataLock. DataLock is a new Cohesity feature released in January that enables security officers to "lock" a backup snapshot so it can't be modified or deleted by anyone.

After deployment, administrators can perform management operations centrally, such as creating policies for backup and recovery across multiple branch locations and branch replication policies that make sure a copy of the data is available from the data center or cloud in case of local failures, according to the company.

Cohesity claims that this new solution is the first to combine backup and recovery, file and object services, and cloud archival in one single platform optimized for ROBO locations.

The all-in-one nature of the product makes it a good choice for remote offices, Hill said.

"Remote offices typically don’t have the IT-savvy staffing needed to recover from a failure of key business applications, much less the skills to ensure that policies covering data security, protection, archiving and management are being followed," he said. "This is where the value proposition of a ROBO-oriented appliance approach really shines, by providing the convenience of single-pane-of-glass data protection and management in a turnkey, preintegrated appliance format based on a validated, tier-1 hardware platform."

While remote and branch offices are clearly the most obvious users of this type of platform, Hill said it could also be a good fit for protecting production applications outside the traditional data center.

"With the growing interest in internet of things [IoT], applications like manufacturing systems, building management and video-based security are requiring more processing closer to or at the edge, and many of those more sophisticated production systems will merit the same level of data protection as their data center-based counterparts," he explained. "They could benefit from the same turnkey convenience of a preintegrated physical appliance."

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