Array-Based Data Protection

By Bobby Crouch  |  Posted 2010-01-19 Print this article Print

Array-based data protection

Some organizations have opted to replicate to array-based disk mirror or snapshot volumes at a disaster recovery (DR) site in order to speed up data recovery. Array-based snapshots improve recovery points by retaining more frequent data changes between backups. However, because most disk arrays do not communicate across vendor barriers, array-based replication requires a dedicated, homogenous infrastructure at both the primary and DR sites-a major drawback. In addition to creating vendor lock-in, array-based replication consumes a great deal of network bandwidth.

Failover processes between sites can be complex and error-prone, and failback processes are often insufficiently planned or go untested. For these reasons, replication is usually limited to Tier 1 storage, while Tier 2 and Tier 3 storage data remains unprotected and prone to loss or corruption.

Lastly, the integrity of array-based snapshot recovery points is usually limited to the last good snapshot (which could be several hours behind).

CDP technology brings it all together

The CDP concept has emerged as a way to better protect data and improve its recoverability, leveraging disk-based data protection to enhance the effectiveness of tape backup. By offering continuous journaling, CDP technology protects data for a much longer period of time than tape backup, reducing the required frequency of tape backups. CDP provides the capability to replicate and maintain multiple versions of data at local and remote DR sites for online data retention and recovery to any known good point in time.

When used properly, CDP technology can unify local and remote data protection processes, combining replication and backup into a comprehensive solution that minimizes data loss, speeds recovery, and reduces or eliminates the need for tape-based data protection.

Bobby Crouch is the Product Marketing Manager at FalconStor Software. He is a 20-year technology industry veteran, with roles ranging from development engineering to sales and marketing. Bobby's expertise extends from microprocessor architecture, servers, networking, enterprise software and storage. He can be reached at

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