Dell EMC Targets Midsize Companies With Data Protection Appliance

The vendor’s IDPA DP4400 offers the midmarket and SMBs a 2U system that has the performance and efficiency they need and at a price they can afford.

Dell Data Protection Appliance

Dell EMC is rolling out a new data protection appliance aimed at midsize organizations that officials said have been squeezed between high-priced and complex systems aimed at larger enterprises and low-cost machines that often can lack the necessary performance and efficiency.

The vendor’s IDPA (Integrated Data Protection Appliance) DP4400 is a 2U (3.5-inch) system that is based on Dell EMC’s Intel-powered PowerEdge 14th generation servers and offers a combination of backup, deduplication, replication and recovery, according to company officials. It also leverages the cloud with disaster recovery and long-term data retention in the cloud.

“The IDPA DP4400 was specifically designed to tackle the major requirements of mid-size organizations—simplicity, performance, efficiency, and low cost to protect,” Beth Phalen, president and general manager of Dell EMC’s Data Protection Division, wrote in a post on the company blog. “These same features and capabilities also make the product ideal for enterprise remote and branch office (ROBO) deployments.”

Phalen noted a recent ESG study done for Dell EMC that said that 63 percent of IT executives surveyed said data protection is among the top three initiatives necessary for digital transformation, given the increased importance of data in the modern data center and the massive amounts of data that are being generated and need to be processed, analyzed and stored. Data is key in helping companies make smart business decisions, with 72 percent of executives at companies that have undergone a digital transformation saying their companies are good at using data to make these decisions. That compares with 4 percent from legacy companies, according to the ESG study.

Business officials also want to know that they can protect and restore data through simplified and powerful technologies, she wrote.

Among the features aimed at midsize companies and ROBO locations are an HTML5 user interface for simplified data protection monitoring, management and reporting; 55:1 average deduplication; 5 petabytes of usable data capacity; native cloud-tier for long-term data retention; and native cloud disaster recovery to Amazon Web Services (AWS). Combined, customers have access to 14.4PB of usable capacity.

In addition, there is support for such modern applications as MySQL and MongoDB physical and virtual databases and a range of hypervisors that include VMware’s vSphere and Microsoft’s Hyper-V. The IDPA DP4400 appliance also takes advantage of NVMe flash, which shortens the amount of time needed for backing up by up to two times and which supports seven times more backup streams. NVMe flash also backs up only deduplicated data, requiring up to 98 percent bandwidth, according to Dell EMC officials.

“Using NVMe flash for instant access and restore, as well as boosted application-direct performance, this appliance delivers high performance to help customers meet the most stringent SLAs [service-level agreements] and RPOs [recovery point objectives],” Phalen wrote.

The system, which is available now starting at less than $80,000, also is optimized for environments using VMware technologies, including use of the native vSphere UI through which administrators can perform various tasks. Those include using vRealization automation to ease managing and protecting virtual environments, hands-free administration of new virtual machines (VMs) through a dynamic policy feature, and predefined policies that can be automatically assigned when the appliance detects a new VM environment.

Being able to provision VMs is also important to companies as they transform their operations for the more data-driven era, according to the ESG study. For executives from transformed companies who were surveyed, 33 percent said they can fulfill a VM provisioning request in less than 4 hours. For those from legacy organizations, that number was 8 percent.

The DP4400 also can protect up to five times more VMs and provide faster VMware backups and recoveries than competitive 2U systems, Phalen wrote.