Symantec Unveils Recovery Plan for Windows

Company shows recoverability capabilities buoyed by the Symantec Backup Exec 10d for Windows Server and the new LiveState Recovery Advanced Server Suite 6.0.

NEW YORK—Cementing its intent to quickly restore and secure disk-based Microsoft Windows platforms and environments, Symantec on Tuesday unveiled a new broad set of availability and recoverability capabilities buoyed by the availability of Symantec Backup Exec 10d for Windows Server and the introduction of the enhanced LiveState Recovery Advanced Server Suite 6.0.

Formally code named Panther, Symantec Backup Exec 10d—the d referring to disk—features a new Continuous Protection Server for backing up any Windows files. The product enables any file changes associated with applications, including Microsoft Exchange, SQL Server, Lotus Notes, etc., are continuously sent to the protection server.

The data can then be managed, retrieved and played back at a desired point to help eliminate reliance on tape-based recovery and increasingly shrinking backup windows, said Jeremy Burton, senior vice president, Data Management Group of Cupertino, Calif.-based Symantec Corp.

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Since the products backup server keeps data on disk in its native form, end-users are can use the tool to enlist a Google-type search to find, access and recover multiple versions of their own stored files using a standard Web browser. That in turn will help save resources and free up IT administrators to concentrate on other important tasks of running an enterprise, said Burton.

"What if we could allow end users to recover their own files? If you lost a file, why do you have to call IT to get it back? Its your files," said Burton, noting the common practice of full and incremental backups is on its way to extinction with Symantecs new Tivo-like continuous data backup technology. "We continuously track every single change at a block level and we move that across the network and we protect it."

Since users typically do not keep track of file changes by the minute but instead monitor different versions, the product can perform snapshots per hour or programmed to record for different intervals, such as every hour for instance.

Symantec Backup Exec 10d for Windows Servers will be available on Oct. 10. Pricing for the new product begins at $795. If customers upgrade from Backup Exec 10 to version 10d the Continuous Data Protection Server is offered at no charge. However, the Continuous Protection Agent required for the product costs $295. Symantec said it will offer a Continuous Protection Starter Pack featuring 3 agents, the Continuous Protection Server and one Backup Exec 10d license for $995.

Available for both servers and desktops or laptops, Symantec LiveState Recovery 6.0 suite safeguards organizations against a variety of data loss pitfalls including malicious attacks, environmental aspects, end-user mishaps, the need to maintain duplicate hardware in case of failure, and IT support across remote locations. The product upgrade is integrated with Symantec Backup Exec 10d to manage Windows desktop and server functions including patch management, provisioning, inventory and remote control independent of hardware configuration.

LiveState Recovery 6.0s Restore Anywhere capability features virtual conversion tools to satisfy customers running virtual environments on one or more machines. During a recovery situation the product enables IT administrators to take a physical machine and convert it to a virtualized format, or vice-versa from virtual to physical. This eliminates the need to stock redundant hardware.

Additionally, the product offers LiveState Recovery LightsOut Restore Option to simplify remote recovery of servers by utilizing integrated pcAnywhere technology. This allows the restoration of unattended servers, blade servers, and devices from remote locations.

Currently available, LiveState Recovery Advanced Server Suite 6.0 is priced at $1,695 and includes LiveState Recovery Advanced Server, Restore Anywhere Option, LightsOut Restore Option, LiveState Recovery Manager, and pcAnywhere for LiveState.

Jeffrey Griener, director of IT for Orum, Utah-based Clyde Companies Inc., said that managing recovery across 30 networked locations across Utah, Nevada, Wyoming and Arizona or his organizations construction-related companies is becoming a major challenge for his small IT staff.

"During high points of the construction season, were open 24 hours a day and our servers and systems also have to be going at the same pace," said Griener. "As a medium-sized company, I dont have a lot of budget to rely on redundant hardware lying around," to help in the event of a critical recovery.

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Compounding matters, Griener, who is running Backup Exec 10d for Windows Servers and LiveState Recovery Suite 6.0, says that tape is just becoming to difficult to use. "Its becoming almost impossible for tape to the job that we need it to do … moving away form tape in our day-to-day operation to a more disk-based system is a key component for us."

He said that LiveState Recovery Suite helped plug a major by quickly imaging Clyde Co.s Oracle databases and Citrix servers and enabling restoration of backup server form one platform to another, reducing server inventory in the process. Griener said using the updated LiveState he can restore Citrix servers in less than two hours, down drastically from the 16 man hours the process previously took.

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