Over the span of a couple of years, a new type of data protection has rapidly emerged and become a center-stage requirement for businesses of all sizes. The technology is virtual machine (VM) backup, and with the rise of virtualization, it has become nearly mandatory for businesses to consider VM backup if they are deploying any type of server virtualization.
There are two reasons for this:
First, traditional backup is too resource intensive for the virtual infrastructure. It runs into bottlenecks such as simultaneous CPU, memory load, and network and storage IO. Pulling backup data across networks and storage fabrics is no small task. Using traditional backup agents to pull data for 20 or 30 virtual machines across the limited Ethernet and/or Fiber Channel ports of a single physical server can make backup nearly impossible, especially during limited windows of time during which daily backup must take place.
Second, virtualization opens up new opportunities to perform more efficient backup. Technologies like VMware vSphere snapshots with guest OS integration and Changed Block Tracking (CBT) can be used to create backups that are faster, more capacity efficient, and more easily executed than ever before. The leading vendors in this space have vastly extended virtual backup capabilities through features like instant boot from backup, easy replication and data movement, and more.