CommVault Systems has enhanced Version 9 of its Simpana data management software, which it first announced in October 2010. Major new features in the software include OnePass, which will back up server data, archive it and report on it simultaneously. The company said the process could take less than half the time of separate processes.
For PCs, CommVault introduced Edge Protection, which backs up data on devices such as laptops and desktops, using deduplication, and gives users the ability to perform their own data recovery through any Windows, iOS or Android device. The company also made improvements to SnapProtect, which accelerates data recovery through the use of data snapshots.
Sheila Childs, research VP of storage technologies and strategies for Gartner, is particularly interested in the OnePass feature. "One of the most challenging issues in managing data growth is managing the number of copies," she says. "Creating separate copies of data for backup and archive adds to this problem. The OnePass feature will go a long way toward alleviating this redundancy. Backups should be used for recovery; archives are used for discovery, compliance, historical preservation. What differs is retention. Being able to assign a different retention period to a single copy of data, and change that retention over time or generate an index of a subset of the data over time, makes it easier to manage backup and archiving holistically."
In contrast, Rachel Dines, senior analyst of infrastructure and operations for Forrester, was particularly interested in Edge Protection. "Laptop/desktop backup and mobile file access are really hot topics," she says. "To my knowledge, CommVault is the first of the big server backup vendors that is offering the capability of access from mobile devices to files that have been backed up on PCs. I believe that the markets for PC backup and mobile file syncing and sharing are rapidly converging, and this release shows that CommVault is aware and keeping up with these key trends in mobility and workforce computing."
Other new features include improved integration with Microsoft's SharePoint, which means that users can now recover their archived data from within SharePoint rather than having to use the CommVault Simpana interface, says Jeff Echols, senior director of product marketing and business development for the Oceanport, N.J., company. This is because Simpana is now integrated with Microsoft's Blob Storage application programming interface, he says. Other new features in edge data protection include creating content index data, which is intended to help with e-discovery requests, he says. CommVault has increased the number of third-party platforms supported by SnapProtect, and the company has opened the API to hardware manufacturers so they can develop support themselves, he says.
The company does not use dot-version numbers and says that this was simply the next release of Simpana 9, encompassing several service packs, and that existing users would be automatically updated for free. Starting prices for the software range from $7,000 to $17,0000, and pricing is based upon capacity.
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