How to Save $1 Million with Data Protection Optimized for Flash

Until disaster strikes, most organizations are reluctant to spend money on backup from already tight budgets.

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This is a post about how to save big money on data protection, but before we dive in, let me tell you a little story.

A few years ago, while attending a meeting at a law firm in a high-rise in Chicago, one of the attorneys began talking about a disaster that nearly wiped out the whole office, including the computer system. The attorney said they had experienced a “flood” in the office and he raised his hand high up on the window looking out on the famous Windy City skyline to indicate the high water mark.

I thought to myself, “Wait, I am not getting this… How is this possible? We’re on the 13th floor. Did I miss the news of some flood of Biblical proportions while I was back home in the U.K.?” The attorney saw the perplexed look on my face and then explained, “The overhead sprinklers switched on accidentally causing the inundation. It took us weeks to clean up.” Needless to say, those attorneys quickly realized the importance of backup.

Need for Backup Data Is Critical

Let’s be honest: No one wants to do backups. It’s like going to the doctor. You know that prevention is the best medicine, but it’s something we tend to put off for as long as possible. In the same way, companies need to maintain healthy data protection systems to ensure they have reliable access to their critical data whenever they need it. The ability to rapidly access and recover data after a disaster is crucial.

This is especially true when you need to monetize that data, for example, a film studio or record label deep into production on their latest projects. The studio must finish that movie or album to make a profit, so ensuring the data is protected is extremely important. Businesses may not think too much about backups, but they do need to think about protecting against such crises as user error or hardware or software failure, not to mention the threat of hacking, or, heaven forbid, a flood.

My story of the Biblical flood at the law firm is a real-world case study of the need for data protection. The trouble is, until disaster strikes, most people don’t want to spend cash on backup. One of the reasons we see a lack of interest in backup is the traditional cost and complexity of doing so in an era of tight budgets.

Backing Up Is Not Glamorous

I don’t want to bore you with the details, but if you look at how backups are handled, it’s just not all that glamorous. It’s a circuitous journey that starts with storage arrays, runs through your server, and then travels through your network to a media server or backup server. Eventually the data to be stored gets to its destination where it’s tucked away for future reference.

What’s more, the process just described is not always perfect or efficient. From more than 1400 customer assessments, we’ve found that more than one-third of the organizations participating have backup failure rates of more than 2%. This may not sound much, but what if your data is in that 2%? What’s also quite shocking is that more than 51% of organizations had backup jobs that lasted more than four days. Think about it. That’s an incredible timeline. Four days to do one backup? And here’s the kicker: sometimes you don’t even know what has—or has not—been backed up.

Industry researcher IDC found that the organizations it surveyed have anywhere from 13 to 120 copies of data scattered across their infrastructure. Indeed, it’s not uncommon for 1TB of data at the front end to equal 42TB of data stored at the back end when you take in daily, weekly, and monthly backups with replication copies.

Data Exploding at the Rate of 40% a Year

Meanwhile, Gartner, another industry researcher, said the flow of data is increasing almost 40% annually. As it grows, your backup jobs are going to take longer and longer.

We’re faced with big data growth, backups that take longer and longer (some of which fail), and the fact that we never delete anything, which adds to the overall burden of storage. What to do? One way to get out of this problem is to rethink how data storage is handled, and you can save large sums in the process.

The math is simple. Let’s start by noting that Gartner has determined that the cost of protecting 1TB of data averages $1260 a year. Let’s say you have 100TB of data. Gartner projects the growth of that data will run between 15% and 40% -- depending on the data type over the next five years.

If we simply look ahead over that five years, you’ll need to spend three times as much on your storage budget just to keep pace with the growth you’ll experience. It’s money you have to spend, there is no way around it. In the first year, you’ll spend $126,000 ($1260 X 100TB), and by the fifth year, allowing for a 5% price erosion per annum, $364,000 – more than $798,000 over the five years.

If you start with a slightly larger installed base, say 126TB of traditional database, you’ll spend even more to keep up with the growth—more than $1 million as you add up the numbers.

Of course, this is where HPE Storage can help.

How to Save $1 Million

You’ll save that $1 million if you move to data protection that features flat, simple data protection architecture. Our converged data protection solution integrated with all-flash 3PAR StoreServ Storage and coupled with our StoreOnce data protection and deduplication solution can give you that $1 million in savings.

With our integrated solution, you achieve up to 17-times faster backups with 5-times faster restores and spend hundreds of thousands dollars less in the process. We eliminate duplication and minimize what gets copied, speed up the data movement, simplify and increase the reliability of the mechanisms involved, and finally, simplify the model for data protection licensing.

As part of his on stage persona, a famous sad-faced U.S. comedian complained that he could never “get no respect.” He was never the hero, always the one being laughed at. Well, storage is a little like that: It just doesn’t get much respect. But with the advent of data protection optimized for all flash, the humble process of backing-up gets newfound respect and makes you the hero of your data center thanks to all that cash you’ve saved.

Want to learn more about flat backup with flash-integrated data protection, what we can do to help?

You can get more information here. Better yet, view the video we’ve produced on the topic, “1+1=3 whenyou integrate 3PAR + StoreOnce with RMC.” 

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