Most organizations already use a hybrid cloud in some way. Of the cloud’s available offerings, cloud object storage represents the one that many use first. Organizations often initially move and store their archival and backup data on cloud object storage. Yet when they do, many also experience sticker shock. To minimize these costs, organizations need to choose a deduplication solution that embraces a hybrid cloud strategy.
Cloud Storage Limitations of Physical Deduplication Appliances
Organizations can readily find deduplication appliances from multiple providers that support storing multiple petabytes of data on cloud storage. However, storing data on cloud storage represents only one consideration associated with using deduplication appliances to perform this task. Organizations will find hardware appliances possess the following three limitations:
- Hardware dependency. To obtain all the software functionality that a deduplication appliance offers, organizations must acquire the physical appliance. This approach becomes problematic in cloud data centers. Cloud providers rarely, if ever, permit deployment of third-party hardware appliances in their data centers.
- Limited choice and feature set if hosted on cloud VMs. Hardware deduplication providers do offer options that allow their software to run on a few approved cloud virtual machines (VMs). However, these VMs offer fewer software features than on the provider’s hardware appliance.
- Cloud storage extension. Some hardware deduplication appliances extend their appliance’s ability to manage and store data on cloud storage. This approach works reasonably well for on-premises data recoveries. However, organizations will struggle to restore data in the cloud since they cannot place an appliance there.
These three concerns exemplify why organizations should look to a data deduplication solution that embraces a hybrid cloud strategy. In this hybrid environment a software-defined storage (SDS) deduplication solution trumps a hardware appliance in two key use cases.
The Two Advantages of an SDS Deduplication Solution
SDS deduplication solutions provide two specific advantages when compared to using hardware appliances to store and recover data on cloud storage.
1. SDS deduplication solutions may be deployed on-premises, in the cloud, or both.
Once organizations store deduplicated data on cloud storage, they need that solution to retrieve the data. Only that specific deduplication solution, be it a hardware appliance or an SDS deduplication solution, can recover it.
This may become a requirement when an organization wants or needs to retrieve and reconstruct deduplicated data in the cloud. Organizations can meet this condition when using an SDS deduplication solution. It can run either in the cloud or on-premises. Further, organizations may move the SDS deduplication solution between them.
This flexibility to move it may become imperative when recovering in the cloud. When reconstructing deduplicated data from cloud storage, the same deduplication solution that stored it there needs to retrieve it. This holds true whether using a hardware appliance or an SDS deduplication solution to perform the recovery.
2. SDS deduplication solutions may be deployed as backup targets in the cloud.
Organizations still need to back up applications and data they host in the cloud. Further, many back up and recover these applications and data using the same methodology they do in their data center. This requires they have a deduplication target deployed in their cloud.
General-purpose cloud providers only permit the deployment of software in their data centers. As a result, organizations may only deploy SDS deduplication solutions in these clouds as backup targets. They have few or no options to deploy hardware deduplication appliances in the cloud.
Embracing a Hybrid Cloud Strategy Requires an SDS Deduplication Solution
Of the many available offerings from cloud providers, organizations have embraced cloud storage for practical reasons. It provides them access to durable, highly available, resilient, and scalable storage for their archival and backup data. Further, cloud storage remains affordable over time if organizations deduplicate the archival and backup data they store on it.
However, organizations that deduplicate data stored on cloud storage as part of their hybrid cloud strategy must do so thoughtfully. Both hardware deduplication appliances and SDS deduplication solutions offer options to store deduplicated data on cloud storage.
However, storing deduplicated data on cloud storage represents only one half of the equation. Organizations must also think about the environments that they might protect and into which they need to recover deduplicated data.
These requirements quickly reveal the need for an SDS deduplication solution such as Quest QoreStor. Storing deduplicated data on cloud storage only gets organizations so far. They must also select a data deduplication that positions them to recover both on-premises and in the cloud as part of their hybrid cloud strategy. Only an SDS deduplication solution satisfies all these objectives.
Keep Up-To-Date With DCIG
To be notified of new DCIG articles, reports, and webinars, sign up for DCIG’s free weekly Newsletter.
To learn about DCIG’s future research and publications, see the DCIG Editorial Calendar.
Technology providers interested in licensing DCIG TOP 5 reports or having DCIG produce custom reports, please contact DCIG for more information.
Quest is a client of DCIG.This blog entry is an excerpt of a longer DCIG report entitled A Data Deduplication Strategy that Embraces Cloud Storage Adoption.
It made be accessed by following this link to a trusted third-party site.