A few years ago, I had stuff all over the place, and admittedly, I could never find anything. I had calendars, clocks, phones, and radios in every room. I had to carry a calendar to keep track of my life. I had five flashlights around the house, but somehow when I needed one, they’d gone missing. My problem was sprawl.
Then, I bought a smartphone; suddenly, my life was simpler. With a smartphone, I always had a phone–it was in my pocket. I didn’t need to wear a wrist watch or carry an annual calendar. And most of all, when I needed a flashlight, I was ready. I could consolidate my sprawl in my smartphone.
When we asked Veritas customers about their IT challenges, the proliferation of IT infrastructure was often at the top of their list. They had a proliferation of data protection solutions from multiple vendors, and when they described the state of their IT environments, I realized they had a sprawl problem similar to mine. They had data center sprawl.
What is data center sprawl?
Data center sprawl is caused by many reasons. Different departments in an organization have specific data protection needs and require a unique data protection environment. And when organizations grow by acquisition, they frequently inherit data protection environments that need support. Finally, to keep up with a fast-moving business, it’s often easier to add a new data protection environment than expand an existing one.
Data center sprawl reduces agility and increases cost. The proliferation of interconnected infrastructure needs to be managed and supported. Upgrades to systems must be qualified, and any expansion or addition must be tested to see how it affects the rest of the infrastructure. This takes time and slows the response to changes in the environment.
Addressing data center sprawl, with Veritas Flex Appliance
Our customers needed to consolidate data center sprawl – they needed a different kind of solution. In response, we considered, “What if we combined the configurability and agility of virtual containers with the proven data protection capabilities of NetBackup Software?” And this was the genesis of the Flex Appliance.
The Flex Appliance includes a layer of software that manages NetBackup components in containers. You can configure a data protection environment from a menu of NetBackup containers on the Flex appliance, with the capacity to support multiple environments. Because a data protection environment is simply a configuration of containers, a new environment can be created in minutes, using software rather than hardware.
The Flex Appliance solves data center sprawl. With Flex Appliance, IT managers can consolidate, reducing racks of equipment into a single appliance, ultimately reducing costs. They can create agile new data protection environments in minutes rather than hours or days.