Highly Reliable Systems: Removable Disk Backup & Recovery


Monthly Archives: February 2015

Getting Data Out of the Cloud Before Disaster

February 18th, 2015 by

Getting Data Out of the Cloud Before Disaster Recovery

Cloud data rains back down at a drizzle, when you really need a downpour.

By Olin Coles for Highly Reliable Systems

As the size of information stored in the cloud grows increasingly larger, IT managers must plan on getting data out of the cloud when it’s critically needed during disaster recovery. For some businesses, the cloud is a place to deposit a second copy of data already retained locally. For others the cloud is primary storage, where unique data is created and modified. Problems arise in both cases: when local data is lost due to fire, flood, or theft, when the data is too large for a timely transfer across limited Internet bandwidth, or when a cloud provider shuts down. This all begs the question: is redundant data in place?

This point was driven home in 2014 when British hosting company CodeSpaces.com was driven out of business due to an entire loss of all its cloud data. An anonymous hacker gained access into their Amazon S3 control panel, and locked administrators out of their own data. The hacker then bribed the company, but rather than pay Code Spaces attempted to recover control themselves. The hacker deleted all their data, including the copies stored in redundant data centers. According to Code Spaces officials: “he had removed all EBS snapshots, S3 buckets, all AMI’s, some EBS instances and several machine instances. In summary, most of our data, backups, machine configurations and offsite backups were either partially or completely deleted.”

High-Rely RAIDFrame Plus Server Backup NAS Appliance

High-Rely RAIDFrame Plus Server Backup

A few cloud providers offer redundant data security, albeit for a premium. So long as time is not a factor, this policy could work for those using the cloud for secondary storage. However, when the aforementioned problems arise, getting data out of the cloud quickly becomes a necessity. Retrieving full data sets can take weeks, penalizing profit and productivity at a time when recovery delays are unacceptable. This is especially true when getting big data out of cloud. Some keen planners have taken to ‘reverse cloud backup’ strategies to solve this problem, storing big data to their cloud provider and then backing up locally for quicker access during recovery. This is especially important for data that is created in the cloud.

Hosted email, CMS websites, and websites such as salesforce.com are all obvious examples of primary data that is created and lives in the cloud. It is well documented that salesforce backs up its server data, but not in such a way that makes it possible for an end-user to restore files when needed. If a customer mistakenly deletes data on salesforce, some claim it costs $10,000 or more to restore. Even so, the entire data set would be rolled back to the last good backup completed, eliminating all recently added data. The lesson here is that you should always treat data as your responsibility, even when it’s located with a trusted cloud vendor. High-Rely recently discussed this topic in a separate post: Reverse Backup from Cloud to Local Disks, which explains the process for Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, DreamHost DreamCloud, and Dropbox.

A leading strategy has been to use a local server backup appliance to both push/pull data to the cloud. An online service like Dropbox may seem to be self-replicating because its copies are synchronized to every device with access to the account, however this method is not always beneficial. It might make sense to pull data from the cloud on a less instantaneous schedule, say once per week, but then it also makes sense to pull this delayed Dropbox data from multiple accounts in the enterprise to one central location. This scheduled replication ensures that data corruption and viruses are given discovery time before they’ve been propagated everywhere. Another reason to use a reverse cloud backup appliance is to improve the Recovery Time Objective (RTO) of a full restore.

In the server backup space it’s well known that retrieving Terabytes of data can take weeks, which explains why retrieving big data from the cloud is viewed as a last resort. But if a server backup appliance is configured to regularly pull data out of the cloud, then restores can happen much more quickly. The High-Rely Netswap Plus server backup appliance can be easily configured to automatically replicate and retrieve data out of the cloud, and utilizes an incremental approach to minimize bandwidth use and ensures data is redundantly stored on highly removable local disks. These removable disks provide an extra level of security, referred to as an “air gap”, that allows data to be stored off-line and out of reach of hackers. This functionality for getting data out of the cloud currently exists on NetSwap Plus and RAIDFrame Plus products, and includes Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, DreamHost DreamCloud, and Dropbox. With a 30-day money back guarantee, High-Rely could be your answer to making backup data last forever.

Posted in Blog

30TB RAIDPac Backup Drive Announced

February 18th, 2015 by

30TB RAIDPac the World’s Largest Backup Storage Drive

RAIDPac Drive Enclosure

Removable RAIDPac Unit

Highly Reliable Systems, the innovative American-made server backup storage experts, are offering their 230TB RAIDPac, Removable Drive units to support their upcoming 120TB RAIDFrame DAS backup device. These portable RAIDPac storage devices combine the capacity of three drives in a RAID-0 array, or capacity of two drives in RAID-5 mode, by using cutting-edge 10-Terabyte SATA hard disks.

“Our Removable RAIDPac drives allow you to remove and hot-swap these units from our RAIDFrame backup appliances, and also use them for backup and replication tasks or disaster recovery needs.” said Darren McBride, Chief Executive Officer at Highly Reliable Systems. “Each RAIDPac is fully self-contained can be accessed in the field by plugging either USB 3.0 or SATA cable and power at the back of the unit to become the world’s largest removable drive.”

High-Rely is the first company to offer 30-Terabyte RAIDPac Removable backup storage modules for purchase in 2017. These Removable RAIDPac drives can be used for offsite backup, or to rapidly seed replication to the Cloud. Transportable media are the fastest way to recover from a disaster, while avoiding the reduced restoration speed and bandwidth-intensive nature of Internet-based Cloud storage.

This development now enables High-Rely to offer up to five 30TB RAIDPac drives in their direct-attached RAIDFrame backup device, generating 150-Terabytes of storage in RAID-0 or 100TB in RAID-5 mode. On their network-attached (NAS) four-bay RAIDFrame Plus backup appliances this amounts to as much as 120TB of available combined capacity for long-term backup retention and archive storage sets. These RAIDPac storage modules represent the largest removable drives on the market, each equipped with its own independent RAID-0/5 controller. RAIDFrame appliances are available with Intel Xeon processors, up to 32GB DDR3 system memory, failover hot-swap power supply units, and dual 10-Gigabit Ethernet.

RAIDFrame server backup appliances are immediately available through partner resellers starting at $2999. High-Rely offers a wide range of network-attached and direct-attached backup storage solutions. Please visit https://www.high-rely.com/products/ for more information on our product line.

About Highly Reliable Systems, Inc.

Highly Reliable Systems is a talented group of engineers, technicians, and backup storage experts based in Reno, Nevada, USA, that have provided computer backup solutions since 2003. High-Rely manufactures durable American-made backup devices utilizing removable drives and network-attached auto backup enclosures. Available through channel partners, RAIDFrame and NetSwap BDR backup solutions are cost effective, reliable, and can be used in most any environment.

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Media Contact:

Kathy Raye
775-329-5139
kr@high-rely.com

Posted in News

Reverse Backup from Cloud to Local Disks

February 15th, 2015 by

Reverse Cloud Backup from Amazon S3 to Local Disks

By Olin Coles for Highly Reliable Systems

Not long ago network administrators would backup their data to tape storage, and later onto hard disks. As managed service providers evolved with technology, IT professionals began replicating to the cloud. Online storage services such as Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, DreamHost DreamCloud, and Dropbox became popular destinations for offsite data retention. It seemed like such a good idea at the time, since local disks were small and cloud servers were large. Storage technology has continued to improve, and 8TB hard disk drives are now available for local retention. As free space has increased on servers, so have the storage needs of its users. Internet bandwidth has not kept up with improvements in storage technology, and slow speeds or high prices have made it necessary to “reverse cloud” backup data from online containers to local disks.

IT professionals are starting to think about how to backup from cloud to local disks – a process called reverse cloud backup. High-Rely NetSwap backup devices are designed for this task, and enable support for both backups to the cloud and reverse backup from the cloud. NetSwap makes it simple to reverse cloud backup from Amazon S3 to disk, so that a high-speed local copy of cloud data is available for disaster recovery.  A few cloud-to-cloud backup services exist, but they have the disadvantage of incurring additional monthly fees and inherently slower performance of the cloud.

Reverse Cloud Backup Amazon S3 NetSwap Setup Screen

Reverse Cloud Backup NetSwap Setup Screen

The NetSwap Plus backup NAS can quickly transfer data to and from multiple Amazon S3 buckets (or Google Cloud Storage, DreamHost DreamCloud, and Dropbox to name a few). NetSwap will allow the users to “reverse cloud” backup Amazon S3 and others to local disk. This creates the potential for spinning up Amazon EC2 virtual machines under Xen on the NetSwap appliance for testing or disaster recovery at much faster speeds.

As previously mentioned, the reverse is also true: the NetSwap backup appliance will upload data to cloud providers such as Amazon S3. This allows network administrators to use any server backup software they choose to protect multiple servers, and use High-Rely NetSwap backup appliances as the destination which will subsequently upload that data to cloud storage. NetSwap’s bi-directional backup software connects directly to Amazon S3 accounts (among many others), and securely transfers backup files to and from the cloud.

The reverse cloud backup process is simple. To begin the reverse cloud backup of an Amazon S3 bucket, simply connect your AWS account to a replication job within the NetSwap software as illustrated above. This feature is available on NetSwap Plus, NetSwap Mini, and RAIDFrame Plus backup appliances with up to 72TB of storage capacity. The embedded NetSwap software comes with a step-by-step Wizard that will guide you through replication and reverse cloud backup processes. If a problem should ever occur, High-Rely offers US-based technical support to guide you through the process.

Enterprise backup requires set-and-forget simplicity. As larger amounts of data gets stored up to multiple cloud accounts, it will become increasingly difficult for IT professionals to ensure that corporate intellectual property is protected and accounted for. NetSwap provides an automatic reverse cloud backup solution from Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, DreamHost DreamCloud, and Dropbox, preserving data on removable hard drives located on-site for faster access and disaster recovery. The practice of reverse cloud backups makes sense for all kinds of online storage, such as: websites, hosted email, recorded video, and other mission critical cloud data.

Posted in Blog

How to Backup Amazon S3 with Reverse Cloud

February 13th, 2015 by

How to Backup Amazon S3 with Reverse Cloud

By Kevin Hamacek for Highly Reliable Systems

Many IT professionals are starting to think about how to backup Amazon S3 for local retention – i.e. how to do reverse cloud backup. If you’ve wondered how to backup from Amazon S3 buckets to disk so that there is a high speed local copy of cloud data, the NetSwap Plus product might be for you. While several cloud to cloud backup services exist, they have the disadvantage of incurring additional monthly fees and lower performance of the cloud.

Reverse Cloud Backup Amazon S3 NetSwap Setup Screen

Reverse Cloud Backup Amazon S3 NetSwap Setup Screen

The NetSwap and RAIDFrame backup NAS products can do data transfer to and from Amazon S3, or from multiple Amazon accounts and S3 buckets.  The replication tracks incremental changes. The appliances will allow the user to “reverse cloud” backup Amazon S3 to local disk. This creates the potential for spinning up Amazon EC2 virtual machines under Xen on the NetSwap appliance for testing at faster speeds.

Of course, the reverse is also true – the backup appliance can upload data to Amazon S3. This allows network administrators to use any server backup software they choose to protect multiple servers using the NetSwap Plus backup appliance as the destination, and subsequently upload the data to Amazon S3. NetSwap’s bi-directional backup software connects directly to an Amazon S3 account, and securely transfers backup files and folders to and from the cloud, serving as a transport between your backup NAS device and your Amazon S3 storage account.

To start the reverse cloud backup of an Amazon S3 bucket, simply connect your AWS account to a replication job within the NetSwap Plus as illustrated above. This feature is also available on RAIDFrame server backup appliance for those who need to store up to 72TB of data. The software comes with a step-by-step Wizard that will guide you through replication and reverse cloud backup Amazon S3 setup processes.

Enterprise backup requires set and forget simplicity. As more data is stored in multiple clouds using a variety of login accounts, it will become increasingly difficult for IT professionals to ensure that corporate intellectual property is protected. Providing an automated reverse cloud to backup Amazon S3 ensures that data also lives on a removable hard drive located on-site. Expect the reverse cloud backup concept to be extended to all kinds of data such as websites, CRM, email accounts, and other mission critical cloud data.

Posted in Blog

High-Rely Debuts Amazon S3 Reverse Cloud Backup Device

February 12th, 2015 by

High-Rely Debuts Amazon S3 Reverse Cloud Backup Device

NetSwap enables local Cloud server backup for Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, DreamHost DreamCloud, and Dropbox.

RENO, NV – 12 FEB 2015 – Highly Reliable Systems, the innovative American-made server backup storage experts, today announced immediate availability for their NetSwap reverse Cloud server backup NAS. The High-Rely NetSwap family of network-attached appliances provide Reverse Cloud server backup for many popular storage accounts: Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, DreamHost DreamCloud, and Dropbox.

High-Rely NetSwap Plus 8-Bay Backup NAS

NetSwap Plus 8-Bay Backup NAS

NetSwap is a purpose-built backup appliance that allows multiple Amazon accounts and S3 buckets to be “pulled down” to local disk, and automatically mirrored to a second highly-removable drive. Local storage of Cloud server data provides insurance against Internet outages, malicious or accidental deletion, viruses or malware, and other Cloud mishaps. NetSwap data replication features are bi-directional, enabling this Cloud server backup appliance to be used for local computer or server backup and then configured to automatically upload the data up to Cloud accounts.

“Although redundant Cloud storage is considered reasonably safe, cases exist where companies have been put out of business by hackers, bugs, or accidents. Our NetSwap backup appliances allow corporate users to consolidate multiple Amazon S3 accounts and storage buckets onto our auto backup device. This gives administrators the physical comfort of having their data on one or more local hard drives” said Tom Hoops, Chief Technology Officer at Highly Reliable Systems. “It makes sense for businesses with large amounts of data in the Cloud to retain a local copy for both safety and high speed access. Some customers worry about compliance and long term data retention for HIPAA, SOX, and other laws. Complying with discovery requests during lawsuits is made much easier with a local copy of the data and our appliance insures those copies are constantly updated, even when multiple sources are involved. The reverse Cloud backup features of the NetSwap backup appliance were designed to address all these issues with minimal intervention from IT.”

High-Rely network appliances that feature Reverse Cloud Backup are available in storage capacities up to 48TB on NetSwap models, and 72TB on RAIDFrame models. The NetSwap backup NAS device utilizes Gigabit Ethernet network attachment, and support for: CIFS network shares, NFS Linux/Unix/VMware shares, and iSCSI block level drive access. Many NetSwap models include multiple levels of RAID to insure long-term protection and data retention. Integrated Watchdog circuitry monitors each NetSwap backup NAS for even higher reliability, immediately notifying administrators whenever an alert occurs. High-Rely will soon offer a NetSwap models with virtualization, enabling Amazon AWS virtual machines to be spun-up under Xen from within the appliance.

High-Rely Cloud server backup NAS devices are immediately available through partner resellers starting at $849. High-Rely offers a wide range of network-attached and direct-attached backup storage solutions. Please visit http://high-rely.com for more information on our product line.

About Highly Reliable Systems, Inc.

Highly Reliable Systems is a talented group of engineers, technicians, and backup storage experts based in Reno, Nevada, USA, that have provided computer backup solutions since 2003. High-Rely manufactures durable American-made backup devices utilizing highly-removable drives and network-attached auto backup enclosures. Available through channel partners, RAIDFrame and NetSwap BDR backup solutions are cost effective, reliable, and can be used in most any environment.

Media Contact:

Olin Coles
Technical Marketing Director
775-329-5139 *101
media@high-rely.com

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Posted in News

18TB RAIDPac: Largest Backup Drive in the World

February 5th, 2015 by

High-Rely RAIDPac Delivers 18TB of Unmatched Backup Storage

18TB RAIDPac: Largest Hard Drive in the WorldAs hard disk drive technology has improved, so have storage capacities for the devices that use them. The 18TB High-Rely RAIDPac currently demonstrates this point by combining three disks into a powered RAID-0/1/5 highly-removable enclosure to form the World’s largest backup drive.

The portable RAIDPac backup drive allows for hot removal and swap within the RAIDFrame computer backup system, making them a perfect fit for daily backup tasks and disaster recovery needs. Modular RAIDPac drives are extremely durable, and conveniently accessed in the field via external Molex power connection and either USB 3.0 or SATA cable.

A typical hard disk consists of several storage platters enclosed in a powered drive chassis with a SATA connector attached to an integrated logic board. The 18TB RAIDPac is very similar by design, with each drive consisting of several hard disks housed in a powered chassis with built-in storage controller connected to external SATA and USB 3.0 ports.

As such, each 18TB RAIDPac backup drive connects to and is detected by any modern computer system as a large single drive. It’s the largest portable drive currently available, in fact. Each RAIDPac monitors the health of the SATA hard drives it contains in real time. In the event of drive failure, the RAIDPac will give an audible alarm. For convenience, failed disks can be hot-swapped from the front of the RAIDPac enclosure.

RAIDPac is available in 18-Terabyte, 12TB, and 8TB capacities to High-Rely’s authorized channel partners.

Posted in Spotlight