EMC boosts Data Domain capacity with new clustered DD880

EMC has refreshed its Data Domain deduplication portfolio, doubling capacity and adding encryption.

Heavy users of data deduplication have two new options, after EMC introduced a new, clustered, deduplication array.

The new EMC Data Domain Global Deduplication Array (GDA) is a clustered pair of DD880 appliances with a single controller, a configuration EMC says can handle 12.8 terabytes per hour of throughput and provide “up to 14.2 petabytes (PB) of logical backup capacity.”

Available in the second quarter, the new device is currently supported by Symantec’s NetBackup and Backup Exec products, thanks to an OpenStorage plug-in. EMC’s own NetWorker backup software will support the device “later in 2010,” the company said in a press release.

Enterprise Strategy Group Senior Consulting Analyst Brian Babineau commented on the new product in EMC’s release, stating: “Figuring out how to get backups done within the allotted period of time in the face of data growth is still the biggest data protection challenge that organizations face according to our research. With their Data Domain Global Deduplication Array, EMC has far exceeded the inline deduplication performance benchmark it set with its previous top-of-line Data Domain system, but more importantly, the company has given customers a way to protect more of their data in a shorter period of time. We expect more companies to evaluate integration between backup software and deduplication storage to maximize these performance levels and data reduction results while consolidating administrative tasks.”

EMC’s has also announced a doubling in capacity for the DD880 appliance, which can now support 192 disks and has enhanced replication capabilities to allow distribution of data to multiple sites using what the company says is “an additional new delta compression technology” and “low bandwidth optimization” features to keep network traffic low during replication. The appliance’s current chassis remains unchanged, with the extra capacity accessible with the addition of extra disk trays.

The enhanced product also gains inline encryption tools for data at rest.

Shane Moore, Marketing Manager, Asia Pacific and Japan for EMC’s Backup and Recovery Systems division said the company has “definitely had plenty of interest” in the new products, but could not name a local buyer at this stage.

TechTarget executive editor and independent backup expert W. Curtis Preston said he's worked with customers who are tiring of managing multiple Data Domain boxes after outgrowing their first purchase.

"Some of them could've bought a DD880, but fully configured, it's a million-dollar box. So they buy a $US100,000 box, they like it, it grows, and then what?" he said. The current choice in that situation is a forklift upgrade with DD arrays smaller than the DD690, and a head swap in the case of that array.

"OST could add just another layer of complexity to backup software, which is already pretty complex," said Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) storage architect Michael Passe. BIDMC is already creating its own global namespace that encompasses Data Domain's arrays using F5's ARX file virtualization switch, but Passe said he's still hoping to see Data Domain offer n-way native clusterability.

"We viewed OST as very proprietary," Passe said. "That's also why we deployed Data Domain as NAS rather than a VTL [virtual tape library], because we wanted to use native, well-understood protocols."

Still, Preston said "this is a good first step. I think this is a walk before you run thing. DD880s tend to be big enterprise customers that can deal with a few hiccups. Trying to release this across all their arrays might have led to a support nightmare on Day 1."

"Symantec integration with this new product ahead of internal EMC Networker stuff [is] a good sign that EMC is allowing the Data Domain guys to do what they need to do and not messing with their business model," added Wikibon.org founder and analyst David Vellante in an email to SearchDataBackup.com.

List pricing starts at $US800,150 for a Global Deduplication Array with 23 TB of usable capacity, providing 46 TB to 1.1 PB logical capacity.

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