EMC Breathes Life Into NetWorker With Dedupe, Cloud Integration


EMC is investing in its long-ignored Networker data protection business in the wake of the reorganization of its backup software business after EMC acquired Data Domain.

That includes this weeks’ unveiling of tight integration of NetWorker with Data Domain dedupe technology, and follows the recent move to integrate the software with the EMC Atmos cloud storage platform.

Frank Slootman, president of EMC’s Backup and Recovery Systems (BRS) division, on Tuesday admitted that EMC has ignored its Networker data protection software for some time despite it being a robust business within EMC.

Networker has fallen behind in terms of customer support and technology, Slootman said. “We’ve changed the leadership, and reorganized,” he said. “But our ace-in-the-hole is integration with Data Domain. We own it. We’re investing in it.”

EMC has had plenty of time to invest in NetWorker. It got the NetWorker technology with its acquisition in 2003 of Legato Systems. Since that time, though, EMC has been uncharacteristically quiet about NetWorker, especially compared to the buzz it generates with its other product lines.

However, EMC’s acquisition last year of Data Domain, and the subsequent reorganization of its old Backup, Recovery, and Archiving (BURA) division into its BRS division, is providing the vehicle for the vendor to re-examine NetWorker.

BRS, with an annual revenue in excess of $1 billion, includes Data Domain and Avamar data deduplication technologies, NetWorker data protection software, and the Disk Library series of virtual tape libraries.

NetWorker is getting integrated with some of EMC’s other technologies. For instance, EMC this week unveiled Data Domain Boost, a technology which, when used with Legato, shifts much of the processing from the dedupe appliance to the customer’s backup server, therefore increasing the dedupe performance by 50 percent and dramatically increasing throughput, Slootman said.

He said that Data Domain Boost was designed in response to Symantec's Open Storage Technology (OST), which, when used in conjunction with its data protection software, allows storage devices to automate the backup of data between multiple appliances.

About 22 percent of Data Domain backups are currently being done using OST, Slootman said. Data Domain Boost was developed from work Data Domain did with Symantec and OST before it was acquired by EMC, he said.

 

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