Dell Software Tuesday unveiled a new version of its AppAssure data protection software application that features significantly enhanced replication capabilities along with improved performance and reporting features.
AppAssure 5.4, which is being release after a six-month beta, has over 50 new features, with enhanced replication at the top of the list, said Jason Raymond, director of data protection product management for Dell Software, which was formed in the wake of Dell's 2012 acquisition of Quest Software.
AppAssure, which Dell in 2012 also acquired, until Tuesday could do only basic replication, Raymond said.
"Before, it replicated data from site A to site B," he said. "Now it caters more to the MSP community by allowing replication from A to B to C, or for A to B and C. So a smaller customer, for instance, can replicate data to a warm DR [disaster recovery] site to an MSP."
AppAssure 5.4 also allows throttling of the bandwidth used for replication, Raymond said. "Most customers replicate data every 60 minutes," he said. "This eats up a lot of bandwidth. So we let customers 'shape' the traffic."
Also new is the ability to set different retention policies for each site that receives the replicated data, so that data at different sites can be kept for varying amounts of time.
AppAssure 5.4 also provides the ability to change the performance and capacity "footprint" of the replication with such capabilities as dynamically changing the dedupe cache size, and lets users schedule their replications as needed, he said.
AppAssure 5.4 not only checks to make sure a backup is done, it also talks to applications such as Microsoft Exchange, SQL and SharePoint to make sure the data can be recovered, Raymond said.
"You know the system can be recovered from the state in which it was backed up," he said.
The new advanced replication capabilities of AppAssure 5.4 provide the kind of capabilities enterprise storage users expect, said Paul Clifford, president of Davenport Group, a St. Paul-based solution provider and Dell partner which as worked with AppAssure software since AppAssure was acquired by Dell.
"Each customer has different needs," Clifford said. "Multi-target replications to get to different locations is important for many customers. And multi-hop replications from site A to site B to site C, or from site A to sites B and C help improve disaster recovery."
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