NetApp Buys Virtual Tape Company

Alacritus is among a handful of small developers of continuous, realtime data backup software. NetApp, Sunnyvale, Calif., already co-sells Alacritus' Virtual Tape Library software, which emulates up to 99.9 percent of tape libraries currently on the market, according to Amit Pandey, vice president and general manager of NetApp's NearStore business unit.

The VTL application will complement the NAS heavyweight's current SnapVault software, used for disk-to-disk backups, said Pandev. Both applications run on all of NetApp's storage arrays, he said.

"Virtual tape libraries open a group of customers reluctant to switch from backing up to tape to using disk," said Pandev. "It emulates tape. It plugs in like tape. Users notice no difference, except that their backups are faster and more reliable."

Virtual tape libraries allow data to be streamed to disk as if it were being backed up to tape. This differs from disk-to-disk backup, which typically stores data in its original file format onto low-cost arrays for fast backups and restores. Virtual tape libraries can be connected to a server or a SAN, and managed by backup applications as if they were physical tape libraries.

Sponsored post

Regardless of format, disk-based backup represents the fastest-growing part of the storage industry and NetApp's business, according to Pandev.