Is TSM 7.1 Ready For The Cloud Era?

This week, IBM announced the latest release of its flagship data protection solution, Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) 7.1.

Packed full of developments and improvements, today we wanted to highlight some of the key changes IBM have made in an effort to tempt more cloud builders and service providers to use TSM.

Scalability is vital

The very nature of cloud architecture will drive the need for scalable data management solutions – it’s as simple as that. And according to IBM, TSM 7.1 is 8x more scalable than V5 (which as we’ve discussed previously, is due to reach the end of its life in April next year).

So what does this mean in practice? Well, a single TSM server can now protect up to 300TB of data and ingest up to 20TB of changed data per day – by anyone’s standards, that’s a lot.

This scalability is very important to private and public cloud providers, particularly since the value proposition is all about agility and cost, so the less backup servers you have to manage, the better it is in all respects.

Data, deduplication and disaster recovery

A new feature of TSM 7.1 is the ability to automate the client failover for data recovery in the event of a disaster via its node replication technology. In the coming weeks, we’ll be going into more detail about various models for utilising the cloud for data protection, but arguably the most popular one is Disaster Recovery. Therefore, those service providers looking to offer Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) should take a closer look at this.

Secondly, in order to utilise the cloud effectively, you need to be able to move data efficiently and make best use of the available bandwidth. With TSM 7.1, the native deduplication feature is – according to IBM – up to 10x more powerful than the previous version.

Combine this with the software’s incremental forever technology and you have a very good system for managing capacity, making possible new architectures and use cases for cloud computing.

Better VMware integration

And finally, since many clouds are built on VMware technology, TSM has made improvements in that area, too. For example, new to TSM 7.1 is the ability to perform full virtual machine instant access and restore, object level recovery of SQL databases and individual mailbox recovery for Exchange, all from a virtual machine backup.

Just some of the key features of TSM 7.1, these alone are doing a lot to show that TSM is potentially ready to embrace the cloud computing era – but what do you think?

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