One of the more technical features of Continuum BDR is the flexibility it affords in terms of RAID options for its backup appliance.
For the less technically savvy, RAID is an acronym for a redundant array of independent (or, inexpensive) disks, which affords benefits in terms of performance and redundancy by placing data across multiple disk drives instead of just one. Depending on how they are configured between a variety of disk striping and mirroring techniques, RAIDs can have a variety of benefits useful to the overall performance and stability of a system.There are numerous considerations when deciding which RAID to use for your Continuum BDR setups, as well as factors such as RAID controllers, software RAID and the so-called “fake-RAID” options—all of which come at different price points. However, RAID10 is recommended as the optimal setup for Continuum BDR. On a recent episode of MSP Radio, Zeshan Raja, Assistant Director of Partner Success at Continuum, explains why RAID 10 is preferred over RAID 5, and why it may be better to start off on the right foot rather than having to switch as you ramp up endpoints.
“Continuum BDR’s backup appliance is doing a lot of things. It's not just doing, say, a backup and then that's it. Continuum BDR does a lot. There are backups that are happening all the time. Imagine having six or seven servers that are backing up every hour. Along with those backups there's merge tasks that are happening. There's reporting that happens. There's also the offsite replication. While it's doing a backup, it could also be reading from the disks to send that data offsite. Also, we recently released our Tru-Verify™ feature which is actually spinning up a virtual instance of each protected server once a day and putting together video backup verification.
There are a lot of things happening on those disks—both reads and writes—that when we see these low-end RAID controllers that are using RAID5, while all of this is going on we start to see the disk I/O get pegged and then that starts to cause performance issues on the appliance.
Not only that, in a DR scenario when you want to actually virtualize machines, if you're virtualizing multiple machines again (Using RAID5), you have lots of read/writes happening on those disks. That's why we see the scenario of partners who initially went with RAID 5 start to see some of those performance issues, and that's when they go to RAID 10. Then, we don't see those issues occur anymore.”
There is a lot more to this discussion, and even more to the recommendations and flexibility that Continuum BDR provides for RAID support. Listen to the entire RAID support conversation here!
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