Unlike many other data storage technologies, the Nasuni online storage solution, available as either a physical appliance or virtual instance, can be non-disruptively implemented right alongside legacy storage in a customer data center. No “rip & replace” or “forklifting” is necessary; in fact Nasuni can be an effective supplement to existing storage, with numerous benefits. Here are five key benefits to implementing Nasuni alongside existing storage solutions:
1. Take The Pressure Off Legacy Storage. Expensive legacy storage arrays are best used for applications with high-IOPS data requirements – databases, email, etc., also known as “structured” data. But many customers also store file-level or “unstructured” data on that same storage, even though it does not require the same storage performance. Why is this a problem? Because unstructured data can take up a LOT of space, usually a great deal more than structured data. This creates pressure on legacy storage capacity, which often results in high-cost, potentially disruptive storage expansion, or worse, migration of data to low-security file servers. Nasuni offers a non-disruptively scalable, low-maintenance solution for file storage which can free up space and relieve this constant pressure on legacy storage. (They even supply a simple, FREE tool to migrate file data from legacy storage to Nasuni.) Simple to install, the Nasuni filer looks just like a file server on the network, but offers so much more. (See below.)
2. Increase Security. File data can be a ticking time-bomb of security risk. Securing file data on legacy storage can be complex and expensive, often involving non-integrated, slap-on security solutions. By contrast, the Nasuni Filer is a locked-down, encrypted file repository using built-in AES-256 encryption, the algorithm approved by the National Security Agency for use in Top Secret documents. With the Nasuni solution, the customer owns the encryption keys; for this reason neither Nasuni nor the backend cloud storage provider can “see” the data. To them – and to any unauthorized parties – it’s just bits.
3. Easy Muti-Site File Sharing. While businesses have numerous options for multi-site file sharing using legacy storage, almost all are expensive, and some can be prohibitively complex to manage. These include duplicate storage arrays at each site, after-market replication software, aftermarket WAN compression technologies, etc. By contrast the Nasuni solution enables secure multi-site sharing of a single pool of cloud storage. Each site “sees” the same storage pool in the cloud without compromising the inherent security of the Nasuni solution. Think of it as an easy way to enable multiple sites to see the same mega-scalable, mega-secure file server.
4. Enhanced Backup. Backing up file data stored on legacy storage can be laborious, expensive and VERY unreliable. For a great many businesses, backup, in a word, sucks. A big part of the problem is that full backups can become bogged down with file data which has a low change rate and therefore should not require frequent backups. By contrast, once file data is migrated to a Nasuni Filer it no longer requires local backup and can be eliminated from the backup schema, thereby removing a big chunk of the data that has bogged down the process. Another big bonus of the Nasuni solution is that recovery times are amazingly fast, usually a fraction of the time it would take to recover the same data using legacy backup solutions. (See below for more.) The Nasuni solution can also save big on licensing, since nearly all major backup solutions are licensed by total data under protection and/or server count.
5. Enhanced Recoverability and Disaster Tolerance. Just as they are on the backup side of the equation, legacy storage (and legacy backup) solutions are often bogged down by the need to recover structured and unstructured data as part of the same data sets. Anyone who has done it before knows this can be a slow and unreliable process. With the Nasuni solution in place, when something bad happens it elegantly accommodates nearly every recovery scenario without getting in the way of structured data recovery operations on legacy platforms. Individual file recovery is simple, with extensive built-in versioning and retention capabilities. If a full recovery to a completely new Filer is required, whether local or remote, it can be accomplished in little more time than the few minutes it takes to install the Filer software. The data is retained securely in the cloud where it awaits access from the new Filer. All that is required is the encryption key.
In conclusion, installing a Nasuni Filer can act as a big enhancement to an existing legacy storage environment by reducing expansion pressures, increasing security, enabling multi-site sharing, enhancing backup and disaster tolerance. For more information please see the Nasuni page on the Southern Data Storage website at: http://www.nasuni.com/partner/southerndatastorage.