At Las Vegas last May, EMC® discussed many new Data Domain and Avamar enhancements but waited until this month to roll out a new version of NetWorker. Unlike previous dot releases to NetWorker 7, this is a full revision with lots of new functionality.
New NetWorker 8.0
NetWorker 8.0 brings new levels of performance, scale and usability for customers to reach a new level in their IT transformation. NetWorker has been delivering value for over 20 years to more than 23,000 customers. During all that time, NetWorker has managed to become a tradition in many enterprise customers. For instance, NetWorker is currently running in the top 10 aerospace companies, 8 of the top 10 telecoms, 8 of the top 10 hospitals and 8 of the top 10 automakers. With the new NetWorker 8.0, EMC has deployed new functionality and performance improvements to make it even more appealing to larger enterprise data centers.
NetWorker 8.0 has a new device management architecture that is now distributed across storage nodes. The previous generation software centralized device management and with the new distributed management, NetWorker 8.0 can now scale activity 3X more than before.
In addition, theNetWorker 8.0 jobs database has a new engine. This new engine design improves CPU utilization by reducing the CPU load as well as the length and duration of internal maintenance tasks. The jobs database also has been changed from a flat file to a relational database for improved performance and allowing more simultaneous jobs to run.
Also, EMC has enhanced their backup to disk functionality. Originally, NetWorker’s support for disk targets was based on tape primitives but with the new support disk targets advance beyond the older tape model.
For example, NetWorker 8.0 introduces client direct backup that allows a client to backup data directly to the disk tarket and bypass the storage nodes for data path, only using the storage node to maintain metadata. Client direct in combination with Data Domain Boost will reduce the backup times by up to 50% and network bandwidth up to 90%.
In addition, NetWorker 8.0 now supports concurrent access to disks and backup appliances. This means that the system can now be backing up and restoring data from the same device, at the same time. As such, operators no longer need to worry about when they can perform recovery an/or cloning activities.
NetWorker 8.0’s new Microsoft application module has expanded support for SQL server® 2012 backups that can now backup AlwaysOn Availability groups, using bothy primary and secondary replicas. Also, NetWorker 8.0 offers granular recovery, also known as item level recovery, options for Exchange , SharePoint® 2010, and Hyper-V. Further, NetWorker 8.0 supports Hyper-V® image and guest level backups , as well as support for cluster shared volumes (CSV). CSV allows NetWorker 8.0 to track and backup VMs as they move around Hyper-V environments.
NetWorker 8.0’s management console gets a much needed revision with a more comprehensive GUI, better installation through configuration wizards for Microsoft Applications. . In addition, NetWorker now provides multi-tenant support through logical zones for major service providers and other organizations that need to segregate data, users and devices from one another. With all these new management capabilities, NetWorker 8.0 has expanded the role based access, as well as enhanced security through better audit capabilities
Data Domain feature enhancements
NetWorker 8.0 releases much deeper integration with EMC Data Domain appliances.
With NetWorker 8.0 DD Boost functionality will reside on NetWorker clients and also in application modules. This integration will hould reduce data transfer networking traffic significantly and speed up backups even more. NetWorker 8.0 extends the integration to the NetWorker client for files systems and VADP proxies. This increases backup speed, reduces network traffic by 80–90 percent, and drives more efficient use of resources.
Furthermore, NetWorker 8.0 continues to support clone controlled replication with Data Domain.. In this way NetWorker is now aware of all backup set replications plus can schedule, track and report on Data Domain replication.
According to Wikipedia NetWorker 7.0 was released in March 2003 and NetWorker was subsequently acquired by EMC in October of 2003. It’s probably been too long between major versions, but during all that time EMC continued to produce new 7.n releases every year since acquisition. However, my sources say it was time for a major refresh, at least when it comes to large enterprise environments. EMC has posted a retrospective video highlighting the progression of EMC NetWorker releases since its inception http://youtu.be/aF6r8WSfQyA
As such, we were surprised to see all the large enterprises currently running NetWorker 7. But with new NetWorker 8.0. functionality, it should become even more appealing to these organizations.
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Silverton Consulting, Inc. is a Storage, Strategy & Systems consulting services company, based in the USA offering products and services to the data storage community.