Copy data management (CDM) stands to save enterprises significant time and money and at the same time enhance disaster recovery. CDM software works by capturing a “golden master” copy of production data, and then creating and orchestrating the presentation of virtual copies of that file for various use cases and for various departments, across the enterprise. CDM helps to minimize the creation and, ultimately, the sprawl of redundant, full, but unnecessary data copies. This drives down the total capacity of secondary storage that the enterprise requires, while simultaneously reducing the number of copies that IT must manage.
Put simply, CDM is becoming more important and valuable because the number of copies that are being created is increasing. Business functions including marketing and test and development have become more reliant on data. Meanwhile, reporting, eDiscovery and data privacy regulations are becoming stricter. At the same time, cyberattacks including ransomware and other malware are becoming more frequent and more sophisticated. With copy data management, the enterprise has more flexibility to make as many virtual copies, which are up-to-date with the state of the production copy, as are needed.
CDM adds value, but there are a few problems with traditional CDM solutions. Some traditional CDM solutions are designed to fully replace the enterprise’s existing data management and protection services, rerouting data through the new solution. The problem is that data services like snapshots tend to be highly mature technologies, which have been in place for years. Walking away from this intellectual property (IP) can be both risky and a lengthy process. Other CDM solutions tend to be splintered, providing support for only a few systems. Still others do not actually create a standalone copy, instead they simply manage snapshots.
As a key distinguishing feature, next-generation CDM solutions have enhanced orchestration capabilities. Not only do they manage the copying and presentation of data across the enterprise and refresh copies as changes are made to the production environment, but they also automate the creation of copies using the most appropriate copy technology according to the service level agreement. Modern CDM provides better lifecycle management of data, which stands to further improve storage hardware utilization and at the same time further streamline CDM processes. Our on demand webinar with Hitachi Vantara, “Evolving Data Protection from Backup to Copy Data Management,” includes additional considerations when evaluating CDM technologies to support modern data needs.