Why Self-Protecting Production Storage at the Edge?

Enterprises are relying more and more on edge data centers to collect and process critical data in real time. Increasingly, edge data centers require bare metal-levels of performance – but at the same time, these important data streams must be protected. The problem is that enterprises have a finite budget when it comes to investing in the infrastructure required to meet these needs, and many of these locations do not even have IT staff on-site. Maintaining discrete production and protection data centers becomes too expensive and too complicated – especially considering that protection data centers increasingly must have levels of performance that are equivalent to the production data center.

A hybrid approach whereby customers employ a small data center footprint at the edge for the organization’s “hottest” data, and then employs the cloud for “colder” long-term archive and retention use cases, can help to meet performance needs while simultaneously controlling storage capacity costs. However, two significant problems arise with this approach. The first is silos of storage that must be managed, and the second is vast discrepancies in performance.

To overcome these challenges, IT professionals may consider employing an intermediary storage service for “warm” data. For its part, ClearSky Data offers a hybrid cloud solution that bridges edge caches and back-end cloud storage services with regional-specific “Points of Presence” (PoP) data centers. ClearSky’s service applies continuously-running, intelligent caching and tiering algorithms to optimize data placement across the various storage infrastructure resources. The PoP maintains copies of data that are consistent with the production data center, and which is accessible for what is, according to ClearSky, an RPO and an RTO of 0 in the event of an outage to the production data center. Data does not need to be migrated – rather, the access point is all that needs to be updated – further saving time and expenses.

The result for customers is a fast-performing production storage implementation at the edge that also protects data automatically. Silos of multi-cloud implementations are unified, overcoming the pain of having to manage a separate protection data center because production systems lack backup capabilities despite their ability to protect the storage system itself and provide snapshots and replication. The ClearSky solution warrants evaluation, especially for edge environments that are increasingly becoming business-critical but which, at the same time, struggle against far more limited resources than a core data center.

If you are interested in learning more, access our on demand webinar with ClearSky Data, “How to Design Self-Protecting Storage and Gain Backup Independence”.

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Senior Analyst, Krista Macomber produces analyst commentary and contributes to a range of client deliverables including white papers, webinars and videos for Storage Switzerland. She has a decade of experience covering all things storage, data center and cloud infrastructure, including: technology and vendor portfolio developments; customer buying behavior trends; and vendor ecosystems, go-to-market positioning, and business models. Her previous experience includes leading the IT infrastructure practice of analyst firm Technology Business Research, and leading market intelligence initiatives for media company TechTarget.

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