Month: July 2012

AppAssure 5 – A review!

About a month ago AppAssure released the first version of their backup software since being acquired by Dell.  Dell AppAssure is one of the great sponsors on this blog so I figured hey, why not grab myself the trial version, install it, and share my experiences with my readers.  I tried to take note of as many of the features as I could, but being in a limited nested workstation lab there was only so much I could do.  So honestly, if you like what you see, I would go on over to AppAssure.com and get yourself your own free trial and give it a go.  Also, although I only tested from within a VMware environment, AppAssure actually supports protecting machines across your complete infrastructure, being Hyper-V, VMware, and even physical machines.   INSTALLATION First off is installation.  AppAssure is installed on top of either Windows 7, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, or Windows Server 2012 (you must have a 64 bit OS, 8 GB of RAM and obviously some sort of storage.)  The installation process was a breeze.  There were a few prerequisites but as you can see the installer had the option to go ahead and install them for me.  This is a small but great feature to have as there's nothing I hate more than searching around for prerequisites and updates.  For the most...

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#Veeam Explorer for Exchange – It’s veeamy cool!

If you are still looking for a valid excuse to virtualize your Exchange mailbox server you might want to have a look at this one!  The Veeam Explorer for Exchange was opened to beta testers today and looks to be just as awesomesauce as the rest of the Veeam products.  Essentially the new product allows you to browse your Veeam backup files (of Exchange of course) in an explorer like view, search through mailboxes and mailbox items and right-click items in order to export to msg files, pst files, or send them as attachments.  This is very similar to their item level recovery wizard that they already have for Exchange.  Oh, wait, did I mention it was also FREE!  Veeam Explorer for Exchange while in beta now will eventually be included in all versions of Veeam Backup and Replication (which in turn also has a free edition).  If you want to be an early adopter and check it out for yourself go on over to Veeams' site and get signed up for the beta. Have a veeamy...

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StarWind Software and Windows Server 2012 SOFS – No need for extra hardware!

One of the new features coming out inside of Windows Server 2012 is the ability to create what's called a Scaled Out File Server.    The Scale-Out File server is basically and active/active cluster solution in which all file servers can serve SMB client requests, so long as the scaled-out file shares are hosted on shared storage.  StarWind Software for years have been providing a software solution for shared storage, eliminating the need for expensive SAN or unreliable NAS hardware. Starwind has issued a press release stating their involvement with the Scaled Out File Server and how they can basically take the directly attached storage from the nodes, and simply turn that into shared storage for your clustered environment, eliminating the need to purchase additional hardware to support the new Microsoft feature.  Certainly this could be a great option for a SMB looking to provide some high availability without breaking the bank!  You can check out the full press release...

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Dell Storage missing from VMware Health Status

We have probably all been there at one point while messing around with ESXi and certain types of hardware.  You get your ESXi host installed and configured and it seems to work fine until you look at the Health Status section of the host configuration and notice that you can see mostly all of your hardware, except for the peice that is most likely to fail, your storage.  Now normally, well, with HP anyway, you can install the provided offline packages in order to get the hardware to appear, however in my experiences with Dell after installing their Server Administrator software and their Open Manage bundles the storage was still no where to be found. Well, here's the deal.  The adapter that I was specifically trying to report on was a PERC H700.  Now most of the Dell PERC controllers are based off of a MegaRAID chipset (answer is always a Google search away) and you can confirm this by running 'esxcfg-scsidevs -a' to show the following output about your hba's. So, off to LSI's site I headed to have a look for a VIB that might give me the information I need to see about my storage.  I ended up pulling down a vib designed for the MegaSAS 9260.  There are many ways to install a vib into ESXi but since I already had established an SSH session on...

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Dell AppAssure 5 released!

As you may remember roughly 4 months ago AppAssure, the makers of the application-aware backup software were acquired by Dell.  Just recently Dell AppAssure has made available the first release, version 5, since that acquisition. Dell AppAssure 5 has been built from the ground up and allows you to protect both virtual and physical applications utilizing the same interface.  It offers both backup and replication allowing you to take a maximum of 288 incremental snapshot replications a day.  Wow, 288, that's got to be pushing the near zero RTO that people are looking to have. Now what really makes AppAssure stick out for me is the fact that they cover not only virtual, but physical applications as well.  The ability to get this consistency across your backup products in addition to having either physical, virtual or cloud backups targets really seams appealing.   Expect a full review of the software here soon but for now have a look at the key features of the release below, as well as you can check it out for yourself over at www.appassure.com/ and get a free trial. Live Recovery provides near-zero recovery time (RTO), and enables you to get servers (VMs or physical) restored and running in minutes. Recovery Assure provides automated recovery verification and testing to ensure that your backups are recoverable. Universal Recovery allows you to restore cross-platform to any VM or even dissimilar hardware....

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