Storix upgrades AIX, Linux backup/recovery software

Posted on January 04, 2007

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By Ann Silverthorn

—Next week, Storix will release version 6.1 of its System Backup Administrator (SBAdmin) software, which includes new features for AIX- and Linux-based backup and recovery. New features include an enhanced GUI, an Oracle database feature, remote installation, and improved compression.

Storix founder and CEO, Anthony Johnson, developed Sysback, IBM's centralized backup-and-recovery software for AIX. When he started his own company, SBAdmin initially offered extensions for Sysback. Eventually, Storix developed its own backup-and-recovery software for both AIX and Linux.

Johnson considers the Adaptable System Recovery (ASR) feature to be a key differentiator for SBAdmin versus competing products such as IBM/Tivoli's Sysback and Linux-based backup-and-recovery software from vendors such as Arkeia and Microlite.

"We back up at the file level and we also back up images that aren't assigned to files," says Johnson. "Customers can avoid the fragmentation that happens in image backup, which can't restore from one type of disk to another."

ASR doesn't require recovery to an identical system. By backing up both files and images, it protects not only files, but also the files' metadata and system information that administrators need to recover the system.

SBAdmin also helps administrators redesign their systems during recovery for better performance. The failed server may be several years old and the new server may offer capabilities that weren't originally available. SBAdmin analyzes the system and informs administrators of changes that need to be made for the backup to fit on the new hardware. ASR can also use logical volume management (LVM) to change RAID configurations.

On the backup side, SBAdmin performs full and incremental backups and snapshots and supports disk-to-disk (D2D) and disk-to-disk-to-tape (D2D2T) for AIX and Linux. It also provides client-side encryption, so when data is copied to the backup media it's useless to anyone without the encryption keys.

As for those encryption keys, Johnson says that IT management often fears the use of encryption because of the key-management burden and the possibility of keys being lost. Storix has safeguards and fixes in case keys are lost, however. Administrators can type in a pre-selected string of text and SBAdmin will reconstruct the keys.

The new version of SBAdmin will be available next week. Licenses are priced at $895 for the network administrator version and $395 for each client-server version. At least one license of each version is required.

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