EMC brings replication monitoring to Data Protection Advisor

By Kevin Komiega

-- EMC today announced a round of upgrades to the EMC Data Protection Advisor backup monitoring and analysis tool, including new support for replication software, giving customers a single view of the data protection environment across backup, replication and NAS infrastructures.

The role of Data Protection Advisor, which EMC obtained by acquiring former OEM partner WysDM in 2008, is to automatically collect data from applications, hosts and storage arrays and identify configuration gaps that could result in missed service level agreements (SLAs) or data protection objectives.

The software was originally focused on monitoring the backup process. Since EMC acquired WysDM, the company has expanded the functionality of Data Protection Advisor to include support for virtual server environments, NAS devices, and now EMC replication technologies, according to Ken MacDonald, EMC's director of storage software product marketing.

"Data Protection Advisor unifies information from across a customer's data protection environment to provide monitoring, analysis and reporting of heterogeneous backups," says MacDonald. "We are now able to provide data protection management for the entire landscape by expanding its capabilities into the world of replication, adding a vCenter plug-in and enhanced chargeback."

Version 5.5 of Data Protection Advisor supports replication software on Symmetrix and Clariion storage arrays. The software generates a graphical map of application clients, arrays, devices and replicas that identifies what is working and where replication gaps exist. 

The wizard-based software discovers the application structure and all the associated storage, devices and replicas and captures changes in the recoverability from any replicas. 

Data Protection Advisor 5.5 supports EMC RecoverPoint network-based replication. Customers can now peer into RecoverPoint replication configuration and performance information.

MacDonald says Data Protection Advisor is a useful tool for verifying SLA compliance and conducting internal audits.

For VMware users, Data Protection Advisor 5.5 is now integrated with VMware vCenter Server via a vCenter plug-in to serve up backup information, alerting and reporting for individual virtual machines and ESX servers. 

Data Protection Advisor 5.5 also features expanded support for EMC's Celerra unified storage systems and a range of Data Domain deduplicating backup systems. The enhancements for Data Domain systems include expanded reporting for system configuration, power, temperature and fan components and the ability to analyze and track deduplication ratios across EMC Data Domain, Avamar and NetWorker backup products.

For Celerra, Data Protection Advisor now delivers graphical mapping of Celerra Replicator software relationships and monitoring, alerting and reporting on CPU, memory, performance and capacity of Celerra systems.

Data Protection Advisor 5.5 is available now from EMC and its partners. Pricing starts at $3,000 for 20 client machines, while pricing for replication support varies by configuration. EMC says replication pricing for Symmetrix replication starts at $346/TB.

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This article was originally published on December 14, 2009