EMC Aims For Speedy Dedupe With DD Boost

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The product announcements continue to roll out from EMC, after the storage giant launched software designed to accelerate backup integrated with deduplication storage

EMC continues to make hay at its annual World Conference, after the storage giant reveals data protection software called DD Boost (i.e. Data Domain Boost), which it claims is the first such package to optimise and accelerate disk-based backup integrated with deduplication storage.

Data Domain Development

Usually, the event is staged in a resort-like place like Orlando, Fla. This year, the world’s largest independent storage maker, based in Hopkinton, Mass., elected to stay close to home in Boston. Nothing wrong with that, but anybody wishing to soak up some near-tropical sunshine will simply have to wait until another day.

EMC continues to draw on 2009’s $2.2 billion (£1.5 billion) Data Domain acquisition for new purposes.

EMC Data Domain Global Deduplication Array
EMC Data Domain Global Deduplication Array

In April, EMC launched a Data Domain global deduplication array that is capable of backing up 12.8TB of data per hour (a rate of 3.5G bps), has a top usable capacity of 280TB and can handle up to 270 concurrent write streams.

On 11 May, EMC revealed something called DD Boost (for Data Domain Boost), data protection software that the company claims is the first such package to “optimise and accelerate” disk-based backup integrated with deduplication storage.

Data deduplication eliminates redundant data from a disk storage device in order to lower storage space requirements, which in turn lowers data centre power and cooling costs and lessens the amount of carbon dioxide produced in generating power to run the hardware.

DD Boost’s secret sauce is that it distributes the deduplication process, identifying data segments in-line as they arrive in a Data Domain storage system. It analyses the segments to determine which blocks are new, then compresses and forwards only the unique segments to the storage array.

This pre-editing of data blocks speeds throughput in the overall backup load and can reduce local network traffic by a large margin – possibly as high as 80 to 95 percent – because redundant data segments do not enter the array in the first place.

Reducing Backup Strain

A side benefit of the DD Boost process is that it reduces workload strain on the overall backup process, EMC said.

DD Boost will work with non-EMC backup products, such as Symantec NetBackup and Backup Exec, and is available now, EMC said.

Ironically, the same product for EMC’s own NetWorker backup package won’t be ready for prime time until the second half of 2010. Go here for more information.

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