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Open Source Backup Software
As organizations of all sizes become increasingly dependent upon their data, centralized backup and recovery of data distributed across all platforms is essential. Yet, faced with small IT staffs and limited budgets, many businesses cannot afford to purchase and manage expensive and complex backup solutions. Amanda Enterprise software provides enterprise- level backup and restore capabilities, coupled with ease of implementation and management, at one-fifth to one-tenth of the cost of proprietary backup products.
With Amanda Enterprise, system administrators can set up a backup server to back up multiple Linux, Solaris, Windows, and Mac OS X clients to tape, disk, or storage cloud. Amanda Enterprise also protects databases such as Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, Postgres and the data in email applications including Microsoft Exchange. Image-level backup of VMware guest VMs is also supported.
As an open source product, Amanda Enterprise uses standard data formats – effectively freeing you from being locked into a vendor to recover your archived data. Amanda has been certified by an initiative sponsored by the US Department of Homeland Security to be free of security defects – the only backup product to achieve such a distinction.
A centralized web-based management console simplifies all day-to-day activities such as configuring backup policies and schedules, adding new clients, initiating and monitoring backup activities, restoring files from backup archives, and generating pre-defined or custom reports.
Administrators can remotely access Amanda Enterprise from any browser, including any Internet-enabled PDA, to monitor backup activities and perform backup and recovery operations. IT managers can implement centralized management policies and processes to ensure that corporate, legal, and regulatory requirements are being met.
Most backup products require administrators to select the specific days and levels for backup of each client. For organizations with a large number of backup clients to configure, this can be tedious and complicated. It also results in huge variations in the amount of data backed up each day, requiring companies to purchase additional storage and network capacity to accommodate peak data volumes.
To address the time and cost inefficiencies of manual scheduling, Amanda Enterprise has an intelligent scheduler that automatically determines backup levels to optimize resource usage and recovery point objectives. This powerful and unique scheduling system allows administrators to increase their productivity and achieve consistent backup windows.
Since backup touches most of your IT infrastructure, any of the moving parts can have a potential glitch. Architecture of Amanda Enterprise allows it to keep running even in the face of multiple faults.
For example, Amanda Enterprise gracefully skips systems (e.g. laptops) which cannot be backed up in a particular run. When this skipped system is available in a future backup run, Amanda Enterprise’s intelligent scheduler promotes its backup to an appropriate backup level. In case of backup media errors (e.g. tape errors or inaccessibility of cloud storage), Amanda Enterprise caches the backup data on the holding disk. You can migrate this data to backup media after the fault has been resolved.
As an open source product, Amanda Enterprise does not use any proprietary data formats. All other commercial backup products use their own proprietary backup formats that lock you into their product since it provides the only way to recover data. Your backup data is essentially held hostage by the vendor. With data protected by Amanda Enterprise, in case of emergency you can recover your data using standard operating system tools and utilities.
Standard backup tools. Amanda Enterprise uses industry-standard tar to backup Linux and Solaris clients. The standard Zip file format is used to backup Windows.
Standard compression. Amanda Enterprise supports standard compression utilities, such as gzip, and allows administrators to choose the optimal compression algorithm for the data and the resources available, as well as whether to compress the data on the client or the server. Most backup solutions lock the user into proprietary compression routines.
Recovering data is quick and easy with Amanda Enterprise. The graphic interface allows administrators to simply click on the file or files to be restored.
Cross-platform restore. Data backed up from one operating system may be recovered to a different operating system.
Amanda Enterprise provides many layers of security to ensure that backup data, communications, and access to the backup process itself are all secured.
Role-based access. Amanda Enterprise allows universal access to be given to administrators, while operators are given access only to their respective data sets.
Standard encryption. Most commercial backup products use a built-in proprietary encryption algorithm. On the other hand, Amanda Enterprise gives you the flexibility to choose from any standard encryption, and to encrypt the data either on the client to ensure security of data in transit or on the server to ensure security of data at rest.
Amanda Enterprise provides comprehensive reports for quick discovery of problems, capacity planning and compliance management, helping you to meet the business objectives of data protection.
Calendar view provides at-a-glance view of history of backup operations.This interactive calendar provides visual indicators of success and failures, and provides easy drill down to details of a specific backup run. Media reports provide visual overview of media utilization and performance, so you can identify backup performance bottlenecks and do capacity planning. You can initiate one-click recovery right from your backup summary reports. In addition, you can customize reports and export them into a spreadsheet or the dashboard of your monitoring application for further trending analysis.
Amanda Enterprise should be on the short list of any IT manager looking for a backup solution.
Arun Taneja, Noted Storage Analyst