I recently blogged about the benefits of Commvault's deployment of Commvault Edge™, describing an accident, which resulted in a damaged hard drive, and the affected employee still had access to his data and was quickly "back up" and running. Since that blog, I've been asked to provide more information about our roll-out. While I'm working on a case study that will provide greater detail, I thought I'd lift the curtain and share some of the things we've learned internally as more and more employees use our Commvault Edge technology, reducing the burden of data recovery for our own IT team.
As of May 2013, Commvault internally:
- Has 650 laptops under protection through our production CommCell.
- Has a globally distributed employee community, with the majority in the U.S., but increasing Edge adoption in other countries
- Currently protects close to 2.5TB of end-user data with a deduplication ratio in the 70-80% range
- Employs opportunistic scheduling with an eight-hour maximum window time between backup jobs. This means that the Edge client can look for the optimal time to run a backup job every eight hours. Users can also add schedules to meet their needs or kick off a job through the Backup monitor on the system or through the web console, which can be accessed through any device with an Internet connection.
- Enhanced the Commvault Edge solution to make it easier to define content to backup, from the initial 50 file types to include everything on the Desktop and in the My Documents folders, except for an exclusion list of certain file types, such as videos and music. While IT doesn't allow end users to change the policies for what is included in the backup, due to corporate compliance requirements, they can add additional folders outside what is defined, if needed.
- Experiences no connection problems. We have seen sporadic spikes in network traffic, but nothing out of scope from our planning because client-side deduplication and opportunistic scheduling, with a geographically-distributed workforce (time zones), has helped to mitigate connection issues.
- Updated our corporate laptop image to include the Edge client so employees only have to register their system to be up and running. Internal messaging and FAQs have been created for users to sign-up for the program, deploy the client, and utilize the apps and web console.
Some other interesting items of note and benefits:
- The software development team was one of the big drivers of our roll-out because they benefited from using the internal system as a test bed for new functionality and upcoming service packs.
- There have been several cases already when protected data was recovered by employees on their own faster than IT could have done, making the employees more productive and reducing the burden on IT. Specific events included a stolen laptop, an apartment fire, a spilled drink, and hard drive failure.
- In several cases, an employee left Commvault for a new opportunity and their manager needed access to important information before the laptop was returned to Commvault. The Edge functionality was proved extremely helpful, especially in one case where the employee deleted information prior to returning the laptop.
- We have seen a reduced load on the IT helpdesk for data recovery.
- Our sales teams are able to demonstrate self-service, end-user access to protected information through the mobile apps and web console provided by Commvault Edge. This helps our partners, customers and prospects to understand quickly how focused we are on helping them holistically to conquer all their data management and protection challenges, and ultimately bring more value to their business.
Eating our own dog food with Commvault Edge internal deployment is not merely a marketing story – it is a true story of the benefits across our organization of protecting, recovering, managing and finding important information at the edge. Stay tuned for more details and findings in the coming months.
Still have doubts or concerns about how protecting data at the edge can add value in your organization? Share your thoughts and let us know how we can help.
Greg White (@gregorydwhite) is Senior Manager of Product Marketing for Data Management and Protection at Commvault.