VRTech Offers VTL Backup Software for IBM i
June 25, 2013 Alex Woodie
IBM i shops that are looking for a better disaster recovery (DR) solution than tape may want to check out the latest virtual tape library (VTL) software from VRTech. VTLBackup4i, which was unveiled in 2012, allows organizations to back up their IBM i libraries to another IBM i server, or to a Windows network drive or network attached storage (NAS) device, using the FTP protocol. The offering provides faster backups than tape, and delivers geographic separation for disaster protection.
While disk-to-disk (D2D) backup solutions are growing in popularity, tape is still the most prominent DR protection method. Although use of tape is declining, nearly three out of four organizations still use tape to back up or archive data, according to the 2012 State of Resilience report issued in December by high availability software provider Vision Solutions.
VTLBackup4i is one product that can help IBM i shops break the tape habit and adopt a D2D solution. The software works by backing up libraries on the production IBM i disk, and then transferring the libraries to a remote IBM i server, Windows-based network file share, or any network attached storage (NAS) device, using the FTP protocol. Once on the backup IBM i or file share, the folders are compressed.
In the event of a disaster, the backup IBM i server can be turned into the production machine, providing an element of business continuity. If the data is backed up to a Windows file share or NAS device, the data must first be restored to an IBM i machine before production can resume. The software can be used to transmit sets over the network to a new machine.
Administrators work with VTLBackup4i through a Windows GUI. This allows them to set up the backups (including incremental and full backups); monitor the communication over FTP; and activate the restore processes. When IBM i backups are complete, the software sends a PDF-based status report to the administrator via email. The software also includes reports that compare the data on the production and the backup machine, which will tell the administrator if the backup machine is ready to become the production machine.
VTLBackup4i is not a high availability software product, and does not use IBM journaling, which the folks at VRTech view as a benefit. The software also automatically resolves object locks on backup libraries, which helps get a complete backup, the company says.
VRTech has several VTLBackup4i customers in production. The company is working on the version 2.0, which will debut soon, VRTech owner and co-CEO Yana Riahi tells IT Jungle. Pricing for the software starts at $3,900 for a perpetual license on a P05 machine (including three months maintenance), or $1,365 per year for an annual subscription.
The Israel-based company develops several other products for the IBM i server in the application integration, document management, security, and administration areas, including LinkIt, ExcelIt, EasyPDF400, Spool2Office, FailSafe, and DoObjectLock. All told, the company says it has attracted hundreds of customers in Israel since it launched in 2006, including names such as Israel Railways, Menora-Mevtahim Insurance Company, Maccabi Healthcare Services, Ace Hardware, Bosch, and Dun & Bradstreet.
The company also has customers around the world, including some in the US. It is currently looking to expand its reach in the US through partnerships, Riahi says. For more information, see the company’s website at www.vrtech.biz.