EMC Corp./Data Domain DD880 Enterprise Deduplication Storage System

Backup and disaster recovery software and services

Silver Award:

Continuity Software RecoverGuard v4.0

Getting a disaster recovery plan right requires testing, which can be an expensive, time-consuming and disruptive process. Some companies roll the dice and skimp on testing, but others have found that DR testing tools, like Continuity Software's RecoverGuard, can provide a measure of assurance to their DR plans.

Continuity was one of the pioneers in the still fairly narrow field of DR testing applications, and was also a silver award winner in 2007 for Version 2.0 of RecoverGuard.

RecoverGuard provides a sanity check for a DR plan as it detects potential gaps or conflicts in the processes that a recovery would depend on, such as incomplete replication configurations, or inadequate or incompatible remote site gear. To do this, RecoverGuard uses agentless technology to inventory an environment and then continually monitors the status to flag any changes that could knock a DR plan out of kilter. With that information in hand, the odds of crafting an effective disaster recovery plan vastly improve, or as one judge put it: "What better way to do DR is there?"

RecoverGuard 4.0 adds to its long list of capabilities with new support for high-availability (HA) clustered environments, enabling it to detect gaps in these often complex configurations. Version 4.0 supports HA clustering products from Hewlett-Packard (HP) Co., IBM Corp., Linux, Microsoft Corp., Oracle Corp. and Sun Microsystems Inc.

While RecoverGuard could always detect and report vulnerabilities, its new root-cause capability can now provide more specific remedial advice related to infrastructure changes that could jeopardize a recovery. Configuration "drift" (when systems slip out of synch) can also be detected for a variety of hardware and software conditions, and against desired service levels.

A RecoverGuard 4.0 license to protect 30 servers costs approximately $30,000. For approximately $1,000 a server that's a small price to pay to help ensure a DR plan is up to date and comprehensive. Continuity Software doesn't pitch RecoverGuard as a replacement for testing, but the app can certainly make testing easier and less costly.

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