Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/06/30/virtualboot/
StorageCraft promises two minute server image resurrection
Backup recovery boost
StorageCraft has promised its ShadowProtect backup product can have a server image booted as a virtual machine in two minutes from a backup set if the server crashes.
The technology is called VirtualBoot and involves right-clicking a backup image and selecting the VirtualBoot option to have the backup image boot as a virtual machine using Sun/Oracle's VirtualBox.
This provides a manual failover to a restored virtual server in minutes and is an alternative to automatic server failover products from suppliers such as Double-Take.
ShadowProtect provides volume-level full, incremental and disk-based backups. It includes exact point-in-time backups of the O/S, applications, configuration and network settings and data. There can be bare metal, file and folder recovery as well as the VirtualBoot.
StorageCraft  also offers hardware-independent restore (HIR) using a bootable recovery CD. It contains a library of drivers to detect new hardware so that you can recover to the same system, dissimilar hardware, and to and from virtual environments. Virtual Boot goes further than this with a virtual machine startup rather than a CD-ROM-based restoration.
The company says virtual booting takes "approximately two minutes, regardless of the size of the server or backup image; even terabytes can be booted in a few minutes". ShadowProtect continues backing up the system while it is running in VirtualBoot system mode in the VirtualBox environment.
Tammie Coles, StorageCraft's European Business Development Director, said: “Using VirtualBoot SMBs (small and medium businesses) can quickly and easily undertake a temporary restoration of their servers whilst an IT technician repairs the physical machine to get it back up and running. When the repairs have been completed the technician can simply restore the original disk image to the physical server and then add any incremental images made while the system was running under VirtualBoot."
She says this can reduce the Recovery Time Objective to almost nil.
ShadowProtect also offers functionality that enables all backup images to be converted into a virtual machine either in VHD or VMDK format without the need to use any third-party technology.
The SMB Server edition of ShadowProtect costs £316, a larger Windows server edition £634, and the desktop edition £57. All three editions contain the Virtual Boot functionality. ®