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Copy data virtualisation explained

What is copy data virtualisation, and could it save your customers millions in 2016?

You’ve heard of server virtualisation. You’ve heard of network virtualisation. But have you considered virtualising your data yet? Although they were once concepts that seemed outlandish, server and network virtualisation brought about a number of benefits for the users who came around to adopting them, eventually going on to become commonplace in today’s enterprise IT departments. We’ll soon be seeing the same for data virtualisation.

Copy data virtualisation – freeing organisations’ data from their legacy physical infrastructure – is increasingly seen as the way to deal with the huge amounts of data that are produced within organisations by data copying. In practice, copy data virtualisation makes virtual copies of ‘production quality' data available immediately to everyone in the business that needs it.

While the benefits of adopting copy data virtualisation are far ranging, from increased data protection, to instant data access and mobility, perhaps the most attractive one is the amount of money it saves organisations. Enterprises adopting copy data virtualisation have been able to save upwards of $3m in some cases, dramatically transforming their businesses and the way they function.

Here are five ways copy data virtualisation could streamline your business, improve performance and save you millions in 2016:

Storage footprint is reduced

A recent IDC study revealed that enterprises have an average of 13 physical copies of critical databases and file systems within their organisation, all of which take up storage space in data centres. This data then needs to be managed internally too. By virtualising this data, businesses are able to eliminate the need to have multiple physical copies, reducing the necessary amount of copies to just two - one set of production data and one “golden master copy” that can be virtually provisioned as many times as needed, at any time, any place. With a smaller storage footprint comes a smaller storage bill.

The removal of redundant technologies

To adhere with compliance standards for data protection, IT departments adopt a number of overlapping technologies, such as software for backups, snapshots, disaster recovery, and more. Data virtualisation removes the need for all of these redundant technologies by creating virtual, on-demand data copies.

A significant reduction in downtime

According to figures from Gartner, businesses can lose an average of $5,600 per minute in an outage, adding up to more than $300,000 per hour. Dated backup and DR systems are slow to recover data in the event of an outage, taking days or even weeks to recover data. When data has been virtualised, recovery times drop to minutes or hours, all while ensuring delivery of aggressive RTOs and RPOs.

Manpower is reduced

As virtualised data requires less maintenance and time spent monitoring redundant systems, as well as the reduced downtime, there is no longer the necessity for a large IT team focussed on sheer data management. Alternatively, the amount of time freed up by data virtualisation adoption means the team can now get on with more important projects that move the business forward and improve efficiencies across the organisation.

Moving your business forward

Like the way data virtualisation slashes recovery time during an outage, it also slashes provisioning time for data required during test and development. With data virtualisation, provisioning a data copy can take less than a minute and can even be self serviced. With the dev team able to focus more on application development and less on the process waiting for ops to produce test data for them, organisations can enjoy faster-time-to-market and move their business forward – in 2016.

Ash Ashutosh is CEO of Actifio

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