Backup and disaster recovery (DR) … yes, essential services for many MSPs. But let’s admit it, backup and DR can be a boring conversation these days. Well, until you bring LucidLink into the equation.
If you’re not yet familiar with what LucidLink has going on, here’s the quick pitch:
In short, LucidLink is a SaaS offering where a software client is installed on a Windows, Linux, or macOS machine. LucidLink places a distributed file system on object storage (in the cloud or on-prem) and then streams the data bits on-demand over many parallel streams to and from that object storage in a secure manner where only the client has the encryption key. Only the metadata is distributed and synced across the clients. The metadata on the client points to the data that’s sitting in the object storage repository. Additionally, unlike the typical 1 file = 1 object relationship, LucidLink creates a 1 file = many objects model that enables only the bits of data currently required by a client application to be streamed to that client.
The result? With LucidLink, cloud object storage gets the performance and accessibility of local NAS type storage appliances but with the scalability, redundancy, and economics that’s only available with object storage.
For an MSP, this can be huge. Offering a managed backup service, MSPs typically put in place a storage appliance for the backups. These storage appliances come in a plethora of flavors … USB drives, Linux NASs, Windows NASs, low-cost high-capacity storage boxes, etc. With this comes the inevitable … hardware failures, hardware end-of-life, and sometimes outright dismal storage performance that can cripple restores.
Regardless of the solution being used, if the backup product can send its backups to a local folder on the machine being backed up or to an SMB or NFS share on the LAN, then LucidLink and a cloud object storage provider like Google Cloud, IBM Cloud, Amazon S3, Microsoft Azure, etc. can be used. Essentially this becomes a “backup directly to the cloud” architecture.
Think about it … you can have the scalability, economics, and availability provided by these cloud object storage providers and then combine that with the accessibility, security, and performance that LucidLink delivers … this is a no-brainer. The days of the backup appliance as we know it are numbered.
Now, I did have a good friend of mine recently reply to me after hearing this saying, “Well, this is all fine, but what happens if my internet connection is down?”. I was shocked at hearing this! I said, “Jack, your company, uses email, your company uses a VoIP telephone system, your company uses Office 365, your company uses Salesforce … Jack your company is already 100% tied to the internet being up and running! Before you go any further, tell me … how often is your internet connection down?”. His response was, “Ok, got a point.”.
Moving on, restores and especially DRaaS become really cool with LucidLink.
Various backup technologies today offer methods to boot a VM from a backup. This makes things interesting with LucidLink. If I have, for example, a virtual disk sitting in a LucidLink Filespace with Amazon S3 as the object storage repository, I can boot that VM on a local hypervisor… or from a hypervisor anywhere … with the virtual disk in S3 or any other object storage location!
Do you see where this is going?
We, LucidLink, have a video out on YouTube where we boot 100 VMs in a local VMware vSphere environment where the storage is NFS storage that’s being presented to the vSphere environment via LucidLink on a VM where the cloud object storage provider is Amazon S3. Of course, this works. To see it for yourself, go to https://youtu.be/fWcmtDLH0MA
This is all possible since LucidLink does not need to download the virtual disks before we use them. LucidLink simply streams the bits that are needed on-demand.
Once again, think about it … you can have the scalability, economics, and availability provided by cloud object storage providers like Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and others and then combine that with the accessibility, security, and performance that LucidLink delivers … this is a no-brainer.