Jason Buffington

Senior Analyst

  • Blogs
    Aug 25, 2014

    Backup Alone Just Isn't Enough! (vBlog)

    With average SLAs for all systems (not just “critical” or Tier-One platforms) shrinking to <3 hours or <1 hour, it's really hard to diagnose the problem, restore the data set, and resume business in those timelines. Instead, one should strongly consider combining snapshots, replication, and backup for a comprehensive data protection strategy – ideally using a single management UI to control all of it.


  • esg video capsules
    Aug 18, 2014

    ESG Video Capsule: Backup is no longer enough

    In this Video Capsule, ESG Senior Analyst Jason Buffington discusses why backup alone is no longer enough when developing a data protection strategy, and the importance of paying attention to ALL of the components of the Data Protection Spectrum.

  • Blogs
    Aug 13, 2014

    vBlog: Everyone Should Archive (period)

    • Even if you aren’t in a highly regulated industry.
    • Even if you aren’t a Fortune 500 enterprise.
    • Even if you don’t keep data over five years.

    Here's a video to talk about why.

  • Blogs
    Aug 12, 2014

    What If Cloud-Backup-Storage was Free?

    Not backup-as-a-service, but just cloud storage that could be used to supplement a backup. Sure, there are a lot of STaaS (storage-as-a-service) folks that will give you a small amount of capacity to try their platform, knowing full well that you are going to want more and be willing to pay for it. But there used to be a company that would give you as much storage in the cloud as you wanted – Symform.  Symform was my 2011 “Coolest Disruptive Technology that most folks hadn’t heard of yet” award winner. 

  • Blogs
    Aug 7, 2014

    What I Am Looking for at VMworld 2014 … a Data Protection Perspective

    For the past few years, the big data protection trend in virtual environments was simply to ensure reliable backups (and restores) of VMs. That alone hasn’t always been easy, but with the newer Data Protection APIs from VMware (VADP), that is becoming table-stakes – and the real differentiation coming from the agility to restore (speed and granularity), as well as manageability and integration.

    And while there is certainly still a lot of room for many vendors to improve in those areas, the industry overall needs to move past the original question of “Can I back up your VM?” and even past “How quick can I restore your VM?

    Here's what I am looking for at VMworld 2014.

  • Blogs
    Jul 29, 2014

    A Replication Feature is NOT a Disaster Recovery Plan

    Without your data, you don’t have BC/DR, you have people looking for jobs.

    But that does not mean that if you have your data remotely, you have a BC/DR plan.  Having “survivable data” means that you have the IT elements necessary to either roll up your sleeves and attempt to persevere, or (preferably) the means by which to invoke a pre-prepared BC/DR set of mitigation and/or resumption activities.

    BC/DR is not a “feature” or a button or a checkbox in a product, unless those elements are part of invoking the orchestrated IT resumption processes that are part of a broader organizational set of cultural and expertise-based approaches to resuming business, not just restarting/rehosting IT

  • Blogs
    Jul 14, 2014

    EMC’s 2014 MegaLaunch - a Tour de Force? (Includes Video)

    July 2014 saw the fourth EMC “MegaLaunch,” featuring a broad swathe of announcements across EMC’s portfolio. While the range of news - and associated materials - to consume can seem daunting, this 8 minute “On Location” video blog (featuring ESG analysts Jason Buffington, Terri McClure and Mark Peters) will give you some key headlines and commentary in a very efficient and easily digested manner….

  • Blogs
    Jul 14, 2014

    EMC Announces Another Step Towards Backupless-backups

    Last week, in London, EMC made several announcements – many of which hinged on the VMAX3 platform – but the one of most interest to me was ProtectPoint, where those new VMAX machines will be able to send their backup data directly from production storage to protection storage (EMC Data Domain) without an intermediary backup server. 

    I mentioned this in my blog last week as an example of the fact that, while “backup” is evolving, those kinds of evolutions require that the role of both the Backup Administrator (which should not be thought of as a Data Protection Manager/DPM) and the Storage Administrator (or any other workload manager that is becoming able to protect their own data) need to evolve, as well.

  • Blogs
    Jul 8, 2014

    Workload-enabled Data Protection is the Future … and that is a good thing

    When asked “what is the future for data center data protection?” my most frequent answer is that DP becomes less about dedicated backup admins with dedicated backup infrastructure … and more about DP savvy being part of the production workload, co-managed by the DP and workload administrators.

    To be clear, as workload owner enablement continues to evolve, the role of the “Data Protection Manager” (formerly known as the “backup administrator”) also evolves – but it does not and cannot go away. DPMs should be thrilled to be out of some of the mundane aspects of tactical data protection and even more elated that the technology innovations like snap-to-dedupe integration, application-integration, etc. create real partnerships between the workload owners and the data protection professionals. And it does need to be a partnership, because while the technical crossovers are nice, they must be coupled with shared responsibility.

  • Blogs
    Jun 16, 2014

    Data Protection Impressions from the Dell Analyst Conference 2014

    I recently had the opportunity to attend the Dell Annual Analyst Conference (DAAC), where Michael Dell and the senior leadership team gave updates on their businesses and cast a very clear strategy around four core pillars: Transform (cloud) ... Connect (mobility) ... Inform (Big Data) ... and Protect.

    Protect?! YAY!!  As a 25-year backup dude who has been waiting to see how the vRanger and NetVault products would be aligned with AppAssure and the Ocarina-accelerated deduplication appliances, I was really jazzed to see “Protect” as a core pillar of the Dell story. But then the dialogue took an interesting turn.

  • Blogs
    Jun 9, 2014

    Wrap-Up on Backup from EMC World 2014 -- Part II, Strategy

    Last week, I published a video summary of the data protection product news from EMC World 2014, with the help of some of my EMC Data Protection friends. To follow that up, I asked EMC's Rob Emsley to knit the pieces together around the Data Protection strategy from EMC.

  • Blogs
    Jun 6, 2014

    Wrap-Up on Backup from EMC World 2014 -- Part I, Products

    During EMC World 2014 in Las Vegas last month, I had the chance to visit with several EMC product managers on what was announced from a product perspective, as well as overall data protection strategy. 

  • Blogs
    May 19, 2014

    vBlog: How to Ensure the Availability of the Modern Data Center

    When you really boil down the core of IT -- it's to deliver the services and access to data that the business requires. That includes understanding the needs of the business, its dependencies on things like its data, and then ensuring the availability of that data.

    "Availability" can be achieved in two ways = Resilience and Recoverability.

    • Resilience are the clustering/mirroring technologies that many of us think of as "traditional high availability.”
    • Recoverability are the myriad methods of rapidly restoring functionality through the use of technologies like near-instantaneous VM restoration or leveraging snapshots.
  • News
    May 18, 2014

    Druva Eases Enterprise Endpoint eDiscovery - CIO Today

  • Blogs
    May 12, 2014

    EMC World 2014 – Initial ESG Analyst Impressions (Video)

    As usual ESG had a strong analyst representation at this year’s EMC World, held last week in Las Vegas. Watch this 6 minute video blog, to get a flavor of the event and to hear the key “takeaways” and initial high level insights from a broad spectrum of ESG experts – on the storage ‘beat,’ there’s Terri McClure and myself, for data protection there is Jason Buffington, and you can also see and hear from Kevin Rhone (channels/partners) and Kerry Dolan (ESG Lab).

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Jason Buffington focuses primarily on data protection, along with Windows Server infrastructure, management and virtualization. He has concentrated on data protection and availability technologies since 1989 and has been a Certified Business Continuity Planner (CBCP), a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer and Trainer (MSCE/MCT), and a Microsoft MVP in file system and storage solutions.

Full Biography


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