As ESG often tries to do, here is a short summary video of ESG’s impressions from a major industry event – Microsoft Ignite, held in Atlanta over September 26-29, 2016 – from a backup perspective.
In the video, I suggested that Microsoft is a leader in Windows data protection. Certainly, this is not to disparage the many Microsoft partners that have built whole companies and product lines around data protection. And from a revenue perspective, their backup offerings wouldn’t register at all. But …
- Almost every version of Windows has shipped with a built-in backup utility to address the immediate, per-machine need for ad-hoc backups or file roll-back, with today’s “Previous Versions” functionality more closely resembling software-based snapshots than “backup” per se. That said, it has always been recognized that a more full-featured, multi-server solution is almost always warranted.
- Of course, Microsoft has been producing Volume Shadowcopy Services (VSS) for over a decade, which is the underpinnings of how any backup vendor protects data within Windows systems.
- Microsoft has been shipping its “for sale” backup offering, Data Protection Manager (within System Center), for over a decade. And though a good number of Hyper-V centric environments use DPM, the greater impact is how DPM gave/gives Microsoft insights into how to improve VSS, thereby improving all data protection offerings in market.
The point is – Microsoft is not new to “backup.” It hasn’t previously been a monetary focus, but they have consistently recognized backup as intrinsic to a management story and assured satisfaction with Windows Server and its application server offerings. All of that may be changing with Azure as the crown jewel of the Microsoft ecosystem and OMS as a cloud-based management stack.
Azure Backup is a key pillar of OMS, just like “backup” is a key pillar to many management strategies, alongside “provisioning,” “monitoring,” and “patching.” IT Operations folks that are responsible for the latter three activities are continually wanting to do backups (as preparation for recoveries) as well … which makes Azure Backup something to watch for its own sake, and the sake of the data protection market in 2017 as many organizations are reassessing their partners during their embrace of cloud services.