Datrium ships DVX 4.0 Software with new perks added since fall announcement

While Datrium DVX 4.0’s Cloud DVX backup and recovery service and Oracle RAC support have been made public before, other features, and two promotional offers, are being announced now for the first time.

Today, Datrium is announcing the shipment of DVX 4.0 Software, their third major software release in less than a year. Two major elements were made public when the product was originally announced last fall: their Cloud DVX SaaS-based VM backup and recovery service where they did a test preview at the AWS Re:Invent show in November; and their new support for Oracle RAC.  Others, however, have not been previously announced, including a free one year trial cloud backup subscription, and a ‘’no-questions-asked’’ 30-day money-back guarantee.

“This really completes the picture for Datrium DVX, which now offers three great products in a single system,” said Craig Nunes, Datrium’s VP of Marketing. “We provide Tier 1 hyper-converged infrastructure [HCI]. We provide scale-out backup. And we also provide Cloud DR. All those three are wrapped up in one single platform. This release delivers on the cloud functionality we promised at AWS, and expands on capabilities in the Tier 1 HCI area around security and resilience.”

Datrium’s value proposition has evolved from their original focus on server-powered flash to the HCI market, with the objective of making HCI a more scalable Tier 1 deployment for enterprises. Unlike the HCI vendors, they provide for separate scaling of CPU power and storage capacity by keeping the storage software on the host, so that speed can be added without an equivalent increase in capacity.

“HCI has made a huge impact in server and storage convergence, but we want to take convergence to the next level with full VM lifecycle convergence,” Nunes said.

Cloud DVX is a cloud-native instance of Datrium DVX that offers backup and recovery services for VMs running in DVX on-premises – at what Datrium says will be up to 10 times lower AWS fees than many cloud backup providers. U.S. list pricing for the service is $6,000 per 5 TB of S3 capacity per year, which translates into up to 30 TB of effective capacity.

While Cloud DVX itself was announced earlier, a promo running through this spring and summer was not.

“To incentivize customer adoption, we are introducing a trial license – a free one-year subscription for all new Cloud DVX systems on 4.0 Software,” Nunes said. “It includes one free terabyte on AWS, which with our global dedupe is good for about 6 TB of data. The customer is responsible for AWS fees – which would typically be about $350-400 a month. The program will be available through the end of September.”

Nunes thinks this promo will apply to a couple types of customers.

“One is the single data centre commercial market player looking for offsite backup,” he said. “However, larger enterprise customers often look to use Cloud DVX as a tape replacement. This is especially important when there is a need to get data back quickly. It is an order of magnitude faster with Cloud DVX than to put a call in to the tape bunker and get the tape on a truck and get it back.”

Oracle RAC support was the other major component of Cloud DVX announced in the fall.

“Oracle RAC has N-1 fault tolerance, and that is our model as well,” Nunes said. “It means that if you  have one server up, you still run. That’s very different from HCI, where if you lose servers, you lose a cluster.”

Peer Cache Mode is a new capability in DVX 4.0 Software.

“Peer Cache Mode is a VM fault tolerant feature,” Nunes indicated. “If all host SSD drives or even the host’s RAID controller fails, all of your VMs on the host stay online, because the affected host can use the SSDs on a neighboring host until the failed SSD or RAID controller are replaced. It buys you an added level of fault tolerance.”

“This is a unique feature,” said Tushar Agrawal, Datrium’s Director of Product Management. “Otherwise, if you lose one SSD on a single host, it can no longer host. This feature gives the admin time to act.”

Datrium Blanket Encryption both adds FIPS 140-2 validated mode, and allows organizations to set two decryption passphrases.

“This end-to-end fully deduped encryption technology encrypts data in RAM on the host,” Nunes said. “The addition of dual pass phrase support minimizes the chances of losing access to the data if an admin can’t remember their single pass phrase, is unavailable, or leaves the organization.

“We also added auditing to the system, which allows admins to continuously log any action across the system,” Nunes continued. “Any kind of changes made in the system will now be captured in our event log.”

“This auditing will be available for compliance purposes forever,” Agrawal indicated. “It takes place regardless of whether they authenticated through vCenter, a user interface, API or CLI.”

“We also announced a new Python-based SDK this quarter, to allow customers to automate some important functions of their DVX system like Snapshot, Clone and Replication,” Nunes added. “Service providers are an important customer, and this helps them roll DVX into their own orchestration and automation.”

Last, and not least, comes another new program.

“We have formalized a 30 day total customer satisfaction guarantee, which has been there implicitly since we went to General Availability,” Nunes said. “If, for any reason, the customer is not happy, within 30 days they can ship the software back and get a full refund.”

Datrium sells through a 100 per cent channel strategy, and has added another 40 partners or so since the fall, to now muster around 170.

“We continue to see interest from the channel because of our pace of innovation on the platform,” Nunes said. “We have also demonstrated very high win rates versus other HCI. It’s a great extension to a partner already carrying HCI, especially regional VARs. The big national solution providers will have the organizational alignment to carry a broad range of vendors to align with whatever the customer wants, but the regional VARs are more likely to have to place their bets because it’s much harder for them to carry everything. This is something that is easy to offer to someone who is retiring a big VNX array.”

“We enable partners who have strong relationships with any server or blade vendor to have a strong play with us, more so than some of the other HCI vendors,” Agrawal noted.”