Dell Technologies unveils next generation of PowerProtect data protection portfolio

New PowerProtect DP series integrated appliances were the main event, but the announcement also included a key certification for their PowerProtect Cyber Recovery Data Vault and enhancements to PowerProtect Data Manager.

PowerProtect DP series

Today, Dell Technologies is making a series of announcements around their Dell EMC PowerProtect portfolio. The big one was the next generation of their PowerProtect DP series of integrated appliances. However, Dell also announced that PowerProtect Cyber Recovery has become the first data vaulting solution endorsed by Sheltered Harbor to enhance cyber resiliency. They also announced new enhancements to PowerProtect Data Manager software.

“This is really all about PowerProtect, with new PowerProtect appliances, and an expansion of the PowerProtect family,” said Caitlin Gordon, vice president of marketing at Dell Technologies.

Gordon identified customer data challenges from the Dell Technologies Global Data Protection Index Snapshot from last spring.

94% of customers now choose cloud deployments for new applications,” she said. “At the same time, 48% are struggling to find data protection solutions for containers. The rise of Kubernetes means that the data protection conversation with Kubernetes has become front and centre.”

Gordon noted how this trend coincided with a major shift in the $4 billion dollar purpose-built backup market, in which the company has been in for over a decade, and had been a major player since EMC acquired Data Domain, a target appliance.

“Target appliances was the original focus, and they are still significant, but a lot of growth recently has come from integrated appliances,” Gordon said. “Integrated appliances are all about simplicity, giving both software and hardware protection in a single appliance.”

The centrepiece of todays, announcement, the new Dell EMC PowerProtect DP integrated appliance series, responds to these transitions in the market, providing  a modern integrated appliance strategy for data protection, which includes backup, recovery, replication, deduplication, cloud readiness with disaster recovery, and long-term retention to the public cloud.

“We are introducing our next generation of integrated data protection appliances, now branded as PowerProtect Data Protection series appliances,” said Rob Emsley, director of product marketing for Dell EMC’s data protection products. Dell has been rebranding all of their storage-related portfolios with the Power brand.

“This follows up last year’s refresh of our Data Domain line,” Emsley continued. “PowerProtect will be our single family of both integrated and target offerings, with the target offerings having the choice of our, or third party software. Integrated is becoming more of the norm for customers when they evaluate what they want to use next. It’s growing at twice the rate of target-based.” The new PowerProtect DP series appliances are the next generation of integrated appliances, while the PowerProtect DD appliances are the next version of the Data Domain target appliances.

Emsley cited some impressive metrics based on Dell’s internal testing against the old version of their integrated appliances. This includes up to 45% faster restores, up to 38% faster backups, and up to 50% more IOPS on the performance side.

“On the efficiency dimension, have up to 30% higher logical capacity because of change in compression algorithms with higher deduplication rates, and up to 65x deduplication,” he added.

Dell is stressing three key messages in marketing these new appliances: simplicity, efficiency, and agility.

“A key value message is that simplicity comes to the forefront because we offer uniquely both integrated and target-based appliances within the same family,” Emsley said. The efficiency lowers costs, and the agility continues to support customer requirements around cloud, VMware and Cyber Recovery.

The last piece of the appliance news is their availability within Dell Technologies on Demand, part of Dell’s Project APEX strategy of eventually making everything available as an on-demand service

“Both appliances can be consumed in our pay-per-use consumption model,” Emsley said. “They are available as a fully managed data protection service, managed by Dell Technologies and available as a 1, 3 or 5 year contract.”

The second part of the announcement highlighted that Dell EMC PowerProtect Cyber Recovery is the first on-premises turnkey data vaulting solution to receive a Sheltered Harbor endorsement. Sheltered Harbor is a not-for-profit, industry-led initiative launched in 2015 specifically to enhance the stability and resiliency of the financial sector, given increased cyber-attacks.

“For five years, we have delivered Cyber Recovery with a dedicated vault,” Emsley said. “A couple years ago, we added the CyberSense solution to provide machine learning-based capability to ensure there are no ransomware fingerprints in the data being moved into the vault.”

Emsley said that being the first solution of this type to receive the Sheltered Harbor endorsement is important.

“We have met the certification criteria, and this is the first Sheltered Harbor turnkey data vaulting solution,” he stated. “While Sheltered Harbor is focused on financial services, having a certification from Dell Technologies endorsed under that program is important for any industry.”

PowerProtect Data Manager UI

Emsley also announced enhancements to PowerProtect Data Manager, which was originally released last year.

“Public cloud support now includes Azure and AWS deployment with 256TB PowerProtect DDVE,” he stated.

In addition, Emsley restated announcements Dell recently made at VMworld around support for VMware Tanzu, native support for policy-based management, and a tech preview.

“This is a preview of new technology integrated into VMware vSphere, which will provide an easier and more efficient mechanism for doing virtual machine data protection,” Emsley said. “Expect that to be generally available within the first half of next year.”

Kubernetes support, which was introduced into PowerProtect Data Manager last year, continues to be extended, with the expansion of application support to PostgreSQL and Cassandra. Kubernetes distribution support was also announced for the AKS and EKS services in the Azure and Amazon clouds.

Emsley said that the data protection portfolio are strong channel products, and there are new opportunities here.

“Many customers have the previous generations of appliances deployed, so this is an opportunity for a tech refresh, for customer with appliances over 3-5 years in age,” he stated. The Cyber Recovery opportunity is a net-new add-on to many customers’ environments. The appliance refresh is a good opportunity to consider implementing a Cyber Recovery vault.”

The Dell EMC PowerProtect DP series appliances – DP4400, DP5400, DP5900, and DP8900 – will be available globally in December 2020. PowerProtect Data Manager enhancements are globally available now.