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What’s up with HPE StoreOnce and IBM Spectrum Protect (besides a new name)?


CC.jpgBy Cyrus Cama, Technical Marketing Engineer, HPE Backup, Recovery and Archive



What’s in a name? Let me first start off by saying that I have to keep reminding myself to say Spectrum Protect as opposed to Tivoli Storage whats up_ATSB_shutterstock_128610176_29Jan_Blog_sized.jpgManager. This feels a bit like when I first started working with ADSM, and IBM changed the name to Tivoli Storage Manager. 

Now, we all know that whatever backup ISV you use in your enterprise, you know that its product can, well, back up your data. But this BURA Sunday, ask yourself: How confident are you that you will be able to recover your data—and meet your SLAs around your RTOs and RPOs? 

How can you offload workload on your busy server?

The whole reason we back up data is to be able to recover it, not just for daily operational restores but also, most importantly, for disaster recovery.

Spectrum Protect is a different backup application from the others in the market as it is a progressive (incremental-forever) backup product that retains data at the file level for a given number of days. The Spectrum Protect client software is able to backup just about every OS and application. It also has a special backup agent to literally backup almost any third-party application, database or virtual environment. That’s why you will typically find Spectrum Protect running in very large enterprise accounts, in what are generally considered to be Big Data shops. Typically, you will find that Spectrum Protect is responsible for not only backing up all corporate data but also restoring it and performing full site disaster recovery.

Spectrum Protect backup servers are not only busy backing up all backup client data within a defined backup window. They also need to run housekeeping operations. Here is a summary of core and admin housekeeping functions that keep your Spectrum Protect Server busy 24 hours a day:


The above is part of the reason why Spectrum Protect shops are very complex environments, and are often plagued with the everyday problems that the backup admins deal with. Some of the challenges are:

  • Spectrum Protect backup servers busy doing more than just backups
  • Lack of funding to the backup enterprise
  • Lack of dedicated manpower
  • Not enough resources (i.e. older servers, not enough physical tape drives)
  • Not enough hours in a day to get backups and housekeeping completed
  • Very little or even no disaster recovery testing

Why more attention and money should be invested in the backup environment

I often find myself having to inform upper management at client sites that IBM Spectrum Protect is the single biggest application running in their environment. It touches everything in the company and it's responsible for backing up and retaining PBs worth of data—and often restoring all that data.

Since most IBM Spectrum Protect environments perform progressive incremental backups, every vendor’s deduplication appliance will give the same overall dedupe ratio of approximately 5:1. However, “structured data” like databases and email backups follow a full and incremental backup paradigm. Due to the nature of the structured data types, you will see much better dedupe ratios over the incremental forever unstructured data types.

Unlike the other global dedupe VTL appliances out there, HPE StoreOnce dedupes at the store level, thus effectively using the backend storage more efficiently. StoreOnce best practices are to pair similar data types together to ensure that you not only get the best possible dedupe ratios, but also get the best recovery speeds. HPE StoreOnce restores at near-to-equal backup speeds for recovery so you can meet your SLAs. This is how HPE StoreOnce fits in perfectly with Spectrum Protect environments. The backup administrators are already accustomed to pairing similar backup data types together by creating storage pools for these different data types (i.e. RMAN, SQL, Windows, Exchange, AIX, etc.).

Sanitized Design.jpg

What are the benefits of deploying HP StoreOnce in your Spectrum Protect enterprise?

Well first, you can reduce the role of physical tape in your Spectrum Protect backup enterprise by keeping more data on disk for longer periods of time and offloading to tape on a less frequent basis. For older backup or archive data, we still recommend copying to physical tape.

If you setup replication on the VTLs and NAS shares you created on StoreOnce for your Spectrum Protect Servers, you will only be moving block-level deduped changes over the WAN to the target StoreOnce appliance. This can potentially eliminate the need to create daily copy pool data, and also eliminate the need to run offsite reclamations, as there is no copy pool to now manage within Spectrum Protect.

Running your daily Spectrum Protect full database backup to HPE StoreOnce, and then replicating offsite to the target StoreOnce appliance will also protect your Spectrum Protect enterprise. StoreOnce is used not only for daily operational restores within your company but also for full disaster recovery. What’s most important to note is the near instantaneous SP Database recovery time at D/R by replicating StoreOnce devices. The overall benefit to using StoreOnce in your backup enterprise will be a reduced workload on your Spectrum Protect servers. You are taking the deduplication workload off the SP Servers and moving it to HPE StoreOnce, a dedicated backup appliance.

Dig deeper, learn more

Read more about this path to data protection with HPE StoreOnce and Spectrum Protect. (Brochure download.) And see how Alliance Resource Partners (ARLP), a diversified producer and marketer of coal, sees 70% performance increase with HPE StoreOnce, taking advantage of the tight integration with IBM Spectrum Protect. (Case study download.)

HPE StoreOnce delivers scalability and high availability.

With the HPE StoreOnce enterprise model 6500 (and the soon to be released StoreOnce 6600), you can start from 120TB and scale up to 1.7PB of usable storage before dedupe.  HPE StoreOnce is the only High Available Active/Active failover dedupe VTL solution.  The HPE StoreOnce 6500, with its multi-node scale-out design, has built-in redundancy to provide autonomic failover of Spectrum Protect backup jobs. That means backups will restart as soon as the service sets restart on the secondary node. So backups and recoveries can proceed with minimal interruption even with node failures.

Want to learn more? The Spectrum Protect 1 Day Workshop is here.

Earlier, we talked about how a Spectrum Protect Backup Enterprise is very complex, with a lot of activities running besides backups, but there are also a lot of moving parts.  There are:

  • Backup clients
  • SAN/LAN/WAN infrastructure
  • Storage devices (physical and virtual)
  • Multiple data centers, in multiple geographic locations

If you are serious about deploying HPE StoreOnce for enterprise backup, here's what you need to know:

  • Determine exactly what data will be sent to that appliance.
  • Find out how large the StoreOnce appliances must be to accommodate the nightly backup workload, as well as future capacity growth through retentions.
  • Data protection strategies and disaster recovery approaches need to be re-evaluated and changed to accommodate the attributes of the new storage and backup capabilities.
  • Spectrum Protect is the single largest application in your environment (protecting PBs of data).
  • Backup touches everything in your environment and also, in most cases, recovers everything.

Knowing and understanding the backup environment will help you understand which HPE StoreOnce appliance is appropriate for your backup/recovery and disaster recovery needs.

In this workshop, we work with you to investigate how StoreOnce can help address your backup and recovery issues in your IBM Spectrum Protect enterprise.

To find out more about HPE StoreOnce, or if you are interested in a Spectrum Protect/StoreOnce Workshop session, please reach out to your local HPE Storage Sales Rep. 




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Ravindra Tumu

Your document is not much useful for those who really want to migrate from IBM Protector to HP StoreOnce.

Let us know, if you have provide much more details on it.





The migration process is not covered in the blog.  I am more than happy to speak with you, and also show you real world examples of what we have done for clients using TSM and StoreOnce.

Feel free to drop a note to

Thanks Cyrus.