2021. What an interesting year. With the world turned upside down by a pandemic that seemingly had its sights set on...
ETI-NET – further travels see us return to Texas to participate in N2TUG with a new product announcement.
The participation by ETI-NET in Regional User Group (RUG) meetings continued into June and this time, it was back down to Grapevine, Texas, for the NonStop community N2TUG RUG event. Grapevine, a major city within the Dalla / Forth Worth area, has been the site of previous events and offered a good venue to meet with customers and prospects. This year, ETI-NET was a Gold Sponsor of the event and once again, the turn out by the NonStop community didn’t disappoint.
Following on from events in Scotland and Chile, it gave ETI-NET time to cover a number of new developments taking place with its flagship product, the HPE NonStop BackBox Virtual Tape Controller (VTC). Even for the most dyed-in-the-wool NonStop supporter, fault tolerance may be the most important attribute of NonStop, and yet, disasters do happen, and whether it’s out of caution or in response to regulatory or legislative mandates, it’s just prudent to take backups of your NonStop system and the best media for doing so is tape. However, long gone are NonStop systems equipped with real tape drives as, for some time, it’s been virtualized tape and the development initiated by ETI-NET led to its product being incorporated into the HPE product offerings.
For quite some time, ETI-NET has been running the BackBox VTC software on ProLiant servers tailored specifically for the task. As a complementary product to the entry-level HPE NonStop Virtual Tape Repository (VTR), the HPE NonStop BackBox VTC offers the benefits of a completely virtualized software solution that is easy to integrate with NonStop systems whether they are running the L or J series NonStop OS. With the announcement of the ProLiant Gen 10 system, it was only a matter of time before HPE and ETI-NET would turn to it for support of BackBox and just recently, HPE NonStop BackBox VTC R3 became generally available.
HPE described the new server in a product announcement published June 7, 2019, stating how “this new model of BackBox VTC is based on the HPE ProLiant Gen10 technology and runs the HPE NonStop BackBox software and Microsoft Windows Server 2016 OS.” According to ETI-NET COO, Sylvain Tétreault, in addition to running Windows 2016, “it helped considerably that with the ProLiant Gen 10 we had a server that comes with a faster processor and with more memory, supports Fiber Channel 16Gb and provided access to more storage capabilities.”
In case you ever wondered about real tapes, HPE continues to offer multiple options –
Physical tape support options
Enterprise backup systems
If the consolidation of backup content across the enterprise to common physical tape silos is required, HPE NonStop BackBox VTC R3 can participate by backing up or archiving virtual tape images to EBS servers.
Import/export support options
Current model tape drives—including the latest LTO tape drives—can be connected to BackBox VTC via SAS or FC. This type of connection allows the import of any physical tape content to virtual tape storage and the export of virtual tapes to HPE NonStop-readable physical media. Legacy tape drives can also be used.
Even as the industry turns to virtualization of everything as it looks to provide all products on the basis of a service supported by consumption pricing – there are still those agencies that simply must have “their tape.” More importantly, perhaps is the inclusion of the HPE NonStop BackBox VTC R3 and the many storage options under the overall banner of NonStop – bringing fault tolerance even to your processing of media that we just cannot seem to do without!
There will be more events held throughout the world during the remainder of 2019 with perhaps the annual NonStop Technical Boot Camp 2019 to be held in Burlingame, California, in November being the biggest event of the year for the NonStop community. This is the event to hear about all of HPEs plans for NonStop and to see the hardware and software roadmaps in detail. ETI-NET will be present, and plans are already being developed. It is at events like this that the NonStop community gets an opportunity to hear from everyone else in the community and it’s always a great venue for interactions between NonStop users and vendors – hope to see you there!
However, having said this, it is at events like N2TUG where ETI-NET can hear firsthand about the backup needs of some of the NonStop communities biggest users in a more intimate setting, and it is a very good sign that the NonStop community supports such meetings. Should your plans call for embracing virtualized tape backup deployments and you have any questions at all on this important capability, ETI-NET would welcome a chance to talk with you about our product offerings in support of NonStop. Just call us or send us an email; we look forward to hearing from you!