Virtually Sober

If there is free booze and Virtualization; I'm there!

About

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Hi. My name is Joshua Stenhouse and I’m an IT Professional with over 10 years of experience in the industry. I have worked in companies ranging from small LTD to large PLC, Legal and provided professional VMware services to the channel.

I currently lead the EMEA Solutions Engineering team for Zerto. I use all of my virtualisation experience, with hands on knowledge, to explain the benefits of software defined disaster recovery and why it is the new standard in enterprise replication and recovery.

Before working for Zerto I was actually the first customer to trial Zerto outside of the US. This was back in August 2011 while working for a law firm based in Manchester. I was having major problems trying to replicate during working hours, using a popular VMware backup solution, as the snapshots severely affected the performance of my VMs. I resorted to replicating nightly, but a 24 hour Recovery Point Objective simply wasn’t good enough for the business. Even in a relatively small company turning over £5m+ losing 24 hours of information can be £10k+, never mind the £500k+  which the firm stood to lose with the existing solution I had implemented!

I had to find a better way of replicating my VMs for disaster recovery, but wanted to keep the simplicity of replicating on a per VM basis and not have to rely on the underlying storage to do the replication. On my daily read of the register I came across this article:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/06/23/zerto_announces_itself/

I was intrigued and had to see what Zerto could do for me. During initial presentations and discussions I heard claims of continuous replication, a Recovery Point Objective of seconds with no snapshots, restoring from previous points in time in increments every few seconds, a Recovery Time Objective of minutes and the ability to test the failover in working hours. I’ll be honest in that I didn’t believe a word as I couldn’t see how it could be done, but I had to try and find out.

After installing the trial on 2 separate hosts and protecting some test VMs between my datacentres; I then saw that all the claims were indeed true and it was the coolest thing I have ever seen!

I had no budget to buy Zerto, but I easily resolved this by asking my manager to come over to my desk to show him the software I was trialling. I then asked him how much data he thinks we could lose on our main case management system, how long it would take to recover and how complex it an operation would it be. I should add by this point I had already started protecting the application with Zerto as it seemed stupid not to! His reply was “24 hours for both and it would need you to be here?” to which I simply just said “watch this” and showed him, in 4 clicks, a failover test recovering to a point in time 20 seconds ago which came online in minutes. I then logged into the console and showed him the database loaded and application working. From this minute on purchasing Zerto was a complete no-brainer!

I now get paid to talk about Zerto (which should be a crime its so much fun) and run trials helping over people see just how amazing Zerto is and what it can do for them. I’m looking forward to sharing my PowerShell scripts which I’m sure you will find extremely useful in extending the functionality of Zerto.

All scripts provided on this blog are NOT supported by Zerto in any shape or form. It is therefore recommended to thoroughly test all scripts before running them in production. Please do not contact the Zerto support team regarding anything you have tried or read in my blog. I’m happy to provide ad-hoc support as I test my own scripts as much as time permits. If you have any questions or issues so please contact me or use the comment section on the relevant post. Thanks for reading,

Joshua

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