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Symantec V-Ray – The End of the Dark Ages of Virtualization

Created: 03 May 2011
Peter_E's picture
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Symantec Vision here in Las Vegas is a fitting place for the announcement of V-Ray, our ability to provide unique insight into virtual environments for both storage and security.  Virtualization, like Vegas, is both new and old.  The old side of virtualization, as an attendee at Vegas reminded me, dates back to the mainframe days. I remember those days. And the new side, links to our world of open-systems.  Similarly, Vegas surprises you in its ability to take old material and create something new. So how does Symantec V-Ray bridge old and new together? In a word, it’s about enabling greater visibility into virtual environments so that customers can not only move virtualize more quickly, but maximize their new environments.

With a legacy of intellectual property around file systems, security, and storage, Symantec is uniquely positioned to help customers not only bridge the gap between old and new, between physical and virtual, but enable them to more efficiently manage a virtualized data center.  With an increasing number of complex workloads wrapped up in virtual machines (VMs), organizations are challenged to maintain the same degree of security and protection from a physical environment and also leverage the benefits brought by virtualization.  Attaining the service levels for these business systems requires a high degree of visibility into virtual environments.  Just like a doctor’s X-Ray gives visibility to see what is inside, Symantec’s V-Ray allows companies to see into VMs so they can see what’s inside to better secure, protect, backup and recover virtual machines.

V-Ray visibility is delivered across Symantec products for virtual environment -  security, storage, and backup - because virtualized data is real data that should be protected not only as well as physical machines, but in a manner fitting their unique attributes.

How do you avoid backing up huge amounts of wasteful redundant data?  V-Ray for NetBackup and Backup Exec sees duplicate files and helps you avoid the redundancy.  How do you secure your VMs while still running at full speed? V-Ray enabled endpoint security SEP 12 knows which files have already been scanned on other VMs and knows to how to skip that scanning and keep on going.   How do you know how many VMs are running your environment?  V-Ray enabled IT Management Suite supports quick and complete identification of all VMs active on your LAN.

Do you have to wait for a new product release to get V-Ray? No, V-Ray represent a set of technologies across the Symantec portfolio that not only give customers greater insight into their virtual environments, but acts upon this insight to simplify management, lower IT operational costs, and improve IT agility. 

V-Ray for backup and recovery extends across our NetBackup and Backup Exec product lines.  What does this mean?

  • Manage physical and virtual systems data protection through one console (fewer tools is good)
  • Backup VMs as entire VMs without sacrificing file recovery and without taxing your infrastructure
  • Deduplication both virtual and physical machine data globally and store that data in a single pool
  • Automate protection of VMs regardless of where they live without taxing operations or infrastructure

Symantec isn’t new to this game. Our countless awards for virtual machine data protection over the last 4 years is a testament to our commitment and partnership with other industry leaders like VMware.   A number of customers will be speaking at our Vision conference here in Las Vegas on just this topic.  Maine Medical Center saw significant benefits using NetBackup to manage their virtual environment (read more here), including a 16.6 hour reduction in backup times, a 90% reduction in storage via deduplication, and 5-fold decrease in disk utilization across an environment with petabytes of data to protect.

V-Ray extends beyond data protection and storage. As in Vegas, you can’t simply replay an old tune with new instruments and expect to last. You need to change what you deliver for a new audience with fresh expectations. So I'll throw in a bit about security, even though I'm posting in the backup and archiving blog.  With V-Ray, Symantec Endpoint Protection gives you unprecedented visibility into the security of your virtual environments.  Symantec Endpoint Protection 12.1 secures your virtual infrastructure while using less memory, less CPU power and less Disk I/O than any other security solution in its class.  How do we do this differently?

•             Symantec Endpoint Protection can see the risk posed by a file on a virtual machine without opening or scanning it.  SEP can spot risks other protection systems miss, and it reduces scan overhead by up to 70%.

•             With V-Ray, Symantec Endpoint Protection can separate physical clients from virtual ones, and it can apply appropriate security policies – automatically. 

•             Symantec Endpoint Protection can “see” what files have been scanned and can share those results across your virtual environment – reducing scan overhead without compromising security.  This is the de-duplication of file scanning.

•             Symantec Endpoint Protection can scan dark images, shining light even on VMs that are offline. Now malware can no longer hide in offline images. 

•             With integrated network access control, Symantec Endpoint Protection can ensure that VMs are updated and fully compliant with security policies before they can access your network

With V-Ray from Symantec we can deliver best of breed backup, storage, and security to accelerate virtualization of business critical applications.  Expect to hear more about V-Ray over the coming months.