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 Howard Marks

Profile of Howard Marks

Network Computing Blogger
News & Commentary Posts: 141

Howard Marks is founder and chief scientist at Deepstorage LLC, a storage consultancy and independent test lab based in Santa Fe, N.M. and concentrating on storage and data center networking. In more than 25 years of consulting, Marks has designed and implemented storage systems, networks, management systems and Internet strategies at organizations including American Express, J.P. Morgan, Borden Foods, U.S. Tobacco, BBDO Worldwide, Foxwoods Resort Casino and the State University of New York at Purchase. The testing at DeepStorage Labs is informed by that real world experience.

He has been a frequent contributor to Network Computing and InformationWeek since 1999 and a speaker at industry conferences including Comnet, PC Expo, Interop and Microsoft's TechEd since 1990. He is the author of Networking Windows and co-author of Windows NT Unleashed (Sams).

He is co-host, with Ray Lucchesi of the monthly Greybeards on Storage podcast where the voices of experience discuss the latest issues in the storage world with industry leaders.  You can find the podcast at:

Articles by Howard Marks
posted in January 2008

Best Laid Plans, Or Cables...

On Tuesday night, two unrelated undersea cables in the Mediterranean were cut within hours of each other, disrupting Internet and phone service to Egypt and, more significantly, to India, the call center capital of the world.

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Continuity's RecoveryGuard Reveals DR Flaws

Today's large IT environments are dynamic places; applications, volumes, and file systems are added, deleted, and reallocated on SANs on a daily basis. The disaster recovery plan, on the other hand, is updated and tested on an annual basis. As a result, most organizations think their data is better protected than it really is.

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CommVault Watches Your Backups

CommVault's new Remote Operations Management Service (ROMS) will watch your backups for you, assuming, of course, you use CommVault's Galaxy backup program. And if you spring for the diamond level, a human being will even call you in the middle of the night to discuss what went wrong. Backup administrator is a thankless job at best. People only notice when something goes wrong and then they're breathing down your back, acting like 6-year-olds in the back seat, saying "When will we be back up?"

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Backup Appliance Replication -- Boon Or Boondoggle

Traditionally, your options for getting data off-site for disaster recovery were limited to shipping tapes or real-time data replication. Since tape shipping results in recovery point objectives (RPOs) and recovery time objectives (RTOs) of hours at best, and days in most cases, and real-time replication is expensive, there was a real lack of a middle ground. As de-duplicating backup appliances, including those from Sepaton, Quantum, Data Domain, and FalconStor (including OEMs from Copan to EMC

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EMC Takes Mozy To The Enterprise

It seemed like a strange fit when enterprise storage giant EMC bought Berkeley Data Systems, operators of the Mozy consumer online backup service. After all, many, if not most, of Mozy's users were taking advantage of the free plan that allowed them to backup up to 2 GB of data. These obviously aren't the same people that make multimillion dollar investments in Symmetrix. Today it starts to make sense as EMC announced that MozyEnterprise will run on its storage-as-a-service platform EMC Fortres

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Can You Restore A 6-Year-Old Backup?

Some things, like sneezes, just seem to come in threes. Last week I got the third call in the past year asking for help restoring an oddball tape. In each case, a midsize company tried to satisfy its data-retention policy by putting end-of-month backup tapes on the shelf just in case the data on them would be needed in the future. Then when that time came, each was missing a tape drive or application to read them.

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It's Hard To Beat Free - Open-E Gives Away NAS/iSCSI

From now till Jan. 31, Germany's Open-E is giving away its Data Storage Solution Lite as a free download. After you've downloaded it and installed it on a USB memory key you have a bootable drive that turns any PC or server you run from it into a NAS appliance with iSCSI and Fibre Channel target functionality. Not just any iSCSI target -- DSS-Lite even supports copy on write snapshots and replication.

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Easy Backup For The Masses: Time Machine Comes Close

Well, it's been years since my whole family switched from Windows to Macintosh, giving up free tech support from yours truly as I insisted that "I don't no nothin' about birthin' no Macs" when they called. When the time to buy a new laptop came, I bought a MacBook Pro and immediately set up Boot Camp and VMware Fusion so I could still run my Windows apps. With OS X Leopard, Apple's gotten much of the user backup problem right. Plug a USB or Firewire hard drive into your Mac and, with just a few

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IBM Buys Arsenal Digital - Everyone Gets In The Act

Like every other professional geek, I get more than my share of friends, family, and friends of friends asking for technical advice and support. At the top of my list of recommendations is that the SOHO crowd, which for my money includes anyone that doesn't have an IT department, should get an account with an on-line backup service. Apparently enough people have been taking my advice for the big boys of the storage business to take notice. Iron Mountain now owns Connected Corp. and LiveVault, S

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