Huawei pitches first Disaster Recovery service for OpenStack

Profile picture for user mbanks By Martin Banks September 24, 2015
Summary:
At the Huawei Cloud Congress, the company launched what it claims is the first OpenStack-based cloud Disaster Recovery service. Martin Banks casts a quizzical eye over the claims.

disaster recovery
Disaster avoided?

With all the effort being put behind the development and roll out of services based on OpenStack as the underlying platform it comes as a bit of a surprise to learn that, so far as Huawei is concerned at least, that there is no current source of a Disaster Recovery (DR) service that runs on it.

The company is claiming that its own offering, formally launched at the Cloud Congress in Shanghai, is the first OpenStack-based Cloud DR system so far available.

Riding on the back of its own Solutions-as-a-Service (SOLaaS) approach launched last week, which rolled in more business systems-focused partners such as Microsoft and SAP, having DR as part of the available services users can choose from makes a good deal of sense.

The objective is to offer it not only to major enterprise customers, where there is generally a good understanding of the need for DR, but also to large-sized telcos and Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) for them to sell on as a service offering to their own customers.

Huawei's existing Disaster Recovery Data Center Solution (Active-Active Mode), that was released in September last year, lies at the heart of the new service.

This is then coupled with the ManageOne cloud management platform, disaster recovery management software BCManager, the OceanStor DJ storage service platform, OpenStack interface extensions, the HyperMetro active-active storage feature and virtual machine backup software eBackup.

Delivering DR to CSP tenants comes through an operation management platform provided by either by Huawei or a third party. CSP service departments or the tenants themselves, if they have the skills, can configure and self-serve a disaster recovery service level agreement (SLA) such as active-active, active-standby, and data backup.

This can mean that DR can be set up for an SMB client in a matter of minutes, saving them the need to shop around trying to source a product or service on their own.

It also means that the CSP service departments can use the same DR technology to provide business assurance for their own operations. That, of course, includes Huawei's own installations, which now total 660 data centers around the world, of which 255 are cloud data centers.

My take

Handled correctly, this could provide a good line of business for both the telcos and Huawei, as many of those customers will fall between the SMB brackets, where the understanding of DR issues can be patchy and where the notion of  'taking the gamble' that a disaster will not happen to them is still prevalent.

Having it provided as an integral part of a package of services used to run the guts of an SMB business, and provide reasonable assurance that it will continue to operate, might just prove to be a value to their business they will see and understand.

The company sees its DR service offering users a more cost effective and simpler approach to cloud DR, not least because it is based upon the increasingly widespread, and open sourced, OpenStack platform.

There is an expanding number of OpenStack-based data centers now coming on-stream around the world, both in enterprises and CSPs, so the chances for a DR system built for that market can expect to be good.