NetApp SnapManager 7.0 for Exchange – Supporting New Exchange Server 2013

By Niyaz Mohamed, Microsoft Solutions & Integration Group, NetApp

 

Many organizations have come to rely on Microsoft Exchange Server to facilitate critical business e-mail communication processes on a 24x7 basis. System failures may result in unacceptable operational and financial losses. Because of the increasing importance of Microsoft Exchange Server for any business, Exchange data protection, disaster recovery and high availability are of increasing concern. As the importance of Exchange within the organization increases, companies expect quick recovery times with little or no data loss. With Exchange databases growing rapidly in size every day, it is increasingly difficult to complete time-consuming backup operations in a reasonable amount of time. When an outage occurs, it can take days to restore service from slower media such as tape, even assuming that all of the backup tapes are available and error free. NetApp offers a comprehensive suite of hardware and software that enables an organization to keep pace with the increasing data availability demands of an ever-expanding Exchange environment, as well as scale to accommodate future needs while reducing cost and complexity.

 

We are happy to announce NetApp SnapManager 7.0 for Microsoft Exchange software with support for Microsoft Exchange Server 2013. SnapManager for Exchange 7.0 provides an integrated data management solution for Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 that enhances the availability, scalability and reliability of Exchange databases. SnapManager for Exchange provides rapid online backup and restoration of databases, along with local or remote backup set mirroring for disaster recovery. SnapManager for Exchange uses online Snapshot technologies that are part of NetApp’s storage OS, clustered Data ONTAP. It integrates with Exchange backup and restores APIs and the Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS). SnapManager for Exchange uses SnapMirror to support disaster recovery.

 

SnapManager for Exchange 7.0 provides the following data management capabilities:

  • Migrating Exchange databases and transaction logs to NetApp LUNs
  • Backing up Exchange databases and transaction logs from NetApp LUNs
  • Verifying Exchange databases and transaction logs in backup sets
  • Managing & archiving backup sets
  • Restoring Exchange databases and transaction logs from previously created backup sets


SnapManager for Exchange 7.0 highlights include:

  • Support for Exchange 2013
  • Support for Clustered ONTAP 8.2
  • Gapless Database Availability Group (DAG) backup
  • Backup retention management enhancements
  • Rapid reseed using the Netapp Snapshots

 

SME 7.0 Features

 

Support for Exchange 2013
SME 7.0 provides support for the newly released Microsoft Exchange Server 2013. Exchange Server 2013 enhanced many existing features that help customers achieve flexibility in their deployment scenarios and provide built-in high-availability features. SME 7.0 is tightly integrated with these new features, providing a complementary feature set for Exchange 2013.


Support for clustered Data ONTAP 8.2
NetApp enables its customers to move to a fully virtualized compute and storage platform to provide the best consolidation platform with the highest level of service level agreements (SLAs) and operational flexibility and efficiency for the Exchange Server environments. Benefits include the following:

  • Elimination of business disruptions due to infrastructure upgrades and maintenance
  • Reduction of capital expense by consolidation of storage and database copies
  • Meet demanding SLAs by moving Exchange workload non-disruptively across the physical storage layer
  • Seamless failover protection against component failures
  • Simplification of migration from NetApp Data ONTAP 8.0/8.1 operating in 7-Mode to Data ONTAP 8.1/8.2 operating in Cluster-Mode through the use of DAG replication or SnapManager for Exchange 7.0 Configuration Wizard.

 

Gapless Database Availability Group (DAG) backup feature

The gapless backup feature is designed to make sure that a Snapshot copy that is older than the most recent full backup, which truncates the transaction logs, can utilize up-to-the-minute restore (roll-forward recovery). The ability to perform Up-to-the-minute restore in recovery scenarios always complements to most of the companies restore requirements.

 

Backup retention management enhancements

The backup retention refers to the duration of time the backups would be retained. SnapManager provides backup management groups for designating various levels of backup retention.

 

Rapid reseed using the Netapp Snapshots

The standard Exchange reseed function can be slow with larger databases. SnapManager normally uses a more rapid method to reseed databases using Snapshot copy created for the databases using the Restore functionality or by using PowerShell scripts. Gapless backup or Node level backups would be used to accomplish this scenario.

 

Other available features

 

Copyless Transaction Log Archiving

SnapManager archives transaction log files using NTFS hard links, which enables conservation of disk space in storage systems and improves the system performance. During a backup operation, SnapManager archives transaction logs on the live file system to the SnapInfo directory. To optimize backup operations in which the database transaction logs and the SnapInfo directory are on the same NTFS volume, SnapManager archives transaction logs to the SnapInfo directory by creating NTFS hard links instead of performing a file copy operation.

 

This conserves the disk space of the storage system and improves system performance during the transaction log archival phase of the backup operation. When an SME backup operation completes, Exchange truncates its committed transaction log files. However, the actual files are not deleted. NTFS detects that other hard links still exist and the physical files are retained. The original NTFS hard links to the live transaction files are removed, and the links to the SnapInfo directory remain intact and available for access for SME restore operations.

 

Restore Operation

The ability to recover Exchange databases when necessary is a critical operation for an Exchange administrator. With SME Restore you can recover your Exchange databases and transaction logs from backups that it created, or from archive. There are two types of restores in SME: up-to-the-minute restore and point-in-time restore.

 

Summary

NetApp SnapManager 7.0 for Microsoft Exchange is an integral component of the NetApp data management solution for Microsoft Exchange Server environments. By reducing backup and restore times, minimizing Exchange outages, and consolidating Exchange storage, SME delivers a cost-effective solution for managing critical Exchange data.

 

For more information, please stop by the NetApp booth #1101 at Microsoft TechEd this week.

Comments

Seems great but is there any news about the release date of SnapManager for Exchange 7. Customers are waiting on it as they already running Exchange 2013

Tom, thank you for your question and interest. The beta of SnapManager 7.0 for Exchange Server will be available on 6/24 to a limited number of organizations. If you or others are interested in participating in this limited beta, please contact your local NetApp sales representative and they will be more than happy to assist you.

Best Regards,

Dennis Clark

Sr. Solutions Marketing Manager

NetApp

Hi,

Everyone keeps dodging the answer, but how about a ball park quarter?  I have recently installed a 2010/2013 co-existance but am not allowed to migrate to Exchange 2013 until this is released.

Hi Christian, look for SnapManager 7.0 for Exchange Server to be available this calendar year.

Thank you,

Dennis Clark

Sr. Solutions Marketing Manager

NetApp

dclarkjr @ netapp.com

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Hi,

Can we know the date, when the version 7.0 will be available for all the customers?

Regards

Richard

Hi,

I also waiting for the release date. I couldn't finde a roadmap or something else.

thx,

Tobi

Hi,

Any news regarding the release date?

Br,

Nils

SnapManager 7.0 for Exchange will be released on 19th Sept 2013.

Regards,

Niyaz Mohamed

Messaging Architect

Netapp

Is the release confirmed for today?

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If possible elaborate on the intergration with OnCommand Unified Manager, specifically Protection Capability. Is this supported?

REALLY??? WTF?

>Support for Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 only.
>Note: SnapManager 7.0 does not support any other versions of Microsoft Exchange Server.

Agreed...

Who has implemented Exchange 2013 yet ?

Was looking forward to upgrade to resolve log files retention issue.

the log files retention issue was resolved in a P release. (first in P1, but now there is a P2) ...

http://support.netapp.com/NOW/download/software/snapmanager_e2k/6.0.4P2/

I too am a little baffled by the support for only Exchange 2013. Sucks they didn't even go for support of 2010.

Hi

couple of questions

we purchased a new FAS2240 running ontap 8.2. with the snapmanager suite.

I understand that we can't use NFS datastores for the VM's that are running Exchange servers so we have to use LUN's (iSCSI) so does that mean-

The LUN which is presented to VMware Host as a VMFS datastore can be used or i will have to present the LUN straight to the Virtual machine ?

Looks like the Snap Drive needs to be installed on the exchange server

The SnapManager or exchange does it need to be installed on the exchange server(mailbox server). ?

thanks

Anand

Cant install program. When I run the post install script, it sees my filer, but it wont let me connect to it with my "root" login and password.

Any suggestions?' I need this isse resolved so I cna continue my install. Thanks.