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Enabling Centralized Configuration, Deployment and Monitoring of Continuous Data Protection of the Mobile Workforce.

Enabling Centralized Configuration, Deployment and Monitoring of Continuous Data Protection of the Mobile Workforce.

Data maintained and edited on laptops represent one of the largest data repositories for companies today, yet are the least protected digital asset. In fact, industry trends show that up to 60% of corporate information is at risk. This trend will continue to grow as laptops become more prevalent as desktop replacements.
While traditional backup solutions have focused on the server infrastructure within IT environments, data stored outside of these servers have been neglected – and thus are at risk. As workforce mobility increases, what are your plans to meet this growing challenge?

 


Challenges

How do you handle the different connectivity states of a laptop user (i.e. “on net” when in the corporate office, “off net but connected remotely” when at home or in a hotel, and “temporarily disconnected” when working while on a flight)?

How do you centrally configure, deploy and monitor a back-up solution in real time for a system that is constantly mobile?

How do you ensure back-ups occur to the central corporate storage infrastructure without creating complex processes that require end-user actions? 

How do you ensure efficient and secure data transfer from anywhere in the world?


Did you know PeerSync can do this?

The PeerSync Laptop Backup Package for the Enterprise Mobile Workforce addresses each of these challenges and enables centralized configuration, deployment and monitoring of continuous data protection for laptops.

While there are many solutions and methodologies trying to address this need today, a comprehensive review of requirements should be made to ensure that any product chosen meets all the complex challenges presented from a mobile workforce.

With this in mind, the PeerSync Laptop Backup Package was created to include the following functionality:

  • Centralized backup configuration and deployment
  • Centralized monitoring console
  • Backup auto-start with intelligent “connection” check (i.e. no end-user action required)
  • Real-time event detection and back-up when connected
  • Multiple Source / Target path configurations allowed
  • Enterprise grade encryption for data transfer
  • Byte-level replication
  • Bandwidth throttling
  • Open / locked file processing (e.g. Outlook .pst files)
  • UNC Path, TCP/IP and FTP Support
  • Transfer file ACLs
  • Inadvertent file deletion protection
  • Revision control
  • Administrative and Email reporting
  • Log files by job and by laptop
  • Blackout schedule options

Laptop Backup – Learn More …

MS DFS – Leveraging the Benefits and Filling the Gaps

  Here is an interesting White Paper that Peer Software has Co-Published with TechTarget.This e-guide covers the following: 

  • Why use Microsoft DFS
  • Problems with FRS – The advantage of DFS R2
  • DFS R2 improvements – Namespaces and replication
  • The DFS R2 limitations: No file locking
  • Tools that add file locking to Microsoft DFS

Microsoft DFS: Leveraging the Benefits and Filling the Gaps

Please let us know what you think and if there are any questions that may be left unanswered after reading this document. We look forward to hearing from you! :)

How do you optimize DFS such that version conflict is limited among multiple collaborative locations?

DFS (Distributed File System) was introduced in Windows 2000 to manage shared resources across a network and to more easily locate and access them. However, its capabilities were limited, particularly in facilitating high availability across distributed environments; generally, users found it cumbersome to replicate shared resources over slow links. DFS in Windows Server 2003 offered only modest improvements.

The new DFS R2 with DFS Namespaces addresses a number of critical shortcomings found in previous versions. It now offers byte-level replication, deletion management and email reporting – making it a more robust, reliable and more “network-friendly” replication tool. But it is still incomplete and inadequate for many of today’s more “collaborative” environments where data needs to be shared in real-time, i.e., among branch offices and project teams operating in multiple locations.

DFS replication works by way of a “pull” process. As such, it is not real time. The narrowest scheduling window is every 15 minutes, which exposes “live” documents to version conflict. Between the time a document is closed and replicated from point A, a colleague working from point B can make changes to a previous version – 15 minutes can be an eternity when even just two people are collaborating on a project, often against a strict deadline – problems escalate when, as is often the case, project teams are made up of several people operating from several locations.

During the initial replication of DFS Replication, you must designate a primary master server. All files on this primary server are deemed to be authoritative; during initial replication, the primary member’s files will always win the conflict resolution that occurs when the receiving members have files that are older or newer compared to the same files on the primary member.

Using DFS replication on a scheduled basis narrows the window for version conflict, but doesn’t eliminate it.


The surest and simplest way of eliminating version conflicts when using DFS is to add a true file locking solution – one that offers, at a minimum, real-time detection of file use and immediate remote locking. Such as Peerlock. This assures that when a file is open at location A, all other versions – say local copies at various branch offices – are locked down, preventing anyone from opening and revising it. When the file closes, the file lock is immediately released, though there’s one important caveat to bear in mind: using DFS, it takes a minimum of 15 minutes for the released file to be replicated, during which time version conflicts can — and do — occur.

Find out more on how to add File Locking to your DFS

Global Full Mesh File Mirroring Through TCP

The pressures of globalization have presented organizations with a fundamental challenge: how do you establish local “footprints” while maintaining central control – and oversight of everything from standard business transactions and practices to underlying IT processes.

Circumstances on the ground are ever-changing; it’s not just the pace of business that has quickened, synapses have too, as the window for critical business decisions  has dramatically narrowed.  Whereas all decisions were once routed through HQ, they are now made – and executed – at the regional or local level.   To the extent that in today’s world all business is data-driven, organizations are competitive to the degree their geographically distributed workforce is able to access, push, protect and collaborate on data. 

Obstacles encountered in a Mesh Topology

Implementing such a framework can be – and usually is – complex, costly, time-consuming, requires significant administrative overhead, and presents a host of technical challenges, from keeping bandwidth requirements to an acceptable minimum to assuring that data is readily available and efficiently shared.

Why use the PEER Solution

Enter PeerSync 7.4, the new version of Peer Software’s flagship file synchronization and replication solution, which enables IT admins to create a virtual – and instantaneous – mesh network, across which users at remote locations can easily, reliably and safely replicate and share data. Mesh networking is a way to route data, voice and instructions between nodes.

In a  mesh topology, each node—workstation or other device—is connected directly to each of the others, offering a high degree of reliability and redundancy. In the past, connecting remote offices typically required separate VPNs (virtual private networks), involving significant investments in hardware and software installation, and considerable managerial oversight. Scaling to 50 or a 100 offices and the associated costs  – let alone the administrative headaches – grow exponentially.

Relative to VPNs, implementing a full mesh network is also a major, resource-intensive undertaking; but using PeerSync 7.4, any remote office with an Internet connection can become part of a virtual mesh network almost instantaneously, without requiring additional hardware expenditures.  The new version of PeerSync supports real-time or scheduled bi-directional replication using the TCP replication mode. To achieve real-time bi-directional replication across TCP, PeerSync and PSListener is installed on both the Source and the Target machines.  Additionally, it features improved Enhanced Bi-directional capabilities so that relaying can occur once a file has been added/updated to the target. PeerSync also offers encryption over TCP. 

PeerSync also offers an unmatched level of  “granularity and control” in selecting specific replication sources and targets, and in managing bandwidth usage. Each node in a virtual mesh can be connected differently – one may have T1, another may have cable or DSL. Being able to control bandwidth usage means you can replicate data and maintain enough bandwidth to support, say, a  VOIP system that shares an integrated T1. Moreover, using PeerSync, you can prioritize replication by setting cycles to longer or shorter periods. Additionally, PeerSync provides true byte level replication,  another bandwidth-friendly feature in that it enables you to only transfer changed data in a file when synchronizing, instead of having to change or replace the entire file.

Maintaining central control while ceding necessary operational latitude and decision-making authority to remote locations would seem to be a complete contradiction. But as we’ve outlined – and as many readers may well know from personal experience – it’s a balance businesses must strike in order to have the agility to compete in today’s fluid, global business environment. Being able to leverage the benefits of mesh networking (let alone “instantaneously” deployed mesh networking) , i.e., its flexibility, reliability and redundancy, in implementing a seamless, secure, efficient data communication and exchange framework – one that’s easy to manage both centrally and at each remote connection point…should be a highly attractive proposition to any organization positioning itself to succeed on a global scale.      

We encourage you to download a free trial of our PeerSync Server v7.4 solution today.

Peer Software Announces PeerSync 7.4, Providing Expanded Functionality and Improved Performance for Enterprise-Level Synchronization and Backup

PeerSync 7.4 Offers Tighter Integration With PeerLock and Enhanced Scanning to More Efficiently Handle Large Volumes of Data and Complex Directory Structures. 

Peer Software on January 31st released PeerSync v7.4. This version offers numerous new features and performance enhancements, most notably tighter integration with PeerLock, providing more flexibility and control over file locking and releasing within PeerSync, and the ability to more efficiently handle large amounts of data and complex directories.

 The new features and enhancements make PeerSync 7.4 a true enterprise-grade file management solution.

“Managing data in enterprise environments demands a continual balancing of functionality/power and performance, ” said Paul Marsala, CEO of Peer Software. “Often, one comes at the expense of the other. The new version of PeerSync was developed to offer a true enterprise-grade file management tool that delivers uncompromised functionality and performance—IT admins now have the ability to efficiently manage larger volumes of data, provide users with a transparent, reliable collaborative framework by way of PeerLock, and maintain complete data availability without overburdening network resources.” 

Key PeerSync v7.4 Features:

  • Tighter PeerLock Integration: the ability to configure, manage, and monitor PeerLock from the Profiler.
  • Enhanced Scanning (New Server Optional Feature): the ability to dynamically build multiple sub Jobs from each Job in a Profile for parallel processing of folder scans, shortening the time of completion for scanning. This feature has been developed to work in conjunction with our Multi-Threading feature to further optimize performance and minimize file transfer time.
  • Enhanced Event Processing: the ability to parallel process real-time, retry and any other non-scan events, optimizing performance and minimizing processing time.
  • Bi-directional through TCP: added functionality to support bi-directional synchronization with source and/or target being a TCP connected folder.
  • Improved Interface: added four main sections to the Profiler: PeerSync, PeerLock, Run/View, and Service/Startup.
  • Managed Files – Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) (New Optional Feature): new screen now allows for the option of using either of the following technologies to manage open/locked files: Embedded Open File Manager (EOFM) and Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS).
  • Exceptions – Include Attributes: Ability to include a broad range of attributes, including Normal, Archive, System, Hidden, Read Only, Temporary, Offline, Encrypted, Compressed, Not Indexed.
  • Exceptions – Exclude Attributes: includes Normal, Archive, System, Hidden, Read Only, Temporary, Offline, Encrypted, Compressed, and Not Indexed.
  • Reporting – ACLs: ability to log the transfer of ACLs during scanning (ACL’s updates only) and after successful synchronization of a file.

 

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