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Next week Continuity Software will introduce the latest release of its disaster recovery (DR) and high availability (HA) management solution. RecoverGuard version 5.0 (v5.0) features a number of new capabilities and enhancements in the areas of service level agreement (SLA) management, cluster support, the graphical user interface (GUI), HA/DR risk detection, configuration management database (CMDB) systems integration, Microsoft Active Directory support and reporting capabilities. 

Founded in 2005 to tackle data loss and downtime, Tel Aviv-based Continuity sells primarily through the channel, and mainly to large organizations, says CTO Doron Pinhas. According to Gartner, the DR market is worth $40 billion annually.

Continuity focuses its technology on the live recovery and solving the configuration drift problems that can occur when you combine DR and HA, Pihas says.

"Constant changes on the production side must be reproduced on the backup side, and this tends to be done manually, and tends not to be tested." The result, he says, is that when testing is done, there is a 75 percent failure rate. Continuity focuses on less on traditional backup and recovery, and more on the live aspects of recovery, "the more active uses which should failover immediately."

The typical pattern in IT is that as technologies mature, the need for — and availability of — management tools grows. People understand they need to buy management tools but there’s nothing really out there for this segment, says Pinhas. "There are lots of point solutions out there but no holistic solution for disaster recovery and high availability."

RecoverGuard is an agent-less solution that automatically scans and detects HA/DR configurations and identifies HA/DR vulnerabilities before failure. Currently there are over 3,500 HA/DR risk signatures, primarily user-driven, and updated every two weeks, says Pinhas. Customers account for 60 percent of the knowledge, but Continuity also integrates information from storage, database and operating system vendors.

The key, he stresses, is finding the right information. For instance, HDS and Oracle published a 200-page document on how to handle a particular problem. "It has about 25 key points, but if you miss one or more, you can have a significant problem." So Continuity  adds those best practices to the database itself.

Another benefit of the company’s solution is system optimization. Pinhas says almost a quarter of the signatures are about alternative ways of configuring systems for better performance and efficiency. With RecoverGuard, it’s very simple to set up policies for different systems and business services to track problems and fixes, he says. "It contains all the data necessary to fix it."

The company stopped its direct sales two years ago, so the channel is Continuity’s primary sales focus, says Pinhas, and today, North America is its fastest growing market. The product is fairly easy to sell and install, he adds, and is relatively lucrative.

The new functionality and enhancements in v5.0 include:

–    SLA Management for quick and easy establishment of required levels of protection, policy definition and then violations/breaches/risks tracking and remedying;
–    Extended Cluster Support  for Microsoft Failover Cluster, IBM PowerHA, HP Serviceguard, Solaris Cluster, Linux clusters and HP PolyServe;
–    Streamlined GUI with more than 200 customer requested features and enhancements;
–    800 new HA/DR risk signatures have been added to the database;
–    Bi-directional integration with all major CMDB;
–    Full integration with Active Directory for unified user management; and,
–    Extended host configuration, database storage utilization, and NetApp filer replication reporting.