Cloud Backup for IBM i

BRMS (Backup Recovery Media Services) is IBM’s strategic product for managing and backing up your IBM i servers. It is the most widely-used product for IBM i backups, system restore/recovery activities and managing your backup media. Traditionally, this product is used for tape-based backup and recovery. Now, BRMS can be used to transfer backup data to and from the cloud. 

From some early limitations, cloud integration with BRMS has developed, both in terms of performance and functionality. Using the cloud as a target backup point, IBM i customers now have a backup solution comparable to those running Windows and Linux. A recent enhancement is the support of encryption and compression of transferred data, both important considerations when it comes to the transportation of sensitive data over the internet and the potential penalties as a result of data disclosure.

 Another recent enhancement is the support for BRMS’s dynamic archive and retrieval function to integrate from the Cloud. This may be a good option for infrequently used data that is normally archived off to tape. Using this integration, data can be archived to the cloud and automatically retrieved if required at a later date.

IBM BRMS

So what is required?

The following software is required: IBM i 7.1 of the operating system, BRMS software, and an additional Licensed Program product called IBM Cloud Solutions for i (product 5733-ICC).

Not only can standard library-based backups be performed to the cloud, in the same you currently back them up to tape, but there is also support for ‘bare-metal’ recovery from a full system backup using BRMS. Additionally, data can be restored from the cloud to a completely different system to that which backed it up. 

Cloud integration within BRMS utilises the existing virtual tape and image catalog technologies within the IBM i Operating System. Backups are contained on virtual media and then sent to the configured cloud provider. Normally the local images are removed from the system once they have successfully transferred to the Cloud. However, if restore speed is a priority, you can choose to also keep the virtual tape media present on disk locally for a period of time. The reason for doing this is that when data is required to be restored, the virtual media image containing the data must be transferred back from the Cloud to the IBM i system in its entirety. 

Currently support cloud interfaces are Amazon AWS S3, IBM Cloud (formerly called IBM Bluemix, Cleversafe, and IBM Softlayer (S3 Protocol) , IBM Cloud Object Storage (ICOS)  In addition, another IBM i partition or server can be used as a cloud service provider using the FTP protocol. 

If you would like to move away from traditional tape backup to cloud based backup with other platforms contact us today for a proof of concept.

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