Mainframe Storage

Backup in the cloud, restore anywhere

By RAUL RAUDRY DIAZ DE LEON posted Tue November 24, 2020 08:17 PM


Business continuity is the capability to withstand planed and unplanned outages and to operate core services normally and without interruption in accordance with predefined service-level agreements. To achieve a given level of business continuity, a collection of services, software, hardware, and procedures must be selected, documented, implemented, and practiced regularly.

How is Business Continuity made up ?

In general,
Business Continuity is made up by 4 important components:

  • High Availability provides fully automated failover to a backup system so business operations can continue working without disruption. 
  • Data Protection provides point-in-time copies of production data that can later be used for identification, repair or replacement of production data that has been compromised.
  • Disaster Recovery provides processes and tools to restore a production environment from valid point in time copies of the data if an unforeseen disruptive event occurs.
  • Cyber Resiliency integrates with Data Protection and Disaster Recovery and provides additional security to protect point in time copies of data from being modified or deleted due to user errors, malicious destruction or cyber-attacks.

Business Continuity

To recover part or all of the information that has been compromised, the Disaster Recovery implementation uses the last valid backup created by Data Protection, but after a cyber-attack occurs, you don't want to discover that your sensitive copies are missing or corrupted, and that's where Cyber Resiliency comes in.

To provide the additional security required to protect data when a cyber incident occurs, IBM DS8000 offers the powerful functionality of IBM Safeguarded Copy. This technology provides immutable points of data recovery that are hidden and protected from being modified or deleted. These immutable copies are a trusted and secure source of data that can be used for forensic analyses or surgical or catastrophic recoveries.

In order to extend cyber resilience even further, IBM DS8000 can now backup full data volumes to the cloud that can be restored in any other system and can be used to recover a production environment that has been compromised.  

How does it work?

To backup and restore data to and from de cloud, IBM DS8000 uses the DFSMSdss DUMP and RESTORE commands.  Before Release 9.1, DFSMSdss used to dump the entire contents of a volume to TAPE or DASD devices only. Now with Release 9.1, IBM DS8000 leverages the Transparent Cloud Tiering functionality to extend the target devices to include IBM TS7700 systems configured as an object store or other cloud solutions like IBM Cloud Object Storage, IBM Cloud or Amazon S3 compatible object storage.  

Now, the DUMP and RESTORE commands have new keywords CLOUD, CLOUDCREDENTIALS, CONTAINER, and OBJECTPREFIX to support the placement of a DFSMSdss backup in cloud storage.

It is important to mention that the RESTORE command does not necessarily have to be executed on the same DS8000 system where the copy was created, it can be executed on any remote system as long as it has access to the cloud repository where the copy of the volume exists.

Cloud-based recovery

DFSMSdss Full Volume Dump with Transparent Cloud Tiering is supported on both DS8880 and DS8900F with microcode upgrades

  • DS8880 Release 8.5 SP6
  • DS8900F Release 9.1

The use of unique functions only found in the DS8000 such as Safeguarded Copy, Transparent Cloud Tiering, 100% data encryption and now full volume backups in the cloud, provide end-to-end solutions that can efficiently protect data and respond to adverse cyber events. By delivering multi-layered security and high resilient functionality, IBM DS8000 can maximize the data protection capabilities to help organizations significantly reduce the risk of business disruption and financial losses due to user errors, malicious destruction or ransomware attacks.

Click here, if you want to know more about using Cloud storage functions on DFSMS.