Rubrik -  - Chris Wahl

Chris Wahl

Rubrik Tech Evangelist. Published author, tech writer, double VCDX, PowerShell coder, and Datanauts Show host.

34 articles

Rubrik -  - Superior Architecture for a Cloud-Native World

General Tech

Superior Architecture for a Cloud-Native World

If there’s anything that years of consulting with enterprise clients has taught me, it’s that the world of technology continues to accelerate through iteration after iteration of new architectures, models, and solutions at a pace that is difficult to grasp. We previously lived in a world where all applications resided on bare metal, and waterfall projects took years to release. Now, the rules of small steps and cloud-first are percolating throughout the minds of cloud architects, driving innovation. As Rubrik’s Chief Technologist, I’ve applied a lens to my experiences as an architect to really scratch the surface on this whole cloud data management ideal in an exploratory series of blog posts. In a nutshell, being cloud native, entirely API-driven, infinitely scalable, having instant data access, and, most importantly, being software fueled are the ingredients necessary for moving the needle in the stagnant world of data protection. The Road Traveled Thus Far Two years later, one only has to look so far as incumbent solutions using yet another coat of paint to hide long-tailed technology debts to see the short, dismal future ahead when compared to newer ways of thinking. By wiping the technology slate clean in an effort to make backup…
Rubrik -  - Combating the Evolving Landscape of Ransomware

General Tech

Combating the Evolving Landscape of Ransomware

About one year ago today, we pointed out an emerging security crisis in the healthcare industry. Cyber threats targeting hospital data were becoming a regular event, with some computer systems held captive for a reputedly multi-million dollar ransom. Beyond the Bitcoin cost, ransomware puts patient care at risk since many organizations must stop operations for over a week. More recently, the worldwide spread of a virus known as “WannaCry” has been decimating operations at UK healthcare provider National Health Service (NHS) in addition to telecom, logistics, and car manufacturers. In total, it has caused havoc to over 230,000 computers in 150 countries. This attack has been aggressively accelerating while CIOs struggle to find a realistic solution. The root cause comes down to the usual suspects: a combination of phishing emails and poorly patched security vulnerabilities. This particular vulnerability was so caustic that Microsoft released an update to several of their deprecated operating systems such as Windows XP and Server 2003. Additionally, users need to stop using older protocols like SMB 1.0 because they create a multitude of vulnerabilities that allow attackers to commandeer a system. It’s on the vendor and partner communities to come up with innovative and effective methods…
Rubrik -  - What It Means to Be a VMware vExpert


What It Means to Be a VMware vExpert

Being a technical professional often results in no one knowing about the work being done–if things go according to plan. Our focus is on being invisible. We set up complicated servers, hook them all together, and offer up resources for virtual machines and data repositories. And in the end, an application is given a home, where visibility of the world is often abstracted from view. I think this is one reason why engineers like myself like to write about current infrastructure. From bugs to beautiful cabling jobs, we find beauty in our operational expertise. And few programs reward the blogs, podcasts, presentations, and overall evangelism of passionate virtualization professionals the way VMware’s vExpert award does. This is an acknowledgement from VMware given to over 1,200 people who have demonstrated the ability to pass along their knowledge to the community. It’s not easy to come home from a long day of work and fire up your laptop to engage in even more work-centric focus. The amount of contributions and the willingness to discuss various areas of expertise speak highly of these technical professionals and their dedication to performant infrastructure for their business. And while there are a few rewards for becoming a vExpert,…
Rubrik -  - Using Automation to Validate Applications and Services in Rubrik Backups


Using Automation to Validate Applications and Services in Rubrik Backups

The ability to restore files, folders, applications, and entire servers is the ultimate goal of data protection. With that in mind, there are a lot of checks in place to validate that all source data has been correctly stored within the Rubrik Cloud Data Management (CDM) fabric. This includes CRCs to ward against corruption, over-the-wire encryption to prevent tampering, and the use of erasure coding to opportunistically place data across hardware components to avoid single points of failure. In addition, it’s a good idea to validate that a backup can be restored. The best method is to perform a restore of the data to ensure that whatever is required – be it files, folders, applications, or entire servers – can be presented back to the users. Traditionally, this has been clunky. Solutions that offer such workflows are often quite slow to complete and limited in scope. Plus, they operate in a closed-source orchestration engine that is tightly coupled to the solution itself. Wouldn’t it be great if you could perform backup validation using your existing configuration management engines instead? With Rubrik, validating is easy. Because the entire CDM fabric is designed to operate at scale across any on-premises or cloud…
Rubrik -  - Exploring Cloud Data Management at Tech Field Day 12


Exploring Cloud Data Management at Tech Field Day 12

It’s not often that I get to present to a room full of amazingly talented colleagues gathered from all around the world. But when I do, it’s typically during one of Gestalt IT’s Field Day presentations. Recently, the Rubrik team sat down in front of a delegation from Tech Field Day 12 to get nerdy and deep dive into various components within the Rubrik Cloud Data Management stack. The goal was to dissect the simplicity that is baked into our enterprise-grade software offering and showcase how it works. If you missed the event, no worries! I’m going to walk you through the topics we covered and share all of the video recordings. As a special bonus, you can view Rubrik’s past appearances at Tech Field Day 10 and Virtualization Field Day 5. I also made sure to include a special slide for our friend Eric Wright over at Turbonomic because of his Tweet: Dear every single tech marketing team: please stop using the phrase "game-changing". Seriously, just stop. — Eric Wright (@discoposse) November 15, 2016 Rubrik Introduction The first segment provided a level set for those who are new to Rubrik, but also discussed what’s new with the latest and…
Rubrik -  - Score Snazzy Swag at the vBrownBag End of Year Give Away Extravaganza


Score Snazzy Swag at the vBrownBag End of Year Give Away Extravaganza

One of the spectacular attributes of the virtualization community is the stellar folks who put forth time and energy to help others. A shining example of this is the vBrownBag folks. From hosting technical webinars with industry rockstars to recording presentations at major industry events, the people at vBrownBag provide an excellent resource for technical professionals looking to learn from one another. I remember when I first started tuning into the VMware Certified Professional (VCP) series many years ago and was amazed at how deep the presenter knowledge went. Each year during the holidays, vBrownBag asks vendors throughout the ecosystem to pitch in a few presents for community members to win by signing up for a giveaway contest. Last year, we at Rubrik posted details on how to win one of five copies of the Networking for VMware Administrators book (profits going to Alzheimer’s Association) along with Millennium Falcon LEGO sets. I think it was a fun set of swag for adults and kids to enjoy – or an adult who is a kid at heart. This year, we’re once again contributing to the vBrownBag End of Year Give Away Extravaganza with some snazzy new items! You have until Tuesday, 20th…
Rubrik -  - Announcing Sponsorship of VMunderground at the 2016 VMworld US


Announcing Sponsorship of VMunderground at the 2016 VMworld US

It’s no secret that one of the most valuable things about the VMworld conference is the ability to network with your peers. With so many other folks around who are tackling challenges in the data center, the ability to hear their stories and pick their brain has a high value. Plus, some great friendships can be forged – some of my favorite people are those I met at a previous VMworld! One hallmark of the show is the VMunderground event. It’s a gathering of folks before the chaos begins – a chance to meet and mingle before we are all run ragged with announcements, sessions, keynotes, and other technical delights. I first attended this event when it was held at VMworld 2011 in Las Vegas at the Nine Fine Irishmen. And guess what – it’s back at the same venue! The other snazzy thing about VMunderground? Rubrik is a sponsor! We’re happy to support such a great, community-focused event and have a great amount of appreciation put forth by the team that runs such a high profile and excellently executed event each year. So, make sure to grab a ticket (and if you don’t have one, we’ll have a few…
Rubrik -  - Pump up the Excitement – VMworld Approaches!


Pump up the Excitement – VMworld Approaches!

Has it really been a year already? Apparently so, because another gauntlet of VMworld conferences approach and is bristling with energy and excitement. The Rubrik team and I will once again be embarking on an adventure to tour the Las Vegas and Barcelona events, spreading some serious amounts of knowledge, heavy-hitting swag, and a plethora of other surprises. This year, with thanks to our swelling customer base and buzz around making data protection “not suck,” we’ve set the bar to ludicrous speed with a Platinum presence and all the trimmings that goes along with that. I’m stoked! Earlier, I blogged on Wahl Network with an outline of sessions in which I’m excited to present with the likes of Duncan Epping, Kyle Ruddy, Chris Gurley, and Eric Shanks. If you’re interested in learning more about Rubrik CDM, data center automation, PowerShell and PowerCLI scripting, vRealize Automation blueprints, or vRealize Orchestrator workflows – and you’ll be at either of the VMworld events – you’re in for a treat! Stay tuned for even more epic details as we get closer to the VMware event of the year! 🙂
Rubrik -  - New White Paper – Rubrik and VMware Virtual SAN


New White Paper – Rubrik and VMware Virtual SAN

One common thread among all application requirements is the need for reliable, performant storage. Today, that comes in a variety of different shapes and sizes – from legacy, dual-controller arrays to software defined storage using distributed, scale-out architectures. All of the choice can be a tad daunting at times, especially when you consider the criticality of workloads that will be writing and reading their data. At Rubrik, we see a vast number of different storage solutions in production for our customer workloads. One of the first questions that crop up is around compatibility – can we provide data protection services for their VMware virtual machines? The simple answer is: sure! As I’ve rambled on about before, abstraction by way of vSphere APIs for Data Protection (VADP) allows our Converged Data Management fabric to largely ignore the underlying storage technology being used to provide data services to an application. While not all of them are fashioned in the same way, specific nuances are handled by the hypervisor directly. But it’s one thing to say that two technologies work together and quite another thing entirely to prove it out. My many years as an engineer and architect have taught me to “trust,…

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