"Strawberry Fields Forever" with Rubrik
Nathan Bach, Senior Systems Engineer, and Jose Ambrosio, Systems Engineer, explain how Rubrik helped Driscoll’s overcome recovery challenges stemming from array-based snapshots.
Tell me about yourself and role. How did you get here?
Nate: Prior to Driscoll’s, I was a solution architect at a tech reseller helping SMB to enterprise customers implement solutions from VMware and HP. Driscoll’s was actually one of my customers. Driscoll’s gave me an opportunity to come in and start implementing virtualization. Today, we’re 95% virtualized.
Jose: I started out picking blackberries in the field as a teen, and was invited to work for Driscoll’s. I interned in different functions—quality, research, IT. I went back to school with the purpose of coming back to Driscoll’s as a systems administrator.
Why were you investigating new backup solutions?
Nate: Array-based snapshots was our backup strategy. Our primary storage vendor’s vision was to buy more arrays, mirror and replicate to more storage arrays. Doing so became expensive since backups quickly consumed our production capacity, and this limited our retention policies. We ran the risk of having our backups located in the same site as our primary storage. Managing this was incredibly difficult given the lack of file granularity. Locating a specific file meant you had to mount an entire set of backup data before embarking on an Easter egg hunt.
Nate: We’ve been looking for a solution that provided physically different disks for our backups, ease of use with VMware, great performance and deduplication capabilities, and ability to take app-aware snapshots without agents. Rubrik checked the box for all these.
How are you using Rubrik?
Jose: We’re using Rubrik to protect a file server that operates in our cooler facility, which powers the heart of Driscoll’s supply chain. Our cooler facility serves as the central area in which berries harvested from growers are received and then packed and distributed to retail channels like Safeway and Whole Food’s. Before Rubrik, we were using our legacy backup software and storage solutions to protect this file server, but our file-level backups were failing. We dedicated resources to troubleshoot our backup infrastructure for a week to no avail.
Rubrik allowed us to quickly protect the file server and deliver VM and file-level recovery. It’s important that we can successfully backup the VMs in our cooler facility—these applications are what underpin our supply chain. If we don’t, we can’t receive and ship berries. With Rubrik, we can continue to deliver the finest berries to delight our customers.
What benefits have you seen after migrating from an array-based snapshot approach?
Nate: With our legacy architecture, it would take us 30 minutes to an hour or more to do a file-level restore. If we’re restoring from our primary storage, we’ll need to find the location in which the file was vaulted, comb through the dates on that system, mount the backup, check to see if it was what we were looking for, and repeat if we couldn’t find. Now, I can instantly search and recover at a file-level easily. By migrating to a separate backup infrastructure, we can opt for longer retention periods without sacrificing primary storage capacity. The system’s powerful scale-out deduplication allows us to drive additional efficiencies in capacity.
Any future plans for Rubrik?
Nate: We love how Rubrik allows us to live mount our data instantly on the system. Our team is now figuring out how to leverage this in our test/dev process.
The ability to archive data to the public cloud has also been really interesting. Cloud-based solutions have gotten more affordable over time and Driscoll’s is already using the cloud for file sharing and desktop backups. We’re investigating data archival to the cloud as a way to lower our investment in upfront hard capacity and pay as we go.
Download the case study: Driscoll’s Protects the Finest Berries with Rubrik.
Watch the video: Driscoll’s Protects the Finest Berries with Rubrik.