Category: RestoreManager

Smart Data Protection at a More Affordable Costs

While we all continue navigating the ever-changing world of data protection, we’re always searching for better data protection at more affordable costs, while still maintaining necessary security and compliances. At Catalogic, we do exactly that. We provide you with an array of data protection product options to help fit your environment’s needs. For example, our NetApp product options of Cryptospike and Restore Manager provide you with a more in-depth look at your environment from the data protection and search and restore analytics perspective.

Cryptospike is ransomware protection for NetApp, but it’s also so much more. Cryptospike provides you with real-time detection, prevention, and recovery capabilities for your NetApp file environments. By utilizing your existing native snapshots, Cryptospike uses a multi-pronged approach consisting of a Black list, a White list and a Pattern learner module to better protect your environment. It also detects immediate day-one threats, so that you know exactly where and on what user profile or device a potential attack took place, and without having to do a full rollback or restore.

With Cryptospike you only restore the infected file or files back to their last known good state within seconds. This cuts down on time and resources tremendously by being able to detect, prevent and recover from a ransomware attack within seconds to minutes, and it doesn’t hurt the bank either.
Another aspect of overall data security is data access transparency: understanding which users accessed what data, plus when and how often. Since CryptoSpike is monitoring all user file access, it is ideally suited to track and deliver this information. With CryptoSpike, you can easily examine user behavior down to the level of files and folders. Reports will show you user activity in terms of file opens, closes, deletes, writes and so on. This will provide you with definitive information that a volume, folder, file, etc. was accessed by a given user. CryptoSpike works together with the NetApp FPolicy server, which is required. The FPolicy server will enforce the blocking decisions made by CryptoSpike. For example, if ransomware is detected by the Learner module, the relevant user will be changed to having read-only access, which stops them from further spreading the ransomware. CryptoSpike lets you know which files have been affected, allowing you to do targeted recoveries, rather than having to roll-back an entire folder. Meanwhile, CryptoSpike provides a list of infected files, allowing you to perform targeted recovery from NetApp snapshots. Cryptospike is licensed out per controller-node with pricing tiered out by system size according to the NetApp model number. There are no capacity limitations in terms of total storage, number of files, or number of users, making Cryptospike licensing very easy to manage.


As important as ransomware protection is, so is having the ability to catalog, search and restore your files in a quick and easy fashion. Knowing what you have and being able to locate it in seconds when you need it, even if you have over billions of files, is huge. Catalogic has a solution for that as well, and this is where RestoreManager shines. RetoreManager is a scalable NetApp file catalog with an in-depth data analytics component. RestoreManager provides you with file-indexing, search and restore capabilities for your NetApp environment. With these capabilities, you’re able to utilize the multiple search filters to easily locate files, including name, type, file size, creation date, deletion date, and other search parameters.

As with Cryptospike, RestoreManager is very easy to use and highly scalable while giving you the option to restore your files to their original or alternate location. RestoreManager communicates to the systems via NetApp’s ONTAP SnapDiff protocol and supports all versions of the ONTAP operating system for NetApp primary storage systems. For NetApp SnapVault and SnapMirror targets, RestoreManager works with ONTAP and NetApp Cloud Backup (formerly AltaVault). RestoreManager uses the Elastic Search Database, an open-source solution that has excellent scalability, performance, load balancing and availability. Restore Manager is also licensed out per controller-node with pricing tiered according to the NetApp model number. Again, there are no capacity limitations in terms of users, total storage, or number of files.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us. We would be happy to answer any of your questions and provide you with more information.


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12/03/2020 0 Comments

Catalogic Software Strengthens Focus on Data Security from Multiple Angles

The time has finally come. You’ve poured your blood, sweat, and tears into your most recent content piece, and it’s ready to be packaged up and sent to the client to be pushed live. After a few final checks and only…

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10/28/2020 0 Comments

Enabling Effective Data Management in Your Organization

The time has finally come. You’ve poured your blood, sweat, and tears into your most recent content piece, and it’s ready to be packaged up and sent to the client to be pushed live. After a few final checks and only…

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08/28/2020 0 Comments

Identifying and Recovering Files Corrupted by Ransomware Using RestoreManager

The time has finally come. You’ve poured your blood, sweat, and tears into your most recent content piece, and it’s ready to be packaged up and sent to the client to be pushed live. After a few final checks and only…

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08/06/2020 0 Comments

Snapshots Are a Feature, Not a Solution

The time has finally come. You’ve poured your blood, sweat, and tears into your most recent content piece, and it’s ready to be packaged up and sent to the client to be pushed live. After a few final checks and only…

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12/02/2019 0 Comments

Our Thanks to NetApp Insight Attendees Who Helped Donate $2019 to the Three Square Food Bank

NetApp Insight 2019 was an exciting and information-packed event. We’d like to thank NetApp for being excellent hosts. And mostly, we’d like to thank those of you that participated in our No More Swag campaign. With your help, instead of giving away tradeshow swag, we’re donating $2,019 dollars to Three Square, a Southern Nevada food bank. We had 673 visitors (including attendees at our breakout) and at a promised $3 donation for each it just happened to match the calendar year!

Image: Some of the Catalogic team members at our booth at NetApp Insight 2019.

Some of the Catalogic team members at our booth at NetApp Insight 2019.

For each dollar donated, Three Square can provide three meals. So instead of taking home another squeeze ball to throw away, your support will provide 6,057 meals to needy people. That ought to feel better than just another squeeze ball!

Insight really is a great place to meet folks from across the NetApp eco-system: end-users, reseller partners and NetApp employees themselves. We met with many from each group and conversations ranged across a wide scope of topics.

  • How to combat ransomware on NetApp file storage
  • How to gather a full, meta-data index of NetApp files for easy search and restore
  • Saving lots of money by switching your NDMP backup solution to Catalogic DPX (and getting tiering-to-cloud in the bargain)
  • Easily migrating your OSSV backups to a solution that supports the latest ONTAP and operating system releases, and doesn’t change your backup architecture

We also had a great turnout for our breakout session, with about 100 people in the room. The session covered ransomware protection, file index and catalog as well as file data analytics. I guess we did a good job because we had a 4.76/5.00 rating for the session!  Some of the comments we received:

  • “Nice tools and would love to have them in my environment.”
  • “All relevant topics. Data analytics is lacking with native tools. Alternative to traditional Ndmp backup is needed. And file auditing is a requirement for my organization. Nice that all these are covered within this solution.”
  • “Good choice of topics, good delivery as well. I want a PoC.”

Speaking of a Proof of Concept, we’re happy to oblige anyone who wants to test out any of our NetApp solutions.  Just fill out our trial download form and we’ll get you software to try for 30 days. If you’d like to see a demo first, fill out the demo request.

That wraps up Insight 2019. Thanks again to those who helped us make a donation to the Three Square food bank, and we’ll see everyone next year!

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11/06/2019 0 Comments

Finding the Needle.txt in the NetApp Haystack

On a recent business trip, my Account Executive and I made a pitstop in the local NetApp office. Our purpose was to discuss our current product offerings and see how Catalogic Software’s products can integrate with and enhance NetApp’s stickiness in customer environments. Because as great as NetApp Storage is, there are always gaps that need to be filled. As we talked, one such gap became clear. NetApp is known for its snapshot capabilities. You can apply snapshot schedules, you can replicate to a SnapVault or SnapMirror, even push to an Altavault location. However, as you build out this architecture, it becomes exceedingly difficult to know what data lives where, and on what snapshots.

This issue usually presents itself when IT admins receive a simple request: “I lost one of my files, it must have been deleted accidently and I need it back.” Maybe the user accidently deleted the file, or overwrote a previous version by mistake, or maybe he/she just moved the file to the wrong sub-directory without realizing it. Sounds easy enough, but for IT Admins, this common request could lead to major headaches and hours of lost time, because finding the file is like searching for a needle in a haystack. If you are effectively utilizing NetApp’s snapshot capabilities, you know that you have multiple versions of that file in your snapshots, but there is no easy way to find that file. There is no central catalog that lets you search for and restore specific files. The Admin ends up spending hours manually searching through directories on Snapshots for that missing file. Or sometimes organizations simply deny the restore request because they don’t have the time to go looking.

As you can imagine, this problem is concerning to many admins. Maybe even concerning enough for them to begin to consider alternatives to NetApp that do a better job here. That is why, as we discussed this topic in the local NetApp office, the NetApp sales reps began to show their excitement when we brought up our RestoreManager product.

RestoreManager is a virtual appliance that communicates directly with your NetApp cluster(s), and using NetApp SnapDiff APIs lets you easily locate and recover files on NetApp storage copies. Using what we call a Crawler, RestoreManager collects the SnapDiff API information and with that data builds an online central catalog of your metadata for primary and/or secondary NetApp systems. This means that we also index your SnapMirror and SnapVault destination volumes. Then, because we have all of that information stored locally in an ElasticSearch database, you can search through snapshots using multiple filters and wildcards. When you find the file(s) or folder(s), you drive the restore right from within RestoreManager. The ElasticSearch database also allows RestoreManager to be highly scalable for large NetApp file environments.

Once you search for and identify the specific file that you need to restore, you simply select the file and click the “Restore File” button. This then gives the user the ability to restore the file from any snapshot that contains that file. Say for example you accidently overwrote a file and didn’t realize you did so. Perhaps several days go by and your Snapshot schedule has gone through a few cycles. With RestoreManager, you can restore the file using a snapshot that was taken before the inadvertent overwrite occurred.

The added benefit of the SnapDiff metadata collection is that all file and snapshot information is included in the crawl. This allows end-users the ability to apply filters for more targeted searches. Possible filters include:

  • By file name, parts of the name or file path, with wildcards being permitted
  • By data type or file ending: jpg, xls, doc, ppt, etc.
  • By deletion period
  • By creation period
  • By file size
  • Etc.

The basic search capability is great, but for large NetApp environments, these filters give the user the ability to narrow the focus to more easily find the specific file you are looking for. The extensive catalog also gives RestoreManager the ability to provide additional data analytics and reporting capabilities in the Kibana Dashboards module. Analytics and reporting will be covered in an upcoming post.

Using RestoreManager in conjunction with Catalogic Software’s DPX backup product allows for a complete file recovery solution. Because of its local, online catalog, RestoreManager is perfect for short term retention and operational recovery, including all the examples described earlier. But perhaps your organization would like to offload to tape or to the cloud for long-term retention. That data no longer lives on NetApp storage, and in turn cannot be restored using RestoreManager. That is where DPX comes in. Using scheduled and managed NDMP backups of your NetApp filer, DPX can push your data to tape or to the cloud, and then provide a searchable file index that features single file restore capabilities. This is particularly useful for data compliance or legal situations like an audit. See example below:

Using scheduled and managed NDMP backups of your NetApp filer, DPX can push your data to tape or to the cloud

You would be glad to know that licensing for RestoreManager is simple and affordable. It is priced per controller node and is tiered by NetApp system size. It does not matter how much data is stored, how many users you have, or the number of files. Licensing is subscription-based and is priced per month with a minimum 12-month purchase, with additional licensing available for any additional months on top of that first year.

If you are interested in learning more about RestoreManager or watch a pre-recorded product demonstration, visit our RestoreManager web page. Or even better, contact us for a one-on-one demo with one of our product experts. You can even download a trial copy and test it for yourself.

Stop spending hours manually searching through all of your snapshots just to find that single file that someone accidentally deleted! Instead, reach out to Catalogic Software and allow RestoreManager to search for that needle in a haystack for you.

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08/19/2019 0 Comments

Yeah, You Probably Should Do Something to Protect Your Organization from Ransomware

Another day, another ransomware attack. It was recently reported that the city council in Riviera Beach, Florida, “voted to pay nearly $600,000 to hackers who crippled the city’s computer systems with a ransomware attack.” This sets a new record for publicly revealed payments by a government organization. And it does seem that government organizations get hit a lot, or maybe it’s just that they’re required by law to reveal it.

Baltimore city government was hit with an attack that shut down most of their servers. And before that, Atlanta got hit and constituents couldn’t access applications for bill paying, court records and some other things.

There’s an old saying that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure; well, a few dollars of prevention could have prevented many dollars of a painful cure for these organizations. And it’s probably not worth relying on the old standby of “it won’t happen to me.”

Ransomware is a tricky beast. It doesn’t sneak in through the back door like hacker attacks that try to break into your IT systems. Ransomware walks right through the front door, hitching a ride with somebody who already has a key to the door: that is, your users. Typically, an attack happens because someone clicked on a link in an email or visited an infected website. Once on the user’s computer, the malware has direct access to your network.

How to stop it? User education initiatives are important, as is keeping systems patched to avoid exploits. And of course, back up your data! You can find more helpful information here, along with some scary statistics.

One of the main areas that are exposed to ransomware are your file shares. Finding a network file share is like hitting the jackpot for the malware, which starts to encrypt one file after another.

If your file shares (CIFS/NFS) happen to be on NetApp filers, we have a great solution for you. It’s called CryptoSpike and it comes from our technology partner ProLion. What makes CryptoSpike a good tool for fighting ransomware? Here’s a few things:

  • It uses multiple technology approaches to detect and stop malware, including a Learner Module that detects unusual user behavior. This allows you to detect Day Zero attacks.
  • CryptoSpike stops the spread of the attack by cutting off the infected user’s access to the file shares. Some files may get encrypted, but the attack is stopped before it spreads too widely.
  • Because it works with NetApp snapshots, CryptoSpike lets you easily revert back to an earlier snapshot, and at the file level. That’s critical because you don’t want to have to revert an entire volume with thousands or millions of files if only a few were infected. CryptoSpike helps you pin-point the infection and roll it back.

There’s lots more you can do with CryptoSpike. Want a quick look? You can watch our demo video. If you like what you see, why not request a trial copy? You can test it out for yourself. And it’s priced per NetApp controller, so no worries about number of users or files or disk capacity.

And whether you consider CryptoSpike or something else, please do consider something. You really don’t want to be figuring out how to send bitcoins to some hackers. That’s sure to ruin your day.

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07/08/2019 0 Comments

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