Almost one year ago PlateSpin (acquired by Novell in February) had the brilliant idea of using its popular P2V migration technology, PowerConvert, for disaster recovery tasks.
So they licensed VMware Infrastructure 3, put it into a physical appliance, and built the missing components to automate a continuous P2V migration of the protected physical servers into the virtual infrastructure. Such thing was called Forge.
PlateSpin didn’t say how many units has sold so far (it may be very complex for a virtualization firm to talk to the security department), but at least another company thinks its a good idea: Plan B DR.
This UK firm has just launched a physical appliance which is pretty similar to Forge but with an important difference: the virtualization platform is not there.
Instead of hosting the P2V’ed image locally as virtual machines, the Plan B DR appliance encrypts them and sends them to the company’s data center, where the VMware Infrastructure is waiting.
With this (very risky) approach seems to precede in time what VMware wants to offer next year: at VMworld 2008 in fact the company said that the first step for SMBs to embrace cloud computing would be by replicating production servers inside the cloud for disaster recovery purposes.
In the vendor’s plans this should happen with VI 4.0 and its new VMware Fault Tolerance (FT) feature but, details apart, Plan B DR seems to have the same identical goal.