Mark III Systems Blog

Cohesity and the Cloud

Cohesity has been one of the biggest disrupters in the data protection market in recent years.  There are several reasons for this, and what many may find most compelling is its intuitive management interface and streamlined deployment process.  But Cohesity also provides a lot of agility in regards to both data placement and data location. 

What I mean by that is this - Cohesity has the ability to copy or archive backup data from your data center to the cloud (data placement).  It also allows you to backup data located IN the cloud (data location).  Believe it or not, even in 2021, cloud integration isn't even an optional feature on some of the more established "legacy" backup products.

Cohesity offers plenty of versatility to handle any type of cloud strategy. When I first learned about the different cloud options offered by Cohesity DataPlatform, I had a hard time keeping track of each feature and its purpose.  Here's my quick guide to better understanding each cloud feature and its typical use cases:

CloudTier - extends the storage capacity of a Cohesity cluster.  As data ages or becomes "cold", it is moved from internal storage to cloud storage, such as Azure blob or Amazon S3.  This is accomplished by first registering your cloud storage as an External Target within Cohesity.  This can be a more economical alternative to buying lots of Cohesity cluster capacity.

CloudArchive - quite similar to CloudTier, except data is copied to the cloud at fixed intervals (daily, weekly, monthly).  Saves on storage costs by not having to store full backups on prem.  Long term retention is the main goal here.  Note that this is not to be confused with CloudArchive Direct, which is separate feature that is primarily intended for migrating NAS data into the cloud.

CloudSpin - leverages backups to "spin up" VMs in the cloud.  These are converted to cloud-native formats automatically (VHD for Azure, EC2 for Amazon) automatically and seamlessly.  One use case for this would be forproviding test/dev resources.

CloudRetrieve - this is not so much a feature but a process in which archived data in the cloud is recalled back to the local cluster.

Cloud Edition - a virtual edition of Cohesity that runs in the cloud.  You setup the Cohesity node VMs in the cloud and protect your cloud native workloads, and/or create a VPN to connect your on prem cluster for replication purposes.