Nakivo adds ransomware scanning and new restore options

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Backup product maker Nakivo has announced new features in the version 10.9 release of its Backup & Replication software.

The latest version adds ransomware malware scanning – which adds to existing capabilities for immutable copies – to its list of functionality. New also are bare metal recovery and recovery from tape directly to virtual machine (VM).

Nakivo was founded in 2012 and started out by specialising in VM backup. Its version 1.0 offered VMware support and installation on Windows.

It now supports workloads in VMware, Microsoft Hyper-V, Nutanix, Windows and Linux, and in the cloud in Amazon EC2 and Microsoft 365.

It supports use cases that range from small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), to large enterprises and managed service providers, with deployment possible on NAS, Windows and Linux, as well as in a virtual appliance or from an Amazon instance in the cloud. It can restore with granularity that ranges from single files to entire sites.

The malware scanning functionality allows Nakivo users to analyse existing backup datasets for the presence of ransomware. This works in concert with threat databases from a number of security specialists, including Windows Defender, Kaspersky, Sophos and Clam.

Infected backups can be restored to an isolated environment for forensic analysis.

Malware detection is built on top of existing abilities to make backup copies immutable so that attackers cannot compromise them. One possibility here is the ability to write Nakivo backups to Amazon S3 using object locks. The same functionality also works if using Wasabi as a cloud target. Another is that local backups via Nakivo on Linux can also be made immutable.

Bare metal restore is a new feature in this version, which vice-president for product marketing Segei Serdyuk said was a result of customer demand, adding: “There’s big demand for it in the industry because a lot of customers still run bare metal.”

“A lot of people say tape is dead. But it’s still going strong and people like it because it introduces a physical air gap which is useful as protection from ransomware and is also cheap for long-term storage”
Segei Serdyuk, Nakivo

In a similar vein, Nakivo also added direct restore from tape in this upgrade. That means customers can restore VMs and physical machines backed up to tape directly as VMs. That eliminates the need for a staging repository between tape and the restore target environment.

The new functionality can restore VMware, Hyper-V and Nutanix VMs, as well as Amazon EC2 instances and physical machines, directly from tape.

“A lot of people say tape is dead,” said Serdyuk. “But it’s still going strong and people like it because it introduces a physical air gap which is useful as protection from ransomware and is also cheap for long-term storage.”

Nakivo has also added a direct management console for managed service providers (MSPs), which Serdyuk said was a result of increasing numbers of resellers wanting to offer their customers services that include backup. The console allows for functional and security separation between a service provider’s customer tenants.

What about container backup and cloud-to-cloud backup? Nakivo is yet to get to these. Serdyuk said container backup was “in the works” and would be announced at an unspecified future date.

Cloud-to-cloud backup has not been asked for by customers, he said, but did not rule out its introduction because “it’s not always the case that customers necessarily know what they might want before they get it”. 

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