Overview of the SANtricity® Cloud Connector

Contributors NetAppZacharyWambold netapp-asubhas netapp-jsnyder netapp-jolieg

The SANtricity Cloud Connector is a host-based Linux application that enables you to perform full block-based and file-based backup and recovery of E-Series volumes to S3 complaint accounts (for example, Amazon Simple Storage Service and NetApp StorageGRID) and NetApp AltaVault appliance.

Available for installation on RedHat and SUSE Linux platforms, the SANtricity Cloud Connector is a packaged solution (.bin file). After you install SANtricity Cloud Connector, you can configure the application to perform backup and restore jobs for E-Series volumes to an AltaVault appliance or to your existing Amazon S3 or StorageGRID accounts. All jobs performed through the SANtricity Cloud Connector use REST-based APIs.

Considerations

When using these procedures, be aware that:

  • Configuration and backup/restore jobs described in these procedures apply to the graphical user interface version of the SANtricity Cloud Connector.

  • REST API workflows for the SANtricity Cloud Connector application are not described in these procedures. For experienced developers, endpoints are available for each SANtricity Cloud Connector operation under the API documentation. The API documentation is accessible by navigating to http://<hostname.domain>:<port>/docs through a browser.

Types of backups

The SANtricity Cloud Connector provides two types of backups: image-based and file-based backups.

  • Image-based backup

    An image-based backup reads the raw data blocks from a snapshot volume and backs them up to a file known as an image. All of the data blocks on the snapshot volume are backed up, including empty blocks, blocks occupied by deleted files, blocks associated with partitioning, and filesystem metadata. Image backups have the advantage of storing all information with the snapshot volume regardless of the partitioning scheme or filesystems on it.

    The image is not stored on the Backup Target as a single file, but is instead broken up into a series of data chunks, which are 64MB in size. The data chunks allow SANtricity Cloud Connector to use multiple connections to the backup target, thereby improving the performance of the backup process.

    For backups to StorageGRID and Amazon Web Services (S3), each data chunk uses a separate encryption key to encrypt the chunk. The key is a SHA256 hash consisting of the combination of a user supplied passphrase and the SHA256 hash of the user data. For backups to AltaVault, SANtricity Cloud Connector does not encrypt the data chunks as AltaVault performs this operation.

  • File-based backup

    A file-based backup reads the files contained with a filesystem partition and backs them up into a series of data chunks that are 64MB in size. A file-based backup does not back up deleted files or partitioning and filesystem metadata. As with image-based backups, the data chunks allow SANtricity Cloud Connector to use multiple connections to the backup target, thereby improving performance of the backup process.

    For backups to StorageGRID and Amazon Web Services, each data chunk uses a separate encryption key to encrypt the chunk. The key is a SHA256 hash consisting of the combination of user-supplied pass phrase and the SHA256 hash of the user data. For backups to AltaVault, the data chunks are not encrypted by SANtricity Cloud Connector because AltaVault performs this operation.