UPDATED 04:00 EDT / MAY 18 2021


Rubrik takes on ransomware with AppFlows and bulk application recovery

Rubrik Inc. kicked off its Forward virtual event today with the introduction of new software features and a cloud tool called AppFlows that companies can use to recover data lost because of ransomware.

Rubrik is one of the industry’s biggest privately-held providers of data protection software with a $3.3 billion valuation as of its last funding round. Last February, the company disclosed a $600 million annualized run rate.

The first major highlight of Rubrik’s product updates today is a bulk application recovery feature. It’s designed for scenarios where a ransomware infection renders not one but multiple workloads unusable. The new feature, Rubrik says, allows companies to map out all the applications that were compromised, find the most recent uncompromised copies of the applications’ respective datasets and start restoring them within a few minutes.

The promised benefit is less business downtime. By compressing the initial steps of the application recovery process into a few minutes, Rubrik says, the feature can speed up companies’ response to ransomware and thereby enable them to resume operations faster.  

Rubrik debuted the feature alongside AppFlows, a new cloud-based tool likewise focused on restoring enterprise applications. It can be used to recover data encrypted by ransomware, as well as workloads taken offline by hardware outages. 

Rubrik built AppFlows for situations where an application needs to be recovered at a new location, such as a cloud-based backup environment, because the original infrastructure on which it was deployed is no longer available. On launch, the tool supports VMware-virtualized workloads. AppFlows can spin up a backup copy of a virtualized workload either in an off-premises VMware Cloud on AWS deployment or an on-premises disaster recovery site. 

The mission-critical applications for which enterprises implement disaster recovery procedures are often quite complicated. A workload can, for  example, have multiple components that may need to be brought online at a specific order. For such workloads, AppFlows makes it possible to create recovery “blueprints” that define the sequence in which components should be restored. Administrators can launch the blueprint when an outage happens to skip the delay of having to come up with a recovery plan on the spot. 

Specifying the order in which application components should be restarted often isn’t the only information needed for a successful restoration. Administrators also need to specify exactly what mix of compute, storage and network resources the application needs to run. AppFlows makes it possible to incorporate that data into recovery blueprints as well for faster restoration, according to Rubrik.  

Rubrik is looking not only to speed up customers’ response to ransomware infections but also to help them investigate breaches better. To that end, today’s updates introduces a security dashboard that gives administrators a view of all their organizations’ data so they can identify compromised files more easily. Rubrik’s Polaris cloud product, in turn, is receiving new features tracking who is accessing and modifying files inside the corporate network.

Rubrik is at least the fourth player in the data management and storage market to have expanded its ransomware mitigation features over the last six months. Clumio Inc., Pure Storage Inc. and Veeam Inc. have all recently introduced immutable storage features that protect data by storing it in an immutable form that can’t be modified or deleted. The flurry of product updates followed an estimated 715% surge in the number of reported ransomware infections during 2020. 

Rubrik also announced a few other product enhancements at Forward today, most of which focus on providing better support for popular enterprise applications. Rubrik’s automated backup and recovery features now work with SAP SE’s HANA database. There are also improved interactions with the Cassandra database, Kubernetes and Microsoft 365, as well as Oracle Corp., Nutanix Inc. and vSphere Metro Storage Cluster environments.

Photo of Rubrik CEO Bipul Sinha: Rubrik

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