Vendorwag with Andrew Barnes of NeverFail [Episode 34]


This weeks first vendorwag is with Andrew Barnes of Neverfail. I’ve been working with Neverfail in the shape of VMware’s vCenter Heartbeat for sometime, and went to so far to write a extended series of articles on the product. Of course, Neverfail as an availability and DR technology is about a lot more than just protecting VMware’s management service. And so my interest in them as company was spawned by a much general interest in the whole issue of availability. Wonderful though, VMware’s HA is – it only goes so far – and doesn’t (yet) go up the stack to protect services in the GoS.


Here’s a bit of background on Andrew:


Andrew is a technology evangelist and industry watcher who is old enough to remember most IT initiatives from the first time around! With close to 30 years in the industry he has seen many aspects of IT adoption and has a particular interest in how IT Infrastructures aid (or prevent) delivery of real world business value. He is currently Senior Vice President for Neverfail with responsibilities covering strategic direction, product marketing and messaging. He joined Neverfail in early 2007 and during that time has seen Neverfail grow by over 400%. Prior to that Andrew was Director of Marketing the KVS, the email archiving company which grew 10 fold ahead of its acquisition by Veritas (now Symantec).


Previous roles include various pre-sales, product marketing and product management with companies such as Sun, Platinum Technology and Ingres. Back in the mists of time he developed and deployed Oracle based applications delivering financial and customer management systems.


These are the questions we discussed:

  • On our recent web-ex you said that “replication is a commodity”.  I was interested to know what was meant by that?
  • I’ve worked a lot with vCHB recently – Can you explain how that relationship between Neverfail and VMware came about?
  • How does that relationship work from QA perspective – Does Neverfail do the core development and testing against the latest version of vCenter – which is then validated by VMware?
  • In vCHB, the “VMware Channel” is used for replication and heartbeat signals, and the Principal Public Network is used for inbound requests – does Neverfail plan to allow administrators to allow the Principal Public Network to take over the functions of the VMware Channel should it become unavailable?
  • What are the challenges are there when compare a LAN based install of Neverfail compared to a WAN based configuration?
  • You have a technology called Neverfail vAppHA which integrates with vSphere – many people might be unaware what this technology is and what it does – and how does it work?
  • Can you tell me more about the P2V extender? Is it just another P2V tool?
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