Data Protection for On-Premise Dark Site Environments

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Not all data is connected to the internet. Dark sites, also referred to as offline networks or closed networks, are on-premise computer environments that have no connection to the public internet. This constraint might be physical, such as a military vessel, or it might be a function of data sensitivity, such as strict security protocols for highly-sensitive data. However, regardless of its infrastructure, every bit of data needs a backup.

Data protection solutions that require access to the public cloud, either for license activation or backup target, are not an option in these scenarios. Organizations need a backup suite that is able to function with no contact with the outside world. Retrospect delivers complete data protection in a software-only package for these offline situations. PDF version also available.

Retrospect’s Data-Centric Approach

With Retrospect’s data-centric approach, you can protect your entire environment with efficient backups for point-in-time restores while remaining disconnected from the public internet Let’s walk through what differentiates Retrospect as a data protection solution for closed networks:

  • Software Only: Retrospect can be deployed as a software package to any server, endpoint, or virtual machine.

  • Offline Support: Retrospect can function entirely offline, and the documentation is available as a PDF.

  • Complete Data Protection: Retrospect fully supports data protection for servers, endpoints, external drives, and NAS volumes.

  • Forever-Incremental Backup: Retrospect provides storage-efficient backups with its forever-incremental file-based backup technology.

  • Disaster Recovery: Retrospect supports full disaster recovery (DR) capabilities, also known as bare-metal recovery (BMR).

  • On-Prem Cloud Backup: Retrospect can use an on-premise cloud target if it supports the S3 protocol, including MinIO.

Retrospect Backup

For physical backup of servers and endpoints, Retrospect Backup provides a great solution, and licensing it for a closed network is no different from an open network or cloud environment. Let’s walk through installing it in a dark site:

  1. Purchase Retrospect Backup and receive the license code. Copy this code to enter on the closed network computer.

  2. Download Retrospect Backup and copy onto storage media for the closed network computer.

  3. Install Retrospect Backup on the closed network computer.

  4. Launch Retrospect Backup. It will prompt you for a license code.

  5. Enter in the license code and continue setting up Retrospect Backup.

  6. Retrospect’s documentation is available online as well as in a PDF to view offline.

Retrospect Virtual

For virtual backup of VMware and Hyper-V machines, Retrospect Virtual is an excellent solution, and you can license it easily. Let’s walk through the steps:

  1. Purchase Retrospect Virtual and receive the license code. Copy this code to enter on the closed network computer.

  2. Download Retrospect Virtual and copy onto storage media for the closed network computer.

  3. Install Retrospect Virtual on the closed network computer.

  4. Launch Retrospect Virtual and navigate to License.

  5. Scroll down to Offline License Request and Import License.

  6. Click the Generate button to generate an offline license request file, req.olr.

  7. The req.olr file is an encrypted file that contains all the information required for the activation process, for example, MAC address and local IP address. The system will prompt for the location to save the offline license request file.

  8. When the offline license request file is ready, please send it to the Retrospect Support team. An offline license file, license.olr, will be generated and sent back to you. This file is used to offline activate the license key.

  9. After you have received the offline license file, you would need to import it to the server to complete the offline activation process.

  10. Click the Choose File button under the Import License section to select the offline license file (license.olr). Click the Off-line Update button to complete the license activation process.


Last Update: 17 Gen 2022