2. About Acronis Cyber Infrastructure

Acronis Cyber Infrastructure, previously known as Acronis Storage and Acronis Software-Defined Infrastructure (SDI), is a hyperconverged solution providing storage, compute, and network resources for businesses and service providers to:

  • Deliver file storage for any corporate data, S3 object storage for applications and cloud services, and block storage for running virtual machines or databases with iSCSI targets
  • Build and manage private or public clouds with the Disaster Recovery solution
  • Store backups from Acronis Cyber Protection solutions on premises, in public clouds, or on NAS
  • Create and manage virtual machines and software-defined networks
  • Run cloud-native applications in production environments, including Kubernetes as a Service, Load Balancer as a Service, and Persistent Storage for Kubernetes
  • Ensure high availability for business-critical applications

Acronis Cyber Infrastructure installed on bare-metal servers unites them into a single cluster, which can be easily scaled by adding disks or nodes. The cluster is managed via a highly available web-based admin panel and the command line. The admin panel provides extensive monitoring of the storage and compute clusters, as well as networks. The overview dashboards are integrated with Prometheus, Grafana, SNMP, and Zabbix, to provide an insight into the infrastructure status. In addition, the alerts system keeps the administrator informed about misconfiguration, failures, and other issues.

Clustering helps avoid data loss with replication and erasure coding. With high availability enabled, the cluster and services have no single point of failure. Acronis Cyber Infrastructure cluster is self-healing: if a node or disk fails, the cluster will automatically try to restore the lost data. Besides, with non-disruptive rolling updates the data stays available even when updating the nodes. In case of a node maintenance or applying hotfixes, the workload is migrated to other available nodes.

2.1. Software-defined storage

The storage cluster provides the most efficient usage of the hardware with erasure coding, integrated SSD caching, automatic load balancing, and RDMA/InfiniBand support. The cluster space can be used for:

  • iSCSI block storage (hot data and virtual machines)
  • S3 object storage (protected with Acronis Notary blockchain and with geo-replication between datacenters)
  • File storage (NFS)

In addition, Acronis Cyber Infrastructure is integrated with Acronis Cyber Protection solutions for storing backups in the cluster, sending them to cloud services (like Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, and AWS S3), or storing them on NAS via the NFS protocol. Geo-replication is available for Backup Gateways set up on different storage backends: a local storage cluster, NFS share, or public cloud.

Data storage policies can be customized to meet various use cases: each data volume can have a specific redundancy mode, storage tier, and failure domain. Moreover, the data can be encrypted with the AES-256 standard.

2.2. Software-defined compute

The compute cluster provides virtualization management for virtual machines and software-defined networks. In Acronis Cyber Infrastructure, virtual machines are based on open-source technology and can run both Windows and Linux guests. They are also highly available and can be migrated live with no downtime. Moreover, VM volume snapshots are application consistent.

Acronis Cyber Infrastructure provides for the most efficient usage of the compute resources with Kubernetes as a Service, Load Balancer as a Service, and metering for account compute resources. To allocate space to virtual machines and select different redundancy modes, storage policies are applied to VM volumes. Storage policies can also limit bandwidth and IOPS in order to provide predictable performance levels for VM disks. Besides, to distribute the workload between nodes, the virtual machine placement can be based on the node characteristics.

In Acronis Cyber Infrastructure, administrators can create multiple domains, tenants, and users, and allocate resources according to tenant quotas. Moreover, they can use white-labeling to build their own public or private cloud storage solutions. At that, independent end users of compute resources are isolated and secure in their own self-service portals.

2.3. Software-defined networks

Acronis Cyber Infrastructure provides secure and isolated virtual networking for virtual machines using VXLAN encapsulation. The distributed virtual switching and routing simplify VM network configuration, and the built-in firewall makes it more secure. The integrated DHCP, IP, and DNS management provides for enhanced configuration of the network.