Feature Update October 2023
“The Halloween Release”
Our Fall CloudCasa release this year was timed to coincide with Halloween, the traditional season (at least in the US, UK, and Canada) for trick-or-treating and of course for ghoulies, ghosties, long-leggedy beasties, and things that go bump in the night. And, maybe scariest of all, candy. Lots and lots of candy. But our engineering team has outdone themselves yet again by delivering some pretty great treats in this release with absolutely no tricks (and no added sugar)! The following new features have been added since our last major update in July.
The biggest new feature by far in this release is the general availability of our new CloudCasa Self-hosted option. This option allows enterprise customers who are unable to use SaaS to install and run their own private instance of CloudCasa, either on-premises or in the cloud. The self-hosted option includes nearly all of the great CloudCasa features you’ve come to know and love. The only exceptions are that CloudCasa storage isn’t available with self-hosted, and cloud integration isn’t available in the first release (it’s coming later). Contact us for further details and pricing.
Enterprise SSO option
With this release we’ve added full support for federation with popular enterprise identity and access management (IAM) systems. This allows enterprise users to access CloudCasa using their organization’s single sign-on (SSO) logins. This is an extra cost option. Contact us for further details and pricing.
Full ARM64 support
We now have full ARM64 architecture support for the CloudCasa agent, including support for all CloudCasa Pro features. This includes support for, among others, clusters running on AWS Graviton, Azure Ampere Altra, and GCP Tau T2A instances (which are also based on Ampere Altra). You should now be able to install the agent as usual on clusters using ARM processor-based nodes. No special installation procedure is required.
Support for backup & restore of external load balancers for EKS
We have added the ability for CloudCasa to back up and restore (create) external load balancers linked to EKS clusters. Backing up is automatic when CloudCasa is linked to the relevant AWS cloud account.
For restores, a new Load Balancers step has been added to Restore cluster wizard. Note that for each load balancer selected, CloudCasa will also restore backed up resources required for the load balancer, such as health checks, forwarding rules, firewall rules, backend services, target proxies, and global IP addresses.
Support is provided for any LBs created through the AWS Load Balancer controller, and also any LBs created separately. This includes AWS ALBs, NLBs, and classic load balancers.
Equivalent functionality for AKS and GKE will be coming in a future update.
New advanced parameters for restores
Three new advanced parameters have been added to restore definitions, which allow users to tune the parallelism of restore jobs for better performance. Two concurrency settings allow the number of PVs and the number of files per PV that will be restored in parallel to be modified. By default, 2 PVs and 8 files per PV will be restored in parallel. Increasing parallelism can increase the speed of the restore at the expense of more memory and bandwidth usage.
The new Data mover memory limit setting controls the maximum amount of memory that the data mover pod will be permitted to allocate during the restore process. This can be set between 512MB and 8GB, with a default of 768MB. Higher values may be required if large settings for PV and/or file parallelism are used.
See the on-line documentation for more details.
Azure Files data mover now supports StorageClass mapping for snapshots during backup
CloudCasa’s Azure Files data mover has been modified in order to support StorageClass mapping for snapshot PVs mounted during copy backup operations. This can be used in cases where Delete Lock settings in certain Azure Storage Accounts prevent temporary snapshot PVs from being deleted after copy backups complete. See the KB article Leftover Azure Files PVs after copy backup for more details.
Image Pull Secret option added to Add Cluster wizard
A new advanced option called Image pull secret has been added to the Add Cluster Wizard. This can be used to set the name of a secret in the cloudcasa-io namespace on the client cluster that will be used to pull CloudCasa agent images from the registry. Defining this may be necessary if you wish to pull agent images from your own registry, or if you wish to authenticate to the public registry to prevent throttling of pull requests. By default, no secret will be used.
Note: When setting or changing the image pull secret for a cluster that already has the agent installed, the agent must first be removed, the secret created in the cloudcasa-io namespace and configured with this option, and then the agent re-installed.
For details on using this option to overcome Docker Hub pull limits, see the KB article Overcoming Docker Hub Pull Limits by Authenticating.
My Permissions display
A My permissions button has been added to the User Settings panel (reachable by opening the user menu and selecting User Settings). Clicking on it will open the My permissions dialog, which contains two tabs. The Global tab lists all of the global permissions granted to the current user in the currently selected organization, either by roles assigned to them or roles assigned to groups they belong to. The Clusters tab lists any access permissions for specific cluster and/or namespaces assigned through ACLs.
Resource list file now included in log download package
The backup logs downloadable via the Download logs link on the Activity Details page have been augmented with the addition of a file containing a list of all resources backed up. The new file is named with the suffix “describe-details.log”.
Change to Storage “Bucket name” field
Azure blob storage does not have the concept of buckets, so for Azure storage, the Bucket name field in the Configuration/Storage page now displays the Azure storage account name.
Other UI changes
The cluster dashboard has been improved with the addition of Remove and Edit button at the upper right of the screen. This makes these options easier to find.
We have added the ability to filter recovery points by cloud in any of the places recovery points are listed. This allows you to more easily find appropriate recovery points.
Minor usability improvements throughout.
Compatibility with Microsoft Azure Container Storage Preview
We are pleased to announce that, working with Microsoft’s Azure Container Storage team, we have certified CloudCasa as being fully compatible with the latest preview version of Azure Container Storage.
Deprecation of Security Scanning features
With this release we are announcing the deprecation of CloudCasa’s security scanning features, which have been in beta since February of last year. Usage of the security features has just not been sufficient to justify promoting them to GA and developing them further. We feel that we can serve our customers better by focusing our efforts on more backup, restore, DR, and migration features instead.
We expect to retire CloudCasa’s Security tab and the features it contains sometime in Q4. We recommend making use of Aqua Security’s excellent open source Trivy vulnerability scanning tool instead, components of which are used by CloudCasa’s scanning system. Please contact us if you have any questions.
Kubernetes agent updates
In this update we’ve again made several changes to our Kubernetes agent to add features, improve performance, and fix bugs. However, manual updates shouldn’t normally be necessary anymore because of the automatic agent update feature. If you have automatic updates disabled for any of your agents, you should update them manually as soon as possible.
With some browsers you may need to restart, hit Control-F5, and/or clear the cache to make sure you have the latest version of the CloudCasa web app when first logging in after the update. You can also try selectively removing cookies and site data for cloudcasa.io if you encounter any odd behavior.
As always, we want to hear your feedback on new features! You can contact us via the user forum, using the support chat feature, or by sending email to email@example.com.