Veeam Backup & Replication is well liked by its many hundreds of thousands of customers as it is a very powerful, efficient and reliable solution, but to get the best out of the technology you need advanced primary storage and efficient secondary storage backup targets.
To get the best out of Veeam your primary storage needs to support:
- Zero performance overhead snapshots
- Snapshots that can be taken every few minutes
- The ability to maintain 100s of snapshots per volume
- Efficient replication of snapshots with the ability to have different retention policies
- Using local and remote snapshots as a source for backups
- Granular recovery of files and objects from VM snapshots
- Booting VMs directly from writable snapshots for instant recovery
- Spinning-up VMs from writable snapshots for test environments and parallel processing
The key word here is snapshots, so what is needed is a storage platform that has state-of-the-art snapshot capabilities. For over 20 years NetApp has built snapshot-based data protection into its FAS platform whereas its major competitors, EMC, HP and IBM, dismissed snapshots and instead focused on conventional disk to disk/tape backups.
Over the last couple of decades NetApp added a wide range of data protection features including SnapRestore, SnapMirror, SnapVault, SnapManager and SnapCenter, and many of their customers took full advantage of these advanced capabilities. At the same time the other major storage vendors continued to tell their customers that snapshots were not backups and this allowed NetApp to build-up a huge technology lead over them.
It was therefore not surprising that when Veeam came to build storage array snapshot integration into their product, NetApp FAS was the first platform that was supported. Veeam takes the already very powerful and mature data protection features of FAS and adds application-aware snapshot orchestration, the ability to take conventional backups to disk, tape and cloud, and Explorer for Snapshots to enable granular recovery of individual files and objects.
So if you are not using storage array snapshots with Veeam Backup and Replication you are missing out on a huge range of benefits and if your current storage platform is not up to the task then I would highly recommend taking a good look at NetApp FAS.
Read more about “Why you should include NetApp in your next storage purchase short-list” here.
Now let’s move onto secondary storage backup targets, here the requirements are very different to primary storage and include:
- High throughput architecture to enable shorter backup windows and faster recoveries
- Low cost per usable TB of capacity and GB/s of throughput
- Simple to deploy, manage and expand
- Granular capacity scaling, as much or as little as needed at a time
- High availability with no single points of failure
No snapshots required here, and purpose built backup appliances (PBBAs) can look attractive, but when you factor into account that Veeam already de-duplicates and compresses the backup jobs they really fall short when it comes to the last three points.
NetApp E-Series is the almost complete antithesis of FAS, whereas FAS has rich data services which is perfect for primary storage, E-Series is “lean and mean” and therefore is perfect as a backup target. With its ultra low latency, high throughput architecture it easily meets the requirements above, and with its Dynamic Disk Pools (DDP) feature it provides effortless pool management and granular capacity expansion by one or more drives at a time.
So whether you need a cost effective backup target for Veeam of 10s or 100s of TBs, or even PBs E-Series has you covered both today and well into the future as your capacity requirements scale.
Veeam sponsored IDC to survey a number of large joint NetApp and Veeam customers and the results were fascinating:
You can download the “The Business Value of Using Veeam and NetApp to Reduce Data-Related Risks” IDC White Paper here.
Did I also mention that NetApp is the highest rated supplier in the latest Gartner “Magic Quadrant for Primary Storage” report? You can read the full report here.