Symantec touts NetBackup 7, Backup Exec 2010, 'deduplication everywhere'

Backups can be managed globally

Symantec has announced NetBackup 7 for enterprises and Backup Exec 2010 for mid-sized firms, both of which offer data deduplication and archiving technology.

Symantec said the new versions of its popular backup software suites are the first to offer granular data recovery of Microsoft Exchange, SQL and Active Directory in VMware and Hyper-V environments from a single backup, meaning they also enable incremental backups. Separately, Backup Exec 7 also adds support for Microsoft Windows 2008 R2, Hyper-V R2, Exchange 2010, Windows 7 and VMware vSphere 4.0.

This is the first time Symantec has offered deduplication across its entire line of backup products.

"You're bringing enterprise-class technology - deduplication - into the mid market, and that drives really great storage and cost savings," said Matthew Lodge, senior director of product marketing for Symantec.

Enabling the data deduplication function on both NetBackup 7 and Backup Exec 2010 requires only a single check mark in a pop-up box, Lodge said.

Both products implement the feature at three levels: Source or client deduplication, which compresses data at the backup server; media server deduplication, which aggregates deduplication for numerous backups; and third-party appliance deduplication for virtual tape libraries and other disk-based backup appliances.

"This gives you the ability to manage and control the backups from within the backup application, even though they're stored on a third-party device," Lodge said, pointing to appliance partners such as Quantum and Exagrid. "Our thought process was deduplication everywhere, but you have to make sure you manage that from a single place - in the backup application."

Symantec said it has also improved NetBackup's support for virtual servers and storage, particularly around granular recovery or virtual server backups, which allows the recovery of virtual server environments right down to a single file or e-mail, Lodge said.

Symantec has introduced VMware Block Optimization on NetBackup 7 for virtual machine backups. Block Optimization creates a single image for a virtual machine and tags blocks that are not being used so that they are excluded from the backup process. That can improve performance as much as 10% to 20%, Lodge said.

Symantec also added its Enterprise Vault archiving application , which already existed in NetBackup, to Backup Exec 7. Enterprise Vault allows administrators to set up policies that automatically archive backups and then delete old files.

For example, using the feature with an Exchange server would allow an administrator to set policies that would archive and then delete backup images of a certain age.

"You might set up a policy that says, 'I want to archive anything older than three months in Exchange,' and then it will go back and delete those files from Exchange automatically. That prunes out the old content, and helps you reduce the size of your Exchange systems, which makes them perform better, and it improves your backup performance," Lodge said. "That way, you're not continuously backing up things that never change and are old."

On NetBackup 7, Symantec added automated replication for deduplicated data, meaning only data changes are sent across a WAN to a secondary disaster recovery site, reducing the amount of bandwidth required for remote replication. "It makes it possible to do backup replications you couldn't do before because they're too large," Lodge said.

Symantec also rolled out what it calls Console Integration, which allows administrators to go beyond monitoring backups in one data center, as NetBackup v6.5 allowed. Instead, they can monitor all backups within a global organization, creating a single point of management.

The company also integrated replication technologies through its NetBackup RealTime tool, which allows administrators to view all replication operations from a single management console.

Symantec Backup Exec 2010 and NetBackup 7 are scheduled to be available on Feb. 1. Backup Exec 2010 will have a suggested price of $1,174 for a media server license and Basic Maintenance. The two new Backup Exec 2010 Suites that include deduplication and archiving options have a suggested price of $2,708 to $3,888 with Basic Maintenance. Symantec NetBackup 7 will have a suggested price of $7,995 for an Enterprise Server and five client licenses.

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