On Tuesday, Aug. 23, we made the biggest announcement in Veeam’s history — a strategic addition to its portfolio of products. To illustrate our expanded vision, we unveiled many new features and products, including the rock star announcement, Veeam Availability Platform for the Hybrid Cloud. For those of you who weren’t able to attend the live online event, you can play the recorded breakout sessions to discover more new offering specifics from our technical experts. And while you’re at it, be sure to register to be the first to know when NEW Veeam Availability Suite 9.5 arrives next quarter.

We received a lot of feedback on different channels, as well as multiple follow-up questions about upcoming platform components. In response to some of the more frequently asked questions, Anton Gostev, our VP of Product Management, decided to dedicate his weekly forum post to answering questions. The following is an excerpt of what Anton had to say.

New products and features

Besides Veeam Availability Platform, we introduced more features for Veeam Availability Suite 9.5 (due to be available in Q4 2016), Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows, Veeam Agent for Linux, Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 (also expected in Q4 2016), and a sneak peek at Veeam Availability Suite v10. Below you can find a Q&A on these new releases.

Q: Does Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 support backing up SharePoint and OneDrive?

A: No, the first version of Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 is for mailbox items only (emails, calendar and contacts). As always, we're looking forward to your feedback to help us prioritize future functionality for this new offering!

Q: How can Veeam Agents be centrally deployed, managed and monitored?

A: Centralized job monitoring (via the Veeam Backup & Replication console) and reporting (via email notifications) is available for both free and licensed editions when backing up to a Veeam backup repository. Centralized deployment, configuration and management strategies depend on the deployment size:

  • Under 10 Veeam Agents: Manual deployment and management is recommended.
  • Above 10 Veeam Agents: Using remote configuration and management API available in licensed agents to automatically deploy and configure agents with logon scripts, Group Policy, SCCM, or whatever tool or method you have in place for software distribution is recommended.
  • Hundreds of Veeam Agents and multiple locations (hybrid cloud, remote offices, home offices, mobile users, etc.): Veeam Availability Console is recommended.

Q: Is Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows a brand new offering?

A: No, Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows is the next version of Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE. If it weren’t for the name change, we would have called it Veeam Endpoint Backup 2.0, but we needed a more generic name to reflect its full-server support that’s available with the Server edition license.

Licensing and pricing models

In short, nothing has changed in licensing for existing products. To find out more, read the below Q&A and review the Veeam licensing portal.

Q: Why are you changing the product licensing? We loved your per-socket model.

A: Actually, there are NO changes in licensing for any of our existing products; everything remains as is (per-socket perpetual + yearly maintenance fee). We are trying the new model (annual per-VM or per-agent subscription) only for the NEW offerings where per-socket licensing makes no sense. We believe it is the right time for this experiment, because offering subscription models is where the IT market is moving as a whole, and also because there's low risk for us to try it (only new products will potentially be impacted). It's going to be a learning experience for us, and we will closely monitor the feedback for sure.

Q: Does it mean that Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE is going away?

A: Two years ago, we said that endpoint backup must be simple and free, and we stand behind this statement! We will continue to provide a free edition for Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows, and have no plans to discontinue this offering. There will be NO feature loss to the current version of Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE 1.5 (if you experience feature loss during the beta, it's a bug, so please report it). Moreover, this new version will include even more features:

  • Support for Windows Server 2016
  • Source-side backup files encryption
  • Optional periodic active fulls for better reliability of backups to a consumer-grade storage
  • Tons of minor enhancements – part of core processing-engine improvements.

And through integration with Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 (including the Free Edition), in addition to the existing application item recovery options, you will also get instant recovery of agent backups to Microsoft Hyper-V VMs, and direct restore to Microsoft Azure. All of this is available with the free edition of Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows!

Q: Why are you introducing paid editions of Veeam Agents?

A: The biggest feature of paid editions is 24.7.365 support (which also explains why we chose subscription-based pricing). Production support has been a popular demand from many customers who are not allowed to use free products with no support in their production environments. In addition, paid editions bring a few extra features that focus on enterprise use cases (check out the corresponding breakout sessions for details).

Q: How is Veeam Availability Console licensed?

A: Veeam Availability Console requires a free license that can be obtained by qualified enterprise customers (with a minimal deployment size requirement) and Veeam Cloud & Service Providers at no extra cost, and it includes 24.7.365 support. However, Veeam Availability Console can only manage licensed Veeam Backup & Replication and Veeam Agents installations (managing free editions is not supported).

Q: How is Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 licensed?

A: Pricing for this standalone offering is being finalized right now, but, most likely, it will be a per-user subscription (identical to how Office 365 itself is licensed). At launch, we will provide all Veeam Backup & Replication customers one year (for Standard and Enterprise edition customers), or three years (for Enterprise Plus customers) subscription licenses for unlimited mailboxes free-of-charge.

MORE DETAILS COMING SOON

Anton’s comments offer short answers to most common questions, but more detailed information is coming shortly, so stay tuned! And to learn more about what Veeam has in store, as well as all the 2017 Veeam product releases, join us in New Orleans next year for VeeamON 2017, the foremost Availability event. Pre-registration is open now and if you register early, Super Early Bird access includes a $200 discount!

If you have other questions about our products or licensing, contact us in the comments section below, on Veeam Forums or on the customer support portal.

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