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Imperial Tobacco Exceeds RPOs and RTOs with Veeam

The Business Challenge

Since Imperial Tobacco began in England in 1901, dramatic changes have taken place in technology, commerce and society. When Imperial Tobacco Australia opened its first office near Sydney in 1999, technology continued to advance dramatically, especially in the data centre. Today, nearly every physical server at Imperial Tobacco Australia has been virtualised on VMware vSphere. More than 100 virtual machines (VMs) run every application that is critical to the business.

Like many companies, Imperial Tobacco Australia tried using its legacy backup tool to back up and recover VMs. While the legacy tool backed up and recovered the company’s physical machines successfully, it struggled to back up and recover VMs. According to Brett Monaghan, Senior Infrastructure Engineer at Imperial Tobacco Australia, the problem was detrimental: The IT team couldn’t guarantee successful backup and recovery, which meant it couldn’t meet recovery point and recovery time objectives (RPOs and RTOs).

“It seemed we were forever having problems with the legacy backup tool, and troubleshooting took way too much of my time,” Monaghan explained. “I used to spend three to four hours a day trying to get the legacy tool to deliver reliable backups, but it was nearly impossible.

“Our sister company in the United States had used the same legacy backup tool and encountered the same problems. It replaced the legacy tool with a solution designed specifically for virtualisation and suggested I try it. In a perfect world, I want to set up a solution and forget about it. I don’t want to spend hours each day tweaking it.”

The Veeam Solution

As Imperial Tobacco Australia can attest, Veeam® Backup & Replication™ meets the requirements for a perfect world.

“You set Veeam up and forget about it,” Monaghan said. “Veeam Backup & Replication is one of those rare solutions that surprises you right out of the box. I’ve been in the industry for more than 15 years, and I haven’t seen a product that has surprised me as much as Veeam has.”

“For example, I used to spend up to half my workday troubleshooting problems with our legacy backup tool. With Veeam, I spend fewer than 30 minutes each day looking over the automated email Veeam sends me about backup status. I know straightaway if Veeam backed up our VMs successfully. With the legacy backup tool, I used to spend a significant amount of time working out which backup jobs had failed and needed to be rerun.”

“Another surprise about Veeam is backup speed,” Monaghan continued. “The first full backup with our legacy tool took 16 to 17 hours. With Veeam it took two to three hours. That’s a huge difference. Veeam is faster, more reliable, has more features and is less expensive than its competitors. Our yearly maintenance fee with Veeam is 60% less than the legacy backup tool. That’s a huge difference as well.”

Veeam Backup & Replication provides powerful, easy-to-use and affordable backup and recovery of virtualised applications and data for VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V. Veeam is used in Imperial Tobacco offices and affiliates in France, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States.

With Veeam, Imperial Tobacco Australia is meeting and exceeding RPOs and RTOs.

Backup is so fast with Veeam that the company is backing up more frequently—everyday rather than only weekdays—giving the IT team more recovery point options to meets RPOs. The company meets and exceeds RTOs with Veeam’s Instant VM Recovery®, which starts a failed VM from a backup in minutes. In the future, Imperial Tobacco Australia will use Veeam to replicate VMs from its data centre to a disaster recovery (DR) site, giving the company copies of every VM in a ready-to-start state. Veeam replication provides near-continuous data protection (near-CDP) for the very best RPO and RTO values.

To verify the recoverability of every backup every time, Imperial Tobacco Australia will use Veeam’s SureBackup®, which automatically tests backups by running them in an isolated Virtual Lab. Before Veeam, testing the recoverability of a backup with the legacy backup tool couldn’t be completed in a reasonable timeframe on even a small subset of backups. With SureBackup, verifying the recoverability of backups can be automated as part of the backup process and takes only the time required to power on the VMs.

To quickly restore individual items in Microsoft Exchange, the company will use Veeam Explorer™ for Microsoft Exchange, which provides instant visibility into Exchange backups for quick recovery of emails, notes, contacts, etc. With the legacy tool, restoring Exchange items took up to 30 minutes. With Veeam, it takes only two to three minutes.

“Our success in IT begins and ends with reliability, which is where Veeam shines,” Monaghan said.

The Results

Backup and recovery are fast, easy and reliable
Compared to the legacy backup tool used by Imperial Tobacco Australia, backup with Veeam Backup & Replication is 82% faster and recovery is 75% faster. Veeam is so easy to use and reliable that the IT team spends seconds verifying backups rather than hours.

RPOs and RTOs are effortless to meet and exceed
With Veeam Backup & Replication, Imperial Tobacco Australia meets and exceeds RPOs and RTOs through fast, frequent backup and instant recovery. “Veeam gives us 100% confidence that our VMs backed up successfully and are recoverable,” Monaghan said.

Application items are discovered and recovered quickly
With Veeam Explorer for Microsoft Exchange, there’s no need to provision storage or restore entire mailbox stores. Instead, Imperial Tobacco Australia chooses the Exchange VMs and restore points, and Veeam Explorer presents the contents of those mailbox stores for browsing, searching and export.

Imperial Tobacco Australia
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Imperial Tobacco is a leading international tobacco company that sells its products in more than 160 countries. Imperial Tobacco employs 36,000 people and operates 46 manufacturing sites worldwide.


Backup and recovery were unreliable with the legacy backup tool; therefore, RPOs and RTOs could not be met.


  • Backup and recovery are fast, easy and reliable
  • RPOs and RTOs are effortless to meet and exceed
  • Application items are discovered and recovered quickly
Imperial Tobacco Australia
Please rate how helpful this article was to you:
4.8 out of 5 based on 8 ratings
Thank you for helping us improve!
An error occurred during voting. Please try again later.