The Business Challenge
Thousands of organizations throughout the world use Axceler® solutions to govern their Microsoft SharePoint and IBM Lotus Notes and Domino environments. Protecting Axceler’s IT infrastructure is critical for the company’s product development and day-to-day operations. Nearly the entire infrastructure is virtualized and includes 200 Microsoft Hyper-V virtual machines (VMs).
Axceler’s IT team must be able to backup and recover VMs quickly, easily and reliably. When a failed VM couldn’t be recovered to another host for days, team members looked for a backup and disaster recovery (DR) solution that offered fast and reliable VM recovery. They wanted a solution that was easy to install, set up and use.
“We needed a solid product with a proven track record,” said John Reid, Manager of Information Technology for Axceler. “We decided to look into Veeam® because we had heard good reports about its backup solution.”
The Veeam Solution
Veeam Backup & Replication™ provides fast, flexible and reliable recovery of virtualized applications and data for Microsoft Hyper-V and VMware vSphere. Veeam protects approximately 8 million VMs worldwide, including the VMs at Axceler.
“Veeam’s reputation and functionality made it very easy for me to get purchase approval,” Reid said. “Lots of people in the industry say it’s easy to use, and it’s true. I’m a big fan of Veeam’s GUI because it’s so user-friendly. I didn’t even refer to the documentation during installation—it was that straightforward.”
Veeam Backup & Replication gives Axceler’s IT team exactly what it needs to protect its Hyper-V infrastructure: fast and reliable VM recovery. Veeam’s Instant VM Recovery lets team members recover a VM in minutes, by restarting the VM directly from the backup.
“I never felt comfortable with our previous backup tool,” Reid said. “For example, I was never able to perform a successful VM restore—rather than recovering the whole VM, I had to rebuild the machine and then reload its data. With Veeam, recovering a VM is unbelievably fast and easy.”
Reid said he and his colleagues experienced another significant benefit with Veeam.
“We had spent weeks trying to migrate our VMs from Windows 2008 servers to Windows 2012 servers. Migrating a VM with an 80-gigabyte drive would take four to five hours, and then the migration would fail,” he explained. “We realized we could use Veeam to backup VMs on the Windows 2008 servers and recover them on the Windows 2012 servers. Using Veeam, that same VM with an 80-gigabyte drive took less than 30 minutes to migrate. We saved at least three months of time by using Veeam. That is a huge benefit.”
Reid has noticed another benefit with Veeam: backup is 88% faster than the previous tool. Veeam changed block tracking maintains a list of blocks in the virtual hard disk that have been modified. During backup or replication, Veeam refers to this list rather than perform a scan-and-compare of the entire disk.
“One particular incremental backup job took nearly two hours with the previous tool,” Reid said. “That same job takes about 15 minutes with Veeam.”
With forever-incremental backups and built-in deduplication and compression, Veeam also minimizes network traffic and storage consumption. And by offloading backup processing from hosts and VMs, Veeam minimizes the impact of backup operations on production resources, giving organizations more restore points with reduced overhead.
“We found what we needed in Veeam: a solid product with a proven track record,” Reid said. “We’ve been pleased with Veeam’s support team as well. When we experienced problems with the previous backup tool and contacted the company for support, we received answers to our questions days after the initial contact. Veeam is prompt in getting back to us and easy to work with. They know their products.”
Fast, reliable VM recovery protects virtual environment
With Veeam, Axceler’s IT team can restart a failed VM from a regular backup in minutes. Before Veeam, the team had to rebuild a VM to restore files, which could take days or weeks.
VM migration with Veeam saves months of manpower
Axceler’s IT team used Veeam to migrate 150 VMs to new hardware, saving countless hours. The team backed up VMs and then restored them to the new hardware.
VM backup speed increases by 88%
An incremental backup job that used to take two hours with Axceler’s previous backup tool takes 15 minutes with Veeam. Veeam changed block tracking makes backup much faster.