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VMware Backup Solutions: A Direct Comparison

The Business Challenge

Straten Consulting Founder and President Jens Straten is a German-born SAP veteran with more than 16 years of experience. In addition to providing Platinumlevel SAP consulting services, his company is focused on developing SAP solutions for customers. To meet SAP’s demanding hardware requirements, the company decided to implement VMware for virtualization.

“We found VMware to be a suitable solution that enables us to combine our SAP systems onto a single powerful server. At the same time we also needed a viable backup solution to protect our intellectual property,” Jens explained. “Last, but not least, we wanted to be able to recommend our backup solution to our customers.”

Jens and his colleagues decided to test several backup solutions. “Our requirements were straightforward,” he said. “At a minimum, all incremental backups had to complete in a nightly window from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. However, we also wanted the option to run full backups in that timeframe. In addition, we wanted a central solution that would be easy to use and that allowed backup jobs to be executed from an existing server,” he continued. “Reliability was a key factor as well. These machines contain our intellectual property—the SAP software solutions we’ve developed. That’s the core of our business. The ability to recover quickly is critical to our company, so the solution had to be dependable. Finally, we looked at cost. We wanted a robust solution at a reasonable price.”

After some preliminary research, Jens and his team created a list of potential candidates. Following additional research, they narrowed the list to two solutions, one of which was Veeam Backup & Replication.

The Veeam Solution

Jens and his colleagues performed all testing in the same environment: one VMware server with three virtual machines, one iSCSI server, and one Windows server, which ran the backup solution. Each machine used two 1-gigabyte network interface cards with load balancing. The evaluation focused on three main areas: performance, functionality and user interface, and cost.

Both solutions performed full backups at fairly similar speeds, but incremental backups were a di"erent story. “Veeam Backup & Replication completed all incremental backups faster,” Jens explained.

That’s because Veeam Backup & Replication offers full and native support for VMware vSphere, including all new vSphere functionality, such as the ability to leverage ESX(i) 4 changed block tracking for lightening-fast incremental backups. For example, if a virtual machine only had 5 percent changes since the last backup, the incremental backup time would be 20 times faster.

Functionality and user interface
Jens said both solutions installed quickly, but the team noted that the entire Veeam package, including the installer, was overall easier to use. “In addition to a very logical user interface, Veeam has another plus in functionality over the other product: built-in replication,” he said.

Veeam Backup & Replication ffers two products in one: backup and replication—in one interface, at one price. The other vendor offers two separate products that involve separate price points and require separate licenses. “We get everything we need in one solution with Veeam—no need to install multiple programs,” Jens added.

Jens and his team determined that Veeam Backup & Replication provides more value at a lower price. “We’re a small business, so we really appreciate that future releases from Veeam are free as long as the product has an active maintenance contract,” he explained. “In fact, any size business should appreciate an offer like that.”

The Results

Faster incremental backups - When Jens and his colleagues tested Veeam Backup & Replication against another backup product, Veeam outperformed it with regard to incremental backup speed. That’s because Veeam leverages VMware vSphere ESX(i) functionality to provide extremely fast incremental backup speeds.

Two products in one - Veeam’s strategy for recovery of virtual servers is straightforward: backup and replication go hand-in-hand. Therefore, Veeam offers both techniques through one interface, in one product, at one price.

More value at a lower price - Veeam offers the best value in the marketplace. Other vendors charge separately for backup and replication functionality per virtual machine, which quickly becomes very costly.

Protects intellectual property ore value at a lower price - The success of Jens’ business is rooted in the SAP software solutions he and his colleagues have developed and continue to develop. Therefore, the ability to recover quickly is critical to his company. Veeam Backup & Replication provides that dependability.

Straten Consulting
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Founded in 2007 and located in Santa Cruz, California, Straten Consulting is an independent company that helps SAP customers lower costs and increase e#ciency through unique SAP software solutions and services.


Find and implement a backup solution for a VMware environment that provides fast and reliable performance, robust functionality, and good value at a reasonable price


  • Faster incremental backups
  • Two products in one
  • More value at a lower price
  • Protects intellectual property
Straten Consulting
Please rate how helpful this article was to you:
4.5 out of 5 based on 13 ratings
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