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DCIG 2012 Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide Press Release

By September 5, 2012Offline with DCIG

Growing Complexity of IT Infrastructures Highlight Value of Dedicated Backup Appliances to Handle Key Data Protection Functions

Note: This is the text of the press release as published on the morning of Sept. 5, 2012, announcing the availability of the DCIG 2012 Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide. To read the press release in its entirety, please follow this link.

As the move to consolidate and virtualize IT infrastructures
continues, the anticipated benefit that “less” promises is not always
the case. In fact, as DCIG research continues to uncover, the need for
solutions like dedicated appliances to offload growing complexities is
increasing. That is true, especially with dedicated appliances for
critical data protection processes, and in particular, to help with
backup. Backup appliances that combine server and storage hardware with
backup software continue to appeal to organizations as cost-efficient,
“set and forget” solutions.

As noted in DCIG’s inaugural 2012 Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide, as
organizations look to reap the benefits of consolidation and
virtualization, data protection continues to be one of the most
difficult aspects to manage. Fewer organizations rely solely on
dedicated IT support for backup, and IT staff is being asked to add
backup to the myriad of additional applications they currently handle.

“It really is a Catch-22. In order to recognize the benefits that key
consolidation and virtualization hold, you don’t want to increase costs
in other areas to offset those benefits,” said Jerome Wendt, Principal
and Lead Analyst, DCIG, LLC. “The results in our latest Buyer’s Guide
really bear that out, and purpose built backup appliances have a lot to
offer. As with all of our Buyer’s Guides, we provide detailed and
extensive objective analysis of commercially available solutions within a
particular technology category. The research speaks for itself, and I
know these results will help end users shortlist the right solution for
their data protection and backup needs.”

DCIG Buyer’s Guides are designed to help in the identification of
appropriate solutions and be used as an aid in coming up with a list of
competitive products that have comparable features that may meet an end
users’ specific needs. DCIG firmly believes that end users supplement
the selection of a Buyer’s Guide product with in-house testing to ensure
a solution best meets an IT organization’s particular business
processes.

For the DCIG 2012 Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide, DCIG looked at more
than 80 key features of more than 60 Backup Software products from more
than 13 of the leading Backup software products providers, and then
created a survey, which was shared with each provider included in the
Buyer’s Guide. To ensure the information provided in the Buyer’s Guide
was accurate and up-to-date, DCIG provided each vendor with a copy of
their respective data sheets without the scores or rankings to validate
what features their backup solution supported.

After the surveys and data sheets were completed and returned, each
vendor’s responses and updates were checked against publicly available
data. Features were then weighted, scored and ranked either
“Enterprise,” “Recommended,” “Excellent,” “Good,” and “Basic.” The
features were then compiled into individual product data sheets that
reflect how each product supports these features.

“What makes backup appliances so attractive is many utilize a number
of key storage technologies, with a growing number of them natively
supporting deduplication, server virtualization and cloud connectivity,”
added Wendt. “Additionally, the backup appliances that DCIG researched
have little to no dependencies on any pre-existing backup and recovery
processes. This makes them extremely attractive for IT staff as there is
no need for any other backup software or hardware to make them work.”

For inclusion in the DCIG 2012 Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide, each solution must have met the following criteria:

  •     Be available as a physical appliance that includes backup software as a combined bundle under one SKU (Stock-keeping Unit)
  •     Be able to store data on premise on Direct-attached Storage
    (DAS), Network-attached Storage (NAS) or Storage Area Network
    (SAN)-attached storage
  •     Have sufficient information available to DCIG to make meaningful decisions
  •     Be available and shipping as of July 1, 2012

The DCIG 2012 Backup Appliance ten products include (in alphabetical
order): RackTop EBR-FE, Symantec NetBackup 5220 Backup Appliance,
Symantec Backup Exec 3600 Appliance, STORServer Enterprise Backup
Appliance 800, 1100, 2100 and 3100, and Unitrends Recovery-822, 823 and
833.

Of the evaluated Backup Appliance products, DCIG introduced a new
ranking of “Enterprise” in addition to its usually high mark of
“Recommended,” to highlight how one product clearly stood out above and
beyond other competitive offerings. STORServer EBA 3100 achieved the
mark of Enterprise by distinguishing itself from other models. Products
also noted as Recommended include: Symantec NetBackup 5220 Backup
Appliance, STORServer EBA 2100, 1100 and 800. Highlights of the
“Enterprise” ranking included:

  •     Support for Active-Active controllers
  •     Large amounts of storage capacity
  •     Broadest choice of networking interfaces
  •     Highest levels of redundancy

“To garner four of the top five positions in such a prestigious
analysis of backup appliances on the market today stands as the highest
compliment of our efforts in providing best-in-class appliances,” said
John Pearring, manager of sales and marketing for STORServer. “We are
thrilled by the conclusions of DCIG’s comprehensive study.”

Disclosure and Methodology

DCIG identified 20 plus companies that provide Backup Appliance
products. Each provider was given the opportunity to complete a survey
that examined how its solution delivered on the inclusion criteria. In
every case every vendor had the opportunity to review and respond to the
survey and the information regarding their product displayed on the
data sheets included in this Buyer’s Guide.

DCIG also spoke to a number of end-users to get a sense of how they
would weight their needs in various areas. DCIG then evaluated the
vendors’ capabilities by applying weighting indicated from our
conversations with these end-users. No vendors, whether clients or not,
were afforded preferential treatment in the Buyer’s Guide. All research
was based upon information provided directly by vendors, research and
analysis by DCIG and other publicly available information.

Availability

The DCIG 2012 Backup Appliance Buyer’s Guide is available
immediately and may be downloaded for no charge with registration at the
following link:

http://backupapplianceguide.com

Resources:

DCIG Blog:

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Jerome M. Wendt

About Jerome M. Wendt

President & Lead Analyst of DCIG, Inc. Jerome Wendt is the President and Lead Analyst of DCIG Inc., an independent storage analyst and consulting firm. Mr. Wendt founded the company in September 2006.

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