What is our primary use case?
We use this solution to backup our files and virtual machines.
We use this solution to backup information for our customers. We back up our customers' servers and store the information on local networks. This way, if something goes wrong, we can easily recover the information from our backups.
We have 40 machines that we backup with this solution.
What is most valuable?
Its backup capabilities in general are great.
What needs improvement?
My problem with backup software is the following: The main advantage that all of this software strives for is the ability to store data on a proprietary file system. When you look at the backup files stored in Veeam and other solutions, you cannot directly see the real files. Instead, you see a file structure where the backups are stored inside. This means if you lose the configuration of your backup machine, you only have files stored in a kind of file system that you just cannot get data from. I prefer backup solutions that allow me to regularly look at my backup files — to see the actual files.
I prefer a software backup solution that allows me to easily define my origin data, including data files, folders, and virtual machines. On the targets, they are stored exactly how they are. If it's a virtual machine file, I can find the virtual machine file stored somewhere. I cannot find my folders in a file structure that I don't understand what's in it. I understand why many backup solutions have this kind of file structure; however, this means I also have to have a full backup of the recovery system of my definition configurations.
I don't really like the proprietary file system or file structure, I always prefer the most simple functionalities where I can define this server, this file, these folders, backing up for this target, etc. I am not a fan of cloud storage for backups. Otherwise, I have to have another backup solution or my SAS backup cloud. In short, I am making backups of backups of backups. For me, that's a nightmare.
For how long have I used the solution?
I have been using Veeam Backup & Replication for roughly two years.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
Both the scalability and the stability of Veeam Backup & Replication are good.
How are customer service and technical support?
Normally, I never need to contact technical support. I guess I would need to if I were using Azure cloud storage, but I don't use Azure for storing backups. As I said, I don't trust the cloud for backups.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We also use some other solutions, but they are open-source, not commercial solutions. We still use a lot of open-source backup solutions because they actually do what we need. They grab data from one place and they store it where we want without storing it in a special data structure. They store the files exactly as they came from the origin; they go to the target and that's it.
How was the initial setup?
The initial setup is straightforward.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
We don't pay for this solution, our customers do.
What other advice do I have?
One thing that I enjoy with some open-source solutions is that they're normally the fastest to implement.
With open source solutions, if I have a server and I need to backup something into a folder, either an internet folder, a shared folder on the local network, or a local storage folder, I do not have to have these folders open on the origin system. I only open these folders at the time of transmitting the files, and then they are closed automatically. This means I do not have these folders open if I don't need them because it's safer that way to prevent ransomware attacks and so on.
As I said, don't trust the cloud. If you use the cloud, be sure to have a backup of the cloud. Testing is much more preferable on-premises. This on-premise location can be the local office of the company where you are doing it from, and also remote offices. Just don't use a cloud where you don't know where the server is.
On-premises, when I say "cloud", I mean the internet. I can have an office in London, and if I want to back up on-premise, I do it on the local storage. I don't use general clouds like Azure. I have a server where I know where it is in some location and I remotely back up into that server. I don't buy storage on clouds. I'm really not a good customer for that. I don't trust them. They're excellent, they are really what people say are the future, but I have experienced too many disruptions on clouds. If I go into a software solution where I have to move the cloud, this obligates me to also have a solution to backup the cloud. I don't want to have these two solutions going from the office to the cloud and then also backing up the cloud — it's a nightmare.
Overall, on a scale from one to ten, I would give this solution a rating of eight.
Which deployment model are you using for this solution?