What is our primary use case?
We handle backup recovery and disaster recovery, using the air replication. We also use it to protect virtual environments - not just the physical servers - in order to protect all of our databases.
The solution also has appliances, making it an all-in-one solution. It offers general business continuity and disaster recovery for the industry. Basically, it's just utilizing all the functionality, within an appliance.
What is most valuable?
It's a good solution. It's pretty stable.
The solution is cheaper than competitors, like, for example, Commvault.
What needs improvement?
There's something about the database recovery that I would like to have improved. The solution doesn't deal with end-to-end recovery, for example, the way Oracle does. There is some involvement with the DBA, that you would need to actually complete the recovery.
The usability of the solution isn't the best.
Most other similar solutions support a wide range of storage of aides. This solution doesn't really, at least not to the same extent. This should be improved.
For how long have I used the solution?
I've been using the solution from version 6.0 to the most recent edition.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
The solution is pretty stable. I've never seen an environment really fall over.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
I did a project for a London Council where I had to expand the solution. I can't remember the exact details, but it was quite scalable and I was able to increase the actual capacity of the appliances.
How are customer service and technical support?
When I worked at Veritas I was technical support, so I know their processes quite well. I don't know if they've changed much since I've been there, however, I've worked with most of the people on the team.
If I was a customer, and I hadn't had any previous experience or had any dealings with technical support from Veritas, I might not think they are very good, and their help can be a bit drawn out because they have to do a plan of action.
If you call up because you have an issue, when you're applying for assistance, before they start working on any issue, you have to send over the log files, and the log files get analyzed. Then technical support will call you back. They might do a WebEx, or they might have a solution that you can read, and try to follow to fix the issue for yourself. In most cases, they'll just send you a document and leave it with you to go over and fix the issue by following the documentation.
Those that have been with Veritas for long time, the more senior ones, they don't bother with that. They'll just do a WebEx straight away. Which option you get depends on if you're lucky from a customer's point of view, and who you're dealing with.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We are partners with Veritas and Commvault, and a number of other software vendors, so we use many solutions, depending on the project or client.
I really don't like Veritas solution. I'm more of a Commvault person. I prefer Commvault to any other backup solutions.
From my point of view, Commvault is not as modular as NetBackup.
We use Commvault and find that in comparison, it's quite steady. It's mainly built for a Windows environment, but it does limited support on other operating systems. It's a tighter package than this solution. It's easier to understand and to analyze log files. It's easier to understand the process flows, between your mass server, media server and the client for any APIs that are in use. Everything's better, in my opinion, on Commvault.
How was the initial setup?
The solution's initial setup was straightforward. I designed the setup, so I was following that particular design. It wasn't like a random setup, where I just sat in front of it and had a go in a way that was like trial and error. I was following a formula design, that was signed off by the architects and signed off by the directors and whatnot. It was pretty simple.
What about the implementation team?
Myself and my business partner handled the implementation. Both of us came from Veritas, and it was a contract for the council. I started it, and I realized there was quite a lot of load, so I requested my business partner's assistance as well. Both of us implemented the backup and recovery solution, for Suffolk and Brent Council.
What other advice do I have?
Other people will prefer this solution because they're used to it. However, from my point of view, you have more breaks, more failures on it than you will with Commvault.
This solution was the market leader at one point. I don't know if they still are. I haven't been keeping up to date. There are more solutions on the market now, from what I'm seeing. The environments that are being protected are changing as well. Everything is more geared towards the cloud.
My advice to anyone who wants to purchase this solution or any other solution is to actually know the environment, what to protect, and what they're trying to achieve. You don't have to get the most expensive thing out there if you just want to do simple things.
Most of the solutions do the same thing and it won't fall over. They're all pretty stable.
I'd rate the solution seven out of ten.
Which deployment model are you using for this solution?