Veeam is extending its Backup & Replication software for virtual machines with support for Hyper-V to address the growing number of customers using Microsoft- and VMware-based virtual infrastructure.
The current version of Veeam Backup & Replication supports only VMware's platform. Version 6, due for release in the fourth quarter of 2011, adds support for Hyper-V, enabling administrators to back up Microsoft and VMware virtual machines from a single console, the firm said.
"We believe we're the number one backup solution for VMware, and now we're bringing the same benefits to Hyper-V," said Veeam chief executive Ratmir Timashev.
One of these benefits is support for changed block tracking, which was introduced in Backup & Replication 4.0 around 18 months ago.
This makes incremental backups more efficient by tracking changes inside a virtual machine image, allowing Veeam to offer near-continuous data protection capability.
Changed block tracking is provided by the vStorage API of VMware's vSphere platform, but Hyper-V does not have this, so Veeam is using a driver that tracks changes to VHD images in order to have the same functionality across both platforms.
Veeam decided to add Hyper-V support because of growing adoption of Microsoft's virtualisation product among its customers, according to Timashev.
"Hyper-V is free with Windows Server, so Microsoft owns the smaller end of the market. For medium and large customers, these guys aren't in a hurry to switch from VMware, but they are starting to use Hyper-V for non-mission-critical workloads," he explained.
In fact, Timashev said that Hyper-V is fast becoming a viable alternative to VMware, as Microsoft continues to add features that enterprises require, such as live migration of virtual machines and memory overcommit.
Furthermore, data recovery, rather than consolidation, is becoming the chief reason for implementing virtualisation, he claimed.
As well as supporting Hyper-V in Backup & Replication, Veeam provides a way for customers to manage VMware and Hyper-V infrastructure from Microsoft's System Center console using its nworks Management Pack for VMware.
Veeam's Backup & Replication uses an image-based approach to backing up virtual machines and the applications they contain, which makes for speedier backup and recovery than traditional methods, according to the firm. It also does away with the need for backup agents to be installed on each virtual machine.
Backup & Replication also includes de-duplication and compression at no extra cost, minimising the storage and network bandwidth needed for backups.
Veeam said it has yet to decide on the licensing model for Backup & Replication 6. The firm currently follows VMware in licensing based on the number of CPU sockets, whereas Microsoft licensing is per instance of the server OS.
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