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Windows Server 2012 Replication

Veeam LogoPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 7:12 am
by smile_dav
This is not a techincal issue thread, just wanted to share some thoughts on the upcoming release on Windows Server 8 and how it might affect Veeam.

I have just attended Microsoft Techdays 2012 and to be honest, it has been a real eye opener on many fronts.
First, i want to mention is the embedded replication for VMs running on Hyper-V. Microsoft seems to have gone for it and will offer replication for not only Windows VMs, but also Linux and UNIX VMs, all included in the license. NO EXTRA COSTS!!! The replication part pretty much matches Veeam's replication (incremental with retention periods, replica mapping, VSS etc) and in some parts even more i.e. support re-ip for linux VMs.
Although their smallest replication window is 1 hour, lack of deduplication and the performance, from a massive Veeam fan, I just wonder how Veeam can top this?

On the backup side, the new DPM included in SCOM has been a big improvement, but still no match for Veeam in terms of speed, backup verification and the lack of Application Item Recovery (except for Sharepoint).

This is truely a test for Veeam as it seems like Microsoft is REALLY trying to push their virtual platform and they are matching and bettering what VMware can provide, they also want to expand that into areas like DR. From a massive Veeam fan, i just hope you guys come up with something great and push the boundaries a little bit!

Re: Windows Server 8

Veeam LogoPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 4:05 pm
by Gostev
We are truly excited about Windows Server 8, because the more users are using Hyper-V, the more market we have to sell our tools too.

As far as some features being included in hypervisors for free, that is not a concern to us. For example, free VMware Data Recovery released 2 years did not affect us at all, despite most of our partners and users also thought that "the sky is falling on Veeam" after the product was announced. Likewise, Hyper-V replication is as good as any free product - it has its limited use, but you would not rely on it beyond small Hyper-V deployments. As always, everything may look great on paper, but the devil is in details.

Even without deep testing, I have already compiled quite a long list of its implications comparing to our replication. To give you just one example: enabling Hyper-V replication on a VM doubles its write I/O (as every changed block has to be written to two places now, actual VHD and replica journal). Of course, this is totally acceptable if you only have a few VMs in your production, and are replicating may be 1 or 2 of those. Now, imaging the performance impact doubling your write I/O on multiple VMs (impact on both VMs performance, and your production storage performance). Do you think many people will choose to go with something that, for certain workloads, would require essentially doubling IOPS capability of your storage infrastructure (to keep the same SLA) when replicating majority of your VMs? While the actual replication may be free, what about the cost of storage upgrade?

Also, on an unrelated note - you may not know this, but most the core of Veeam management team comes from Aelita software (2 time Microsoft ISV Partner of the Year, acquired by Quest Software in 2004). Aelita's business was all about building paid alternatives to free Windows management tools provided by Microsoft (migration, backup, etc). It has been an extremely successful business, despite pretty much EVERY tool we produced had a free alternative from Microsoft. Does it prove that we know what we are doing as an ISV? :wink:

And, of course, you are spot on that we at Veeam are determined to keep pushing the envelope. As I mentioned, our last year's v6 release already has a long list of major advantages over yet unreleased Hyper-V replica. But, by the time Windows Server 8 is actually available, we will have v7 :D

Re: Windows Server 8

Veeam LogoPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:26 am
by smile_dav
Thank you Gostev for the reply.

Yes, I've read some articles and interviews regarding the Veeam team and I know most of you guys are from Aelita. Sorry to say that whatever Quest buys, it never seem to flourish.
I remember VMware Data Recovery being released, but it was much less grand than Hyper-V, who are telling people it's one of their selling points. Just to add, many people I've talked to in the past couple of weeks are starting to think about Hyper-V now.
I have also seen Hyper-V replication in action, it didn't seem to be fast, but it had the basic blocks of what people need, i.e. as Microsoft puts it "It just works" and it's completely free. However, I do see your point regarding the less expensive storage models you can use with Veeam. I will be deploying the developer's version for further testing.

I can't wait till version 7, but I hope this time there would be less issues, keep up the good work guys!

Re: Windows Server 8

Veeam LogoPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:46 am
by Gostev
smile_dav wrote:I can't wait till version 7, but I hope this time there would be less issues, keep up the good work guys!

I think v6 had quite reasonable amount of issues considering such a major architecture shift. But yes, the fact that we will not have to do something like this again gives me warm and fuzzy feeling. The current architecture should allows us to scale indefinitely...