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While data management typically existed separate from backup and protection products, customers are starting to look for a more unified way to manage and protect data.
Keeping up with multiple tools to manage data that resides anywhere from virtual machines to the cloud can be taxing on time and resources. In the past, vendors have tried to address this need with limited success, but recently there has been a shift in the market. Now, many vendors are touting products as incorporating data protection and management.
Be vigilant about confirming exactly what's offered in a data protection and management product. Just because a vendor says it provides both capabilities doesn't mean the product is comprehensive enough for your needs. One vendor's definition of data management is likely different from others.
Be specific in your assessments. While a data protection vendor may claim that it provides analytics or compliance or copy data management, it doesn't mean that those features are as strong as products specializing in those areas. Make sure you're reading customer reviews and testing the product yourself.
It's especially important to be careful with data protection and management products, because there are risks in merging secondary data tasks like backup with production elements. Something that happens in the backup platform shouldn't affect the production system.
It's an exciting time in the marketplace, as data protection vendors are not sitting still. Converging data protection and management is one of the hottest trends, but it's essential for users to tread carefully while vendors take on new responsibilities in these two critical areas.