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Zetta improves DataProtect with WAN optimization

Zetta adds WAN optimization to its DataProtect enterprise cloud backup and disaster recovery software.

Zetta enhanced its enterprise cloud backup and disaster recovery software today, which the company said will speed data movement across the WAN while broadening the on-premises backup capability for DataProtect 4.

DataProtect installs as an agent on client systems and synchronizes data that is stored locally and inside a cloud that Zetta maintains at Equinix colocation sites on both U.S. coasts. It is used for cloud backup as well as disaster recovery. Local backup is offered for hybrid cloud implementations.

Zetta built WAN optimization into its DataProtect 4, adding dynamic TCP window sizing to automatically adjust to different data sets. The vendor claims DataProtect 4 moves data across the WAN 200% faster than the previous version, enabling it to recover terabytes of data in less than 24 hours.

The new version of DataProtect can back up all data sets locally. Zetta first added local backups for large databases (up to around 500 GB) last year. Local backups allow customers to use on-premises storage for the most recent copy of a file.

DataProtect also has a new user interface with a wizard-driven setup process and a portal for managing service provider partners. A plug-in for NetApp filers that Zetta announced late last year is now generally available.

Pricing for DataProtect 4 starts at $225 per month for unlimited backup and recovery software, 500 GB of enterprise cloud storage and 24-hour support.

Zetta also closed an $8 million Series B funding round led by Industry Ventures that brings its total funding to $39.5 million.

Zetta began in 2009 with designs on providing cloud network-attached storage for enterprises. It morphed into cloud data protection, but kept its underlying technology. Gary Sevounts, Zetta's vice president of marketing, said the company has 400 customers and they all use the cloud.

"The challenge is with the speed of backups," Sevounts said. "We designed a solution that from the get-go was cloud native, and cloud native for business. It was designed to move as little data as necessary, but when data is moved, it's moved significantly faster than even local solutions."

Cloud backup has proven popular among consumers and smaller businesses, but not so much among large enterprises. That's partly because enterprises can afford to do their own backups, and their data sets can take a long time to restore from the cloud. But Zetta vice president of products Chris Schin said enterprises are warming to cloud backup, mainly because of performance improvements in moving data.

Schin said Zetta has customers backing up close to 100 TB of data.

"Enterprise cloud backup has finally come of age," Schin said. "Customers are backing up data sets that traditional backup products can no longer keep up with."

Dave Simpson, senior storage analyst for 451 Research, agreed that Zetta is better suited for large enterprises than others offering cloud backup and cloud disaster recovery for businesses, such as Unitrends, Axcient and Datto. He said that is because Zetta started out as an enterprise provider.

"It's all about performance," he said. "The others are doing small backups, gigabytes a day, because that's all they can handle on Internet connections. Zetta is now positioning itself as a backup and recovery vendor, which it didn't in the past. And it's focused on the performance angle."

He suggested that Zetta should spend a chunk of its $8 million funding round on marketing to build brand awareness.

"Most end users haven't heard of them," he said. "Classically, it's an engineering-driven company. The question is, 'Can they do marketing?'"

Sevounts said Zetta will invest in marketing as well as research and development and channel sales. He said the vendor is also planning to add international data centers, but that is still a few years out.

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