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Symantec adds NetBackup 5330, doubles 5230 appliance capacity

Symantec's NetBackup 5330 scales to 228 TB, nearly double the maximum capacity of its 5230 appliances.

Symantec rolled out larger integrated appliances running its NetBackup enterprise data protection application today, nearly doubling the capacity available in its previous appliances.

The NetBackup 5330 appliance scales to 228 TB with expansion shelves, compared to a maximum capacity of 148 TB for the NetBackup 5230. The new appliances run NetBackup 7.6, which Symantec launched in January 2014.

Symantec began selling integrated appliances in 2010 as an alternative to using NetBackup with a separate media server and data deduplication disk backup target such as EMC's Data Domain.

Symantec appliances include NetBackup and deduplication and replication software installed on a media server with expansion disk shelves.

Drew Meyer, Symantec's senior director of information management solutions, said the backup appliance rationale is the same as that driving converged infrastructure in other parts of the data center.

"The trend in the industry is go to converged infrastructures in the data center to get processing power, networking and storage capacity in one package," Meyer said. "We've taken that approach and applied it to the backup problem. Our approach is to combine everything."

The NetBackup 5330 scales from 114 TB in a 6U appliance to 229 TB in a 10U box by adding expansion shelves. Symantec has a new OEM partner for the 5330 expansion shelves -- they are rebranded NetApp E-Series storage arrays.

"We're piggybacking on their storage expertise," Meyer said of NetApp.

The appliances support Fibre Channel, Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) and 10 GbE connectivity. Symantec claims the bigger boxes can back up twice as fast and restore three times as fast as the 5220 appliance.

The 5330 will be available in the U.S. in November, and in the rest of the world in early 2015. Pricing begins at $296,295 for 114 TB. Symantec will continue to sell the 5220, which starts with just 4 TB.

Going beyond remote office, midsize companies

Meyer said the 5330 will appeal to larger enterprises, which make up most of NetBackup's installed base.

"People were saying '148 terabytes is nice for a remote office, a midsize company, or for specific applications, but I really want the big mamma jamma to stick in the data center,'" he said.

Symantec still gets most of its NetBackup revenue from software-only sales but moves many of its customers to the appliance as they replace aging media servers and disk backup targets.

Symantec claims it has sold more than 10,000 NetBackup appliances in the four years since it first put the backup app on its hardware. According to IDC, Symantec's backup appliance revenue hit $359 million in 2013, up from $249 million in 2012.

In the second quarter of 2014, Symantec's backup appliance revenue of $108.5 million grew 22% from the same quarter last year, according to IDC. That compares to an 8.5% overall market growth. Still, Symantec remains a distant second to EMC, which gets most of its appliance revenue from Data Domain products.

Gartner analyst Dave Russell said the integrated appliance approach gives Symantec a chance to replace other target appliances, mainly Data Domain.

"By virtue of being the largest backup application and being in the market so long, Symantec has a lot of NetBackup customers with aged media servers in the wild," he said. "Those older boxes may need to be replaced or they need a new or additional media server. Symantec says, 'You have to refresh or buy a new media server anyway, so you might as well buy our appliance.'

"With brand new customers, Symantec will say, 'Now that you're switching backup software, let's look at an appliance.' If they can capture hardware and software and not leave that as an entry point for Data Domain, they will do that."

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