A major update to Veeam's flagship data protection software released Wednesday includes a highly anticipated feature that improves recovery points for mission-critical workloads.
Veeam Backup & Replication v11 features continuous data protection (CDP), a capability that has been on the vendor's roadmap for a few years. Improved ransomware protection and backup for Mac devices are also among the more than 200 new features and enhancements in the product.
Veeam platform goes to 11
Continuous data protection brings Veeam's recovery point objectives down to seconds. Veeam previously had near-CDP, which provided recovery point objectives measured in minutes.
The CDP in Veeam Backup & Replication v11 is for tier 1 VMware workloads. Users can recover back to a specific point in time.
"Clearly it gives you the best possible recovery scenarios," said Danny Allan, Veeam's CTO and senior vice president for product strategy.
The feature uses VMware vSphere APIs for I/O Filtering, Allan said. Veeam designed, tested and optimized the CDP for massive scale, he said.
While the market for CDP is becoming crowded, it's clear that Veeam wanted to get the technology right, according to Krista Macomber, senior analyst at Evaluator Group.
"We're seeing a trend towards backup, operational recovery and CDP capabilities being included within the same solution, but still some vendors require an additional software license to be purchased, deployed and managed," Macomber said. Veeam's functionality is included in its Backup & Replication through the Veeam Universal License.
Zerto, Dell EMC and Veritas are among the vendors that offer continuous data protection.
"Veeam's CDP offers what appears to be affordable business continuity for critical VMs -- especially for existing Veeam customers," Macomber said.
Allan said he couldn't comment on other potential workloads that Veeam's CDP could cover in the future.
"A feature like this is intended for the most mission-critical pieces of the environment -- starting with VMware VMs makes sense," Macomber said.
Veeam Backup & Replication v11 also includes a new ransomware safety feature that hardens Linux repositories. Users can check a box and Linux repositories for backups become immutable, which prevents malicious encryption and deletion.
The downside of immutability is it increases storage costs, so scheduling is an important piece. Veeam takes care of that management element, Allan said.
This feature brings immutability on premises, which is a solid option to go with cloud support, Macomber said.
In addition, Veeam Backup & Replication v11 features native support for Amazon S3 Glacier and Microsoft Azure Blob Storage, including their archive tiers; instant recovery for Microsoft SQL, Oracle databases and NAS file shares; and the new Veeam Agent for Mac, a popular request from customers.
Version 10 of Veeam Backup & Replication, released last February, included enhanced NAS backup, another longtime roadmap item, like CDP. That version has more than 650,000 downloads.
Veeam Backup & Replication is part of Veeam's Availability Suite platform, which also includes the Veeam One monitoring and reporting tool.
Cloud, containers in focus for 2021
In other Veeam news, the vendor's Backup for Google Cloud Platform became generally available earlier this month.
Since late 2019, Veeam has also released three versions of Backup for AWS and two versions of Backup for Microsoft Azure. Starting with the AWS support, Veeam launched its backup products for the hyperscalers in order of customer request, Allan said.
Studies show that many organizations use multiple clouds. Those cloud workloads need sufficient data protection.
The Veeam products are native to their given cloud providers. The first version is a standalone product that features a light integration with Veeam Backup & Replication, while the second version is fully integrated, Allan said.
Veeam Backup for Google Cloud Platform is available in the Google Cloud Marketplace.
Also in February, Veeam announced that 2020 was its second consecutive year of bookings over $1 billion. The vendor reported a 22% year-over-year increase in annual recurring revenue.
Veeam claims more than 400,000 customers. The vendor's annual VeeamON user conference is again virtual this year, scheduled for May 25-26. Veeam plans product announcements, customer involvement and interactivity for the show, Allan said.
The cloud, security and Kubernetes are three major focus areas this year for Veeam.
In September 2020, Veeam acquired Kasten, a Kubernetes backup and disaster recovery provider. Allan said he expects the integration between Kasten and the Veeam Availability Suite to launch in 2021.
Keeping up with the cloud and container markets is key, according to Evaluator Group's Macomber.
"Veeam is teed up well in the world of containers with Kasten, and it continues to move actively in terms of being able to protect SaaS and IaaS workloads," Macomber said. "Continuing to lean on that gas pedal and build its capabilities and brand awareness outside of VMs into these areas will be very important."