At Microsoft TechEd in Orlando,Windows IT Pro contributing editor Michael Dragone and I spoke with Abdul Rasheed of Symantec about his company’s powerful and flexible NetBackup 5220 appliance. In a crowded field of competitors in the purpose-built backup appliance market, NetBackup stands out as a noteworthy contender, thanks in large part to its all-in-one enterprise backup and deduplication capabilities, which are surprisingly flexible and easy to use. But where this appliance really shines is in its virtualization capabilities.

The Intel-designed appliance gives you enterprise backup and deduplication functionality that you can install in minutes, with expandable storage starting at 4TB and deduplication for physical and virtual systems. Only Symantec appliances deduplicate on both the client and target. Equipped with V-Ray technology, they provide unique visibility into virtual environments that speeds recovery and reduces storage costs. Content-aware deduplication reduces the size of backups by up to 50 times and network bandwidth utilization by up to 99 percent, so you can back up and replicate faster. Pay once for deduplication and replicate securely to any number of targets.

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Symantec's team ready to discuss the NetBackup 5220 backup appliance

I was particularly impressed with the new V-Ray technology, which breaks down virtual versus physical silos and delivers simple yet comprehensive backup and recovery. This unification allows for more standardization and consistent policies, and reduced duplication of effort, eliminating redundant storage pools and lowering licensing, training, and operational costs.

The NetBackup 5220 is a 2U appliance with deduplication storage starting at 4TB, which is ideal for remote offices. The appliance can also be deployed as a media server in data centers to stream backups to a NetBackup 5000 series global deduplication pool via Fibre Channel or Ethernet. With an optional Symantec Storage Shelf, the deduplication capacity of the appliance itself can be expanded up to 32TB.

The backups in NetBackup 5220 deduplication storage pool can be replicated to other compatible targets. The target devices could be in the same NetBackup domain (optimized duplication) or in a different NetBackup domain (Auto Image Replication). In both use cases, replication is bandwidth-optimized; the source will not send data segments that are already present in target deduplication pool, thereby minimizing the bandwidth usage between sites.