As I write about various technologies and products, you will find that data protection will be a common theme. In my experience this is still an area that creates stress and anxiety for the people tasked with protecting the intellectual property of a company. If the person fails at this then the company will also possibly fail beyond recovery.
So…now that we have the drama out of the way, if you haven’t heard about it before now, I’d like to introduce you to Nakivo.
Nakivo on the surface is nothing new or cutting edge. Simply put it’s a backup solution for virtual environments. But you say “Rik, we already have a ton of those on the market today!”, which is of course true. Data protection has many (too many?) options today and in my opinion, much feature parity. However, Nakivo has a couple of advantages worth mentioning.
Let’s start with this caveat: Nakivo, as with several other data protection products, is likely not an enterprise play. Yes, they have some enterprise customers but since they limit their capability to virtual-only environments, an enterprise looking for a single-pane solution will likely turn their nose up at Nakivo as they would with other well-known products.
So my first observation when installing Nakivo is that it’s nearly a 1-click install. I mean it doesn’t get any easier so if you are somewhat technically challenged then this is a big plus but for the rest of us this is still a bonus. Also noteworthy is that Nakivo installs its own database and does not need a separate install for that. Not necessarily a differentiator but some products require a separate SQL instance, which requires more time and possibly money so another plus in favor of Nakivo.
Once I completed the installation I found Nakivo a snap to integrate with my vSphere environment. Just give it the info for vCenter (or Hyper-V) and it discovers all the VMs quickly. All the other tasks normally associated with virtual backups are similarly easy to navigate so I won’t go into those, especially if you are already familiar with products like Veeam, etc. The backup repository can be a variety of targets as well, such as local disk or network share so again…nothing cool and exciting.
The other features include offsite backup data and VM replication, WAN optimization/throttling, encryption, global dedupe and compression, instant object/file recovery, application awareness, multi-tenancy and global search. There too many features to list here so I suggest you go to Nakivo’s website to see the entire list.
One of the things I like best about Nakivo is their AWS cloud connectivity. With these features local data can be backed up locally and copied to the cloud, backed up directly to the cloud and even back up whatever AWS VM instances you might have running up there. I don’t believe you can restore VMs back into AWS EC2 but you are able to view the contents of the backup data stored in AWS and only recover what you need so you won’t have to pull down the entire VM from AWS just to recover a single file that may have been lost.
If I had to sum up Nakivo’s real advantage, however, it would be price. Now I’m not cheap by nature as I believe in quality and have proven time and again that I am willing to pay for it. However, Nakivo delivers that quality without the high price tag that other solutions demand. The feature list is extensive and considering that the highest license level (Enterprise) is still half the price of Nakivo’s competitors, it should be worthy of consideration for any pilot in my opinion.
Bottom line: I like Nakivo. It started out years ago as a very basic product and has grown up to play with the big boys. It is as easy as it gets to deploy and so far for me has been rock solid. In fact I like it so much I am going to install it at my wife’s small company. Believe me when I say that I put nothing in their environment that I have any doubts about because the danger to me personally if things go sideways is way too much of a risk. 🙂