Part 3 – Conclusion
I was very pleased with performance and usability of the Exagrid appliance. Landing zone and integrated Veeam datamover are two additional convincing aspects.
For a midrange model, list prices are about 1,000 € per TB raw capacity. A bit more for entry models and a bit less for higher models. That may sound more expensive than a clssical entry level storage behind a Windows/Linux server or a server with lots of local disks. But you have to take into account the massive dedupe/compression ratio an Exagrid appliance offers. The ability to dehydrate backup data down to 20% or less (we had values from 15% down to 10%) offers a lot of cost saving by buying less raw capacity.
ReFS as an Alternative?
Building a backup repository with Server 2016, local store and ReFS has capacity saving benefits too, but it’s harder to air-gap a server that is presenting CIFS shares. When running restores from a ReFS volume, there’s a slight performance penalty, because you’ll need to rearrange blocks before you can use them. We’ve seen that, as we’ve used the Exagid as a backup-copy target. Primary storage on ReFS wasn’t able to deliver data fast enough to saturate Exagrids bandwidth. Bottleneck was always source (ReFS).
- High performance backup and restores by using a landings zone with most recent data hydrated and uncompressed.
- Built in Veeam datamover enables Veeam2Veeam communication during backup and restore. Synthetic full backups do not have to leave the box for processing.
- Scalable GRID architecture. Add capacity, compute power, bandwidth and memory as you grow. Easily combine up to 25 different systems and generations to a GRID. No forklift upgrades. Start small buy as you grow.
- Data Security by using FIPS 140-2 compliant Self-Encrypting Drives (SEDs) to always encrypt data at rest with 256-bit AES.