2015 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup Software and Integrated Appliances – Gartner

EMC, CommVault, IBM and Symantec leaders, Veeam and Actifio visionaries
This is a Press Release edited by on 2015.06.24

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Below is the 2015 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup Software and Integrated Appliances (15 June 2015 ID:G00266742) written by analyst

Market Definition/Description
This Magic Quadrant describes the evolution of enterprise backup, which incorporates new products, solutions and techniques for protecting, backing up and recovering physical server and virtual server files, applications, system images, and endpoint devices. These backup products provide features such as traditional backup to tape, backup to random-access media (disk, flash, etc.) or devices that emulate the previous backup targets (e.g., VTL [VTL]), data reduction (compression, deduplication, single instancing, etc.), snapshot, heterogeneous replication and CDP (CDP). These solutions may be provided as software only, or as an integrated appliance that contains all of or substantial components of the backup application, such as the master server or a media server (a component beyond an agent, or preparsing code that is used for dedicated backup target devices). Additionally, integration and exploitation of public cloud storage as part of the on-premises backup methodology for a disk-to-disk-to-cloud (D2D2C) option is becoming important to some organizations.

Organizations are increasingly making their backup product selection from vendors that offer expanded protection capabilities and techniques in addition to traditional backup software, as organizations have come to understand the value of backing up critical data via multiple methods, techniques and destinations.

As the backup/recovery software and integrated appliance market comprises dozens, if not hundreds, of vendors, this report narrows it down to those that have strong presence worldwide in the upper-end midmarket and large-enterprise environments. Gartner defines the upper-end midmarket as being 500 to 999 employees and the large enterprise as being 1,000 employees or greater. It also excludes backup software for a homogeneous environment such as native tools from Microsoft or VMware for their own specific platforms, as many midsize and large customers prefer a single, scalable backup product for their entire environment.

The emphasis of this Magic Quadrant is on the backup and recovery software capability (i.e., the large-enterprise backup application(s)). However, for vendors that meet the inclusion criteria below (weighted heavily toward the backup application), their entire backup/recovery software and the branded hardware portfolio that offers an integrated backup appliance will be evaluated. Note that a Magic Quadrant is not product-specific, but rather represents the vendor's overall position in the enterprise backup/recovery software and integrated appliance market and individual products in a vendor's recovery portfolio can vary in terms of capabilities, support, etc. This means that vendors that do not possess a heterogeneous backup application, do not have significant worldwide presence and only deliver disk-based target appliances are not eligible for inclusion in this Magic Quadrant. Note that Gartner has the Magic Quadrant for Deduplication Backup Target Appliances to focus on backup target devices.

The same is true with the report's emphasis on disk-based backup and server backup, although tape backup features, SaaS application and endpoint backup will be factored into the comprehensiveness of the vendor's data protection portfolio and capabilities.

Gartner states that by 2016, 20% of organizations, up from 12% today, will employ only snapshot and replication techniques, abandoning traditional backup/recovery for the majority of their data; by 2018 50% of organizations will have augmented with additional products or have replaced their current backup application compared to what they employed in 2014; and by 2019, there will be a 60% increase in the number of large enterprises opting to eliminate tape for operational recovery.

This 2015 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup Software and Integrated Appliances is an update to the Magic Quadrant of the same name that was last published in June 2014.

Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup Software and Integrated Appliances
Gartner- 2015 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup Software and Integrated Appliances
(Source: Gartner, June 2015)


Acronis provides solutions for SMBs, and companies with ROBO and departmental backup needs inside enterprise groups. Acronis Backup Service provides cloud-enabled central administration capabilities for distributed locations. The cloud offerings also include Acronis Backup cloud for MSPs to deliver backup services, and Acronis DR Service for cloud-based server failover and off-site resiliency. Backups can be written to up to five different storage targets, including the Acronis Cloud, or via FTP/SFTP to a private cloud. Single-pass imaging allows full or object-level recovery with native support for Exchange, SQL Server and SharePoint, as well as support for other Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS)-aware applications and databases using pre- and postbackup commands. To speed backup performance, source-side deduplication and compression are combined with target-side postprocessing, such as indexing or cataloging. A dynamically generated step-by-step DR plan (DRP document) is emailed as a recovery playbook following the backup.


  • A flexible licensing model, combined with a unified and oft-cited easy-to-use interface, gives businesses an upgrade path to add components to a unified platform as needed.
  • There is complete portability of backup images using the Universal Restore capability (physical-to-physical (P2P), physical-to-virtual (P2V) or virtual-to-virtual (V2V)) and across all Acronis backup solutions, from consumer to full-featured versions.
  • Version-independent intrahypervisor support across six supported hypervisors facilitates long-term flexibility, and allows service-level-based VM) tiering, migration or test/development.


  • Acronis may not be well-suited for very large enterprise deployments due to its support matrix and scalability.
  • The on-premises Acronis Backup Advanced has limited self-service recovery capabilities.
  • NAS support is limited to CIFS/NFS mount points.


Actifio's data protection solution consolidates traditional data protection copy silos, and enables fast data capture and backup via methods such as change block tracking, snapshots, multithreaded block-level incremental-forever processing, and the new integration with change-tracking APIs from NetApp and EMC Isilon. Its native format allows instant mounting by VMs and physical servers for fast recovery. Its global deduplication delivers more usable capacity and WAN efficiency. Beyond backup, Actifio also automates DR and test and development environments with a workflow process for database administrators via virtual clone refreshes. Actifio's offering ranges from physical appliances scaling to 8PB to a virtual appliance (Actifio Sky), which can be run on vSphere, Hyper-V and Amazon Web Services (AWS) compute nodes. In the past year, the vendor introduced Actifio One, a SaaS solution for cloud service providers to deploy in a hybrid cloud deployment model with a self-service portal. It also launched Resiliency Director, which orchestrates compute, network and data at a DR site and validates the results.


  • Actifio's 'golden copy' architecture and instant in-place recovery have resonated well with customers.
  • Users reported excellent customer support experiences.
  • There has been improved TCO due to the elimination of multiple competitive products and a reduced number of storage acquisition.


  • Actifio only supports backup of the most popular OSs, hypervisors, email systems and database applications.
  • While single file restores are now available on Linux, Unix and Windows, single object restores for Exchange and SharePoint require a third-party package.
  • Some customers expressed desires to have better graphical and command line reporting options, such as more details on the appliance's performance and utilization.


In August 2014, Arcserve completed its spinout from CA Technologies as a private company, bringing with it all of CA's open-system recovery offerings. Arcserve has several products in its backup portfolio, but directionally the intent is to merge capabilities from several solutions into Unified Data Protection (UDP), with the features of replication and HA next to be combined. Arcserve offers robust recovery verification, bare-metal restore (BMR), server failover and failback, and a space-saving, block-based incremental backup methodology with client- and target-side deduplication in the UDP product. VMware and Hyper-V are well-supported with a broad range of mostly agentless capabilities. In the last year, a redesigned UI, featuring workflow-based protection, has been added. In February 2015, Arcserve launched the UDP 7000 series appliances, which offer a VM standby option to run a server image from the backup software on the appliance, and announced a mid-2015 intention to deliver a cloud-hosted replication target capability for the appliances. Approaching the one-year mark after the split from CA, sales appear to be rising. Arcserve has the majority of its deployments in Japan and Europe, with plans to better penetrate North America via increased marketing, new functionality and the appliance delivery model.


  • Arcserve offers a broad range of data protection capabilities for a large number of Windows applications, and supports many cloud targets, as well as physical tape.
  • References cite affordability, ease of deployment and ongoing administration as positives.
  • UDP is a major leap forward in capability and integration.


  • Arcserve focuses on the Windows and Linux OS platforms and on VMware and Hyper-V hypervisors, with no or limited Mac and SaaS application protection.
  • Arcserve backup products have been mostly deployed in the midmarket by SMBs and some MSPs (MSPs); therefore, reference checking for new capabilities and applicability to larger environments becomes more important.
  • End-user restore and object-level recovery from SharePoint 2013 are not yet supported.

For almost 30 years, Asigra has designed its backup software for service providers that offer backup as a service - mostly under their own labels - to SMBs and enterprise branch offices. The solution offers agentless backup and recovery of all the main OSs with block-level incremental-forever processing, which is made more WAN-efficient via local and global deduplication and compression. It also has strong capabilities desired by cloud backup providers, such as local caching, multitenancy and customer billing, encryption, a single management console, and the ability to run in a Docker container. Asigra stands out with the breadth of its backup offerings, including CDP, DR, endpoint backup, and SaaS backup for Google Apps, Salesforce and, most recently, Microsoft Office 365. The new v.13 release added hypervisor snapshot-based VM replication, VMware file-level restore, Docker container backup/recovery, remote data wipe for endpoint backup and a redesigned UI. The Backup Lifecycle Management concept provides four tiers of backup as data ages over time, with optional deletion and data destruction certificates. Asigra's capacity-based pricing is based on the deduplicated and compressed storage in the back end, and the vendor is pioneering a recovery-based license model.


  • Asigra is well-adopted by service providers, which have been offering good support.
  • Asigra offers one of the most comprehensive backup and recovery feature sets within a single platform.
  • The low-touch, agentless architecture is available for physical and virtual environments.


  • Asigra's brand awareness is low among Gartner user clients, who also report finding it hard to locate a service provider without contacting the vendor first.
  • Customers should do more diligent reference checks before using some of the advanced functions, such as endpoint, SaaS or snapshot-based backup, as these functions are not deployed as often as the mainline backup capabilities.
  • If purchasing Asigra cloud Backup as a service, know that product versions, enabled capabilities and first-level support experience can vary across service providers.

Barracuda Networks

Barracuda Networks has shipped a large number of integrated backup appliances in just a few years. The vendor is very visible with its portfolio of IT appliances, and many customers purchase solutions across storage, security and application delivery. Barracuda has been rounding out its support for specific backup features, but it predominantly focuses on ease of ordering and delivery (it builds its own appliances), ease of administraton, and offering recovery capabilitiesfor midsize Windows and Linux implementations running Microsoft and Oracle applications and VMware and Hyper-V virtualization. The ability to boot a backup VM on the Barracuda appliance or on the vendor's cloud is offered, and it sends out a replacement appliance, prepopulated with customer data, if needed. Any number of appliances can be centrally managed with aggregated reporting from the Barracuda Cloud. Endpoint protection is offered via its Copy solution, with the ability to restore files and folders from the Barracuda Cloud. While the focus is on addressing the backup needs for the 50- to 1,000-user range, ROBO, departmental and project-based backup deployments in larger enterprises are also seen. Appliances scale down to 500GB, and today the largest solution has an 112TB capacity.


  • Barracuda is a complete end-to-end backup provider of integrated appliances and vendor-owned cloud.
  • Strong customer support is provided, with short wait times and knowledgeable support personnel.
  • Barracuda is a fast-growing vendor for midsize backup requirements; it is especially strong in the education, finance and local government verticals.


  • The vendor lacks support for a broad range of environments and large-scale deployments; NAS NDMP and physical tape are not offered with the Barracuda Backup Server.
  • Mac backup support requires secure shell file system (SSHFS).
  • Currently, no third-party cloud is supported; backup must be to the Barracuda Cloud.


Commvault continues to meet a variety of backup needs with its single platform for data management, which includes comprehensive backup, archiving, reporting and analytics, and search capabilities. Commvault successfully made the jump to being deployed at very large scale, with many multipetabyte installations and by large service providers. In the last year, the vendor has launched four solution sets, including solutions focused on VM backup and endpoint recovery, and a branded integrated appliance. It has responded to two years of pricing and packaging concerns. Looking beyond basic backup, Commvault's Simpana portfolio offers the ability to mine and repurpose backup for test/development, analytics and DR, as well as public cloud integration that offers the same rich set of data services. Commvault was early to broadly support array-based snapshots as part of the overall recovery hierarchy, and Simpana continues to add support for emerging storage providers. Customer support and satisfaction feedback is favorable as Commvault drives into typically larger environments. The vendor's stated near-term vision for further data management and opening up its unified repository for broader use cases should resonate with market interests.


  • Commvault has a single administrative console and reporting/analytics engine for all backup (data center, remote office, SaaS application and endpoint), archiving, file sync and share, search, and data loss prevention functions.
  • Focused solution sets, multiple new Simpana licensing bundles, and new branded and partner-integrated appliances make Commvault appropriate for niche to large heterogeneous backup requirements.
  • Commvault offers the industry's broadest support for integrating with and exploiting storage hardware platform snapshots, directly supporting over two dozen of the top-selling storage arrays.


  • Simpana can be costly at acquisition and for maintenance, especially at scale; look to deploy Simpana bundles other than the all-inclusive Data Protection Enterprise (DPE) package.
  • Large deduplication operations, at 40TB or larger, require the usage of SSDs for the deduplication database to achieve optimal performance.
  • Setup of non-NetApp storage arrays for IntelliSnap can require additional effort.


Dell's backup portfolio includes software and appliances that target small and midsize environments, although it reported that its 2014 deal sizes doubled or even tripled over those in the prior year. In 2014, Dell bundled AppAssure, NetVault and vRanger into the Dell Backup & DR Suite (BDRS), with a new front-end, storage-capacity-based licensing model. BDRS customers can use various backup/recovery methods with different capabilities and scalability for different host environments or SLA requirements. For example, AppAssure offers short RPOs, as frequent as five minutes, and RTOs with near-instant Live Recovery) for the Windows environment; NetVault can backup more heterogeneous and larger host environments, including NAS with strong physical tape backup capabilities; and vRanger can focus on agentless virtual server backup. When sold separately, AppAssure is often deployed via the Dell PowerVault DL integrated appliance. In 2014, Dell also expanded AppAssure's cloud support to include AWS, Azure, Rackspace and OpenStack Swift-based cloud infrastructure. On the downside, despite the BDRS sales bundle, customers have to deal with the limitations of each backup technology within the bundle, such as no tape support for AppAssure.


  • Dell's BDRS, with its associated backup software and appliances, meets the vast majority of the needs of SMBs.
  • For SMBs primarily protecting Windows environments, AppAssure provides advanced backup techniques for short RPOs and RTOs, as well as a simplified tapeless workflow.
  • For midmarket to larger-enterprise organizations with a mix of OS platforms and tape requirements, NetVault continues to be a capable backup solution.


  • Customers planning to use multiple Dell backup applications should be aware that there is no single management console for the BDRS bundle, although the look and feel are similar among the different management tools.
  • AppAsure requires high storage consumption when more-frequent recovery points than daily backup are implemented.
    Storage array snapshot integration and exploitation are not currently offered.


EMC has acquired many backup solutions in past years, including the recent Spanning SaaS backup acquisition. Its enterprise backup software focuses on Avamar and NetWorker, which are often sold together in the Data Protection Suite. EMC highly leverages Data Domain's sales momentum in bundles with those two backup products. In the past year, EMC introduced a new backup product called ProtectPoint, which represents a new backup architecture, allowing EMC's primary storage systems to send backup data directly to Data Domain, bypassing the traditional backup server bottleneck. In addition, Avamar introduced Isilon Fast Incremental, and NetWorker added block-based backup to reduce backup windows. EMC enhanced public cloud support, via the new Avamar Virtual Edition for Microsoft Azure, and CloudBoost, which enables customers to send monthly or yearly backups to the cloud for long-term retention. However, ProtectPoint and Spanning are creating additional challenges for EMC's backup integration and unification initiative, which has been slow to come to fruition. Some progress has been made with the most recent introduction of a unified search engine across Avamar and NetWorker, and ProtectPoint can now be configured from the NetWorker UI and monitored by Data Protection Advisor (DPA).


  • Avamar offers fast backup techniques for centralized large NAS file systems, as well as distributed file shares.
  • Avamar and NetWorker have tight integration with Data Domain, EMC's deduplication backup target appliances.
  • EMC's ProtectPoint offers a much faster database backup alternative to traditional backup for EMC storage array (VMAX3 today) users for supported environments.


  • After years of promising customers, EMC still hasn't unified Avamar and NetWorker, which remain somewhat discrete with separate catalogs, policy engines and management consoles.
  • Easier Avamar upgrades and simpler DPA reporting functions are needed.
  • Avamar doesn't support storage platform snapshots, and NetWorker doesn't index storage platform snapshots, which may result in time-consuming granular restores from snapshots.

FalconStor has been a company in transition for several years, with changes in executive staff, CTOs and overall strategy. However, in the last year, the vendor has stabilized these issues and delivered product proof points on its vision. The long-awaited service-oriented administrative interface has been made available with a revamped reporting engine. In addition to enhancements to the CDP and Optimized Backup & Deduplication (OBD) products, a new rearchitected solution, FreeStor, has been released that is based on horizontal data services and a scale-out architecture, with a Web-based interface. FalconStor was early in the industry to embrace a different backup and recovery paradigm, utilizing its own snapshot and replication techniques (with disk-, partition- or volume-level granularity) to offer backup, HA for failover and failback, and DR orchestration. Recovery is offered via a hierarchy of approaches that include fast-mounting read-only or writeable snapshots, point-in-time disk image rollback, or tertiary replicated copies of data. Long term, FreeStor would seem to be the strategic recovery solution; however, FalconStor says that it will offer the rest of the portfolio for many years into the future for existing customers.


  • FalconStor offers application-aware snapshots and bandwidth-optimized replication for many platforms.
  • Users cite fast recovery via mountable snapshots for applications and file systems.
  • A variety of packaging options are offered - from traditional software, installation as a virtual appliance to branded appliance.


  • With many products in the portfolio, a brand-new strategic solution and the vendor still delivering on past objectives, proper product selection, verification of support matrices and reference checking are prudent.
  • No object-level recovery of virtualized applications is offered, except for SQL Server.
  • There is no readily available self-service recovery.


HP's backup software and service portfolio includes three different technologies: Data Protector for data center server backup, HP LiveVault online backup services, and HP Connected Backup and Connected MX endpoint backup services. Data Protector is a contender for enterprise backup and has solid integration with HP storage, such as StoreOnce and 3PAR, as well as snapshot exploitation of third-party storage arrays. HP also released StoreOnce Recovery Manager Central to nondisruptively snapshot and backup VMware VMs between HP 3PAR and HP StoreOnce. Continuing on its multiphased Adaptive Backup and Recovery (ABR) initiative, HP introduced HP Backup Navigator in 2014, which provides job prioritization, resource forecasting and other analytics for the Data Protector environment. In the past year, Data Protector also added SmartCache as a fast recovery tier for instant access, snapshot plug-ins for third-party arrays, file archiving for lower-tier backup storage and integration with HP's Helion Public cloud as a backup target. For endpoint backup, HP introduced a new product (Connected MX), which has a single agent and back-end repository for both backup and file synchronization and sharing.


  • Data Protector is a single solution with support for a wide range of host environments, and native integration with many enterprise core applications, especially SAP.
  • Backup Navigator offers Data Protector users insight into the backup infrastructure, allowing them to make fast decisions with confidence.
  • Data Protector has tight integration with HP's 3PAR snapshot process and HP's StoreOnce deduplication backup target appliances, and can manage StoreOnce's cloud replicas.


  • Customer support experiences are mixed.
  • Data Protector's Active Directory integration does not offer single item restore.
  • Although Data Protector can manage array-based snapshots from many vendors, user adoption of this function remains low.


IBM's backup portfolio has been largely based on its Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) solution. This year, IBM announced renaming all of its storage offerings under the Spectrum brand, with TSM taking on the Spectrum Protect moniker. IBM's backup software is packaged in bundles that range from the TSM Entry edition to protect a small number of servers to other bundles that manage multiple petabytes with a single instance. TSM's robust policy engine, data reduction capabilities that are inherent in its architecture and scalability to the largest of enterprises are often cited as primary reasons why customers choose the solution. IBM has enhanced its third-party hardware snapshot exploitation, now supporting a broad range of vendors. Continued architectural enhancements for greater scale and performance, as well as revamped server virtualization support improvements in 2014, have been well-received. IBM has been active in courting new customers via service providers that deploy TSM in a hybrid cloud model. IBM's Butterfly software allows for migrations from other backup products and can demonstrate IBM's favorable TCO (TCO) against competitors from real-world data. TSM's greatest challenge has arguably been perception, with past concerns that seem to linger, despite seemingly having been addressed.


  • TSM offers broad platform support for protected systems and the ability to interface with many storage devices, and is capable of scaling to the very large enterprise.
  • A broad range of IBM and non-IBM storage array snapshots are supported in the TSM recovery hierarchy, along with the ability to write data to disk, tape and cloud target devices.
  • In addition to offering a broad range of backup capabilities, the TSM (Spectrum Protect) portfolio also offers file-level archiving and hierarchical space management across many OSs.


  • Despite more than a decade of releasing new layouts and underlying interface technologies, end users, including IBM's own references, rate the TSM UI as being challenging to navigate.
  • Pricing for existing customers that is based on processor value units (PVUs) is often an issue, and there can be confusion regarding the ability to change pricing models and which capacity-based method should be considered.
  • Currently, VM protection requires administrator involvement for file-level recovery, and a separate management UI.


Seagate's wholly-owned subsidiary, EVault, now part of the Seagate Cloud Systems and Solutions group, has a long history as a backup service provider with its own server backup technologies. It differentiates itself with its support for a wide range of OS platforms, support for hybrid cloud (on-site and off-site backup and replication), and a worldwide presence through data centers it owns and those of regional partners, now supplemented by Microsoft Azure. Seagate has replaced EVault's data center storage with its own technologies to drive down costs and enhance cloud infrastructure diagnostics and durability. Its back-end vaults now scale up to multiple petabytes via a reference architecture, and its clustered vault supports two tiers of storage. Seagate's server backup architecture is agent-based, with 'block delta forever' backup and target-side deduplication. Seagate sells a virtual appliance and a family of physical appliances scaling from 1TB up to 100TB per appliance, resulting in a 1PB total usable capacity for customers to deploy at their site for faster recovery. NetApp Ontap customers can replicate to a multitenant SnapVault system installed at Seagate's sites. In the past year, Seagate introduced a deduplication target appliance that supports Oracle Recovery Manager (RMAN) and other applications' native backup utilities. It also updated its support for all the latest Microsoft OS and application versions.


  • Seagate's EVault supports a broader number of OS platforms (including the IBM iSeries) and applications than most cloud backup providers.
  • Its backup agents not only can write deduplicated backup data to its own cloud and partner clouds, including Microsoft Azure in worldwide locations, but also can backup workloads running on VMs within Azure.
  • Seagate addresses data sovereignty, leakage and cloud security issues through multitenant architecture, available geographies and customer-held encryption keys.


  • Limited granular recovery capabilities are provided.
  • There is no NDMP support, with backup agents supporting Windows-based NAS directly, support for other NAS using UNC, and optional NetApp backup and replication to a NetApp device at the Seagate cloud.
  • Currently, instant access for VMs is supported for VMware, but not Hyper-V.


Symantec announced in October 2014 that it would split back into a security company of the same name and a new, storage-focused company. The new company will be named Veritas Technologies Corporation, and the transition to a new legal enterprise is expected to be completed within one calendar year. NetBackup has retained a strong presence in the market and customer consideration has risen compared to the last several years, with very little market concern regarding the impending company change. Since the last Magic Quadrant, Symantec has released a new, larger and faster integrated appliance, further extending its integrated appliance adoption; has seen greater deployment of features such as NetBackup Accelerator for fast backups and Instant Recovery for VMware VMs; and has made strides in improving customer support. Replication Director added EMC storage arrays to its existing NetApp support. Symantec was early to exploit market interest in integrated appliances. Many existing customers found appliances an easy way to upgrade older media servers or to expand backup capabilities, with new customers finding easier initial deployment and deduplication exploitation. While this evaluation is primarily focused on NetBackup, Backup Exec is also in the portfolio and is targeted at midsize enterprises, with a new v.15 release that looks to have fully addressed the issues of the 2012 release.


  • NetBackup is scalable to very large enterprises, with protection across a wide range of OSs and applications, and a broad range of data protection capabilities.
  • NetBackup features, such as Accelerator for fast backups and the OpenStorage Technology (OST) interface to backup disk devices, enabling better management of backup storage devices, are major product differentiators.
  • NetBackup integrated appliances have been very successful with customers in terms of pricing, ease of deployment and ongoing management, and have had a good track record of performance and capacity improvements.


  • Gartner advises NetBackup customers with concerns over the two companies' futures to consider a one-year renewal while the vendor completes its stated transition.
  • Since the last Magic Quadrant, there is rising evidence of improved customer support; however, references continue to rate Symantec low in this area.
  • Backup Exec customers have had to overcome the residual impact of a challenging 2012 release (addressed in 2014) and the end of life of the Backup Exec appliances.


Unitrends offers a complete package of hybrid backup to the cloud and DR as a service (DRaaS), via integrated appliances or software-only offerings. The vendor supports a wide range of OSs (including iSeries, Mac and many variants of Unix), applications and hypervisors. The acquisitions of PHD Virtual and Yuruware have expanded virtualization and cloud functionality, and virtual hosts may be protected with or without agents, depending on requirements. The standard offering is an on-premises solution, with an additional hybrid option for uploading to the Unitrends cloud or other cloud service providers. In addition to the incremental-forever backup methodology, a CDP function with data capture as often as every 60s is offered. Companies can opt for DRaaS with services to assist with seeding, next-day appliance or disk carrier shipping, and DR connectivity for the failover cloud site or servers. The ReliableDR feature is offered to automate failover, failback and DR testing for physical and virtual Windows environments. Since the last Magic Quadrant, Unitrends has bolstered its Hyper-V capabilities, added NDMP support and a new line of appliances, and expanded its Unitrends cloud to support ReliableDR and to offer a spin-up of Windows VMs. Currently, Unitrends offers multiple backup applications, with activity underway to combine them into a single solution.


  • Unitrends offers broad OS support, robust BMR capabilities and recently added NDMP for NAS.
  • The vendor ships all its appliances with tiered SSD flash storage to deliver higher performance.
  • ReliableDR provides fully automated, application-level-consistency sandbox testing of Hyper-V or vSphere VMs to ensure recoverability. This capability is available for on-site, Unitrends cloud and service providers. There are plans to enhance support for physical servers.


  • New cloud geographies are planned in EMEA, but are not currently available. If Unitrends' encryption options do not meet data sovereignty requirements, international customers should verify where the backups will be stored.
  • Storage array snapshot support is not currently offered.
  • Organizations can delegate control based on organizational grouping, but end-user self-service is not available.


Veeam has been recognized by customers as the leading VM backup vendor in the market, mostly due to its product simplicity, reliability and integration into VM management UIs, and partly due to a replication function included in the same product. Since many customers have virtualized more than 80% or even more than 90% of their entire data center server environment, VM backup has become a mainstream workload. Although most major competitors have caught up on some advanced functions, such as standing up new VMs from the backup repository, Veeam has maintained its competitive edge with its popular distinctive functions, such as the Veeam Explorer series and Snapshot Hunter. In the most recent release (v.8), Veeam made several enhancements important to enterprises, including end-to-end encryption; backup input/output control; support for EMC's Data Domain Boost and NetApp's Snapshot, SnapMirror and SnapVault; more capable and comprehensive physical tape; and Veeam Explorer for object-level restore granularity for all major Microsoft applications. Version 8 also added a self-restore portal for application owners and a set of capabilities for cloud service providers.


  • Veeam Backup and Replication is a reliable and function-rich data protection solution for VM environments.
  • Veeam offers one of the least complex and least expensive enterprise backup products in the market.
  • Customers comment favorably on general code reliability, agentless granular restores and instant recoveries.


  • Veeam support is limited to VMware and Hyper-V, thus other hypervisor and physical server backups are not offered.
  • Veeam's native deduplication ratio is relatively low, requiring more backup storage or a dedicated backup appliance.
  • While Veeam offers Universal Application-Item Recovery (U-AIR), explicit recovery support for solutions such as Domino, MySQL and Oracle is not yet offered.


Vendors Dropped
Catalogic Software was dropped as it no longer met all of the inclusion criteria for this iteration of the Magic Quadrant.

Inclusion and Exclusion Criteria
In an attempt to ensure that the most market-relevant solutions were covered in this Magic Quadrant, the following 13 criteria needed to be met at the time that initial research and survey work commenced in order for a vendor to be included in the 2015 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup Software and Integrated Appliances:

  • The vendor's portfolio must possess the capability to capture data directly and not solely rely on other third-party and/or partner means of data capture/ingestion. In short, the vendor must own heterogeneous backup software capabilities that meet the criteria below.
  • The vendor must possess some form of a backup catalog to track the protected (backed up) data, and potentially the many resulting copies of that data.
  • The solution must support files and multiple applications on Windows and either Linux or one or more Unix OS (IBM AIX, HP-UX, Solaris) in a physical and/or a virtual deployment supporting both VMware and Hyper-V.
  • The solution must natively support writing data to disk targets, and optionally support writing to a physical tape and/or a cloud destination.
  • The solution must be available for purchase as an on-premises owned/licensed program product, and not only available as a managed service offering.
  • The vendor must achieve greater than $35 million in annual new license backup software and license backup software maintenance revenue in the enterprise (greater than 500 employees) server backup market.
  • The vendor should have a growing base of customers and be actively expanding in the large-enterprise backup/recovery software market.
  • The vendor must have a disk-based backup/recovery software solution commercially available for at least one calendar year, and have at least 15 active references using the solution in a production scenario to protect heterogeneous (Windows and either Linux or one or more Unix OS) systems in a physical and/or server-virtualized environment.
  • The vendor must actively market its branded backup/recovery products in at least two major regions (for example, North America and EMEA, or Japan and the AsiaPac region).
  • If a vendor offers an integrated appliance (an appliance that contains the backup application's master and/or media server components), this packaging and delivery model are accounted for in this evaluation. Note that, for consideration, the same vendor that provides the backup software must be the brand and point of service for the integrated appliance. This rules out third-party and/or meet-in-the-channel arrangements for consideration as an integrated appliance.
  • The provider must be the originator of the required capabilities and meet all of the above requirements via intellectual property that it owns, and not rely exclusively on third-party solutions to meet these criteria.
  • New emerging vendors should have significant market awareness among midsize and large enterprises, indicated by the number of unique Gartner user client searches from Gartner's search analytics in the last 12 months.
  • The vendor must have briefed Gartner on its backup/recovery product within the last six months of the beginning of the Magic Quadrant activity (January 2015), and will have provided the required items and references to Gartner per this Magic Quadrant's schedule in order to be eligible for inclusion.

Vendors were excluded if:

  • The backup/recovery products do not appear in the competitive shortlists of Gartner's enterprise end-user organization clients.
  • The backup/recovery solution is delivered exclusively as an appliance, with no native backup application embedded in the solution.
  • The backup/recovery solution is delivered exclusively as a managed service.

We wish to emphasize two important criteria items:

  • Per inclusion criteria No. 4, to be eligible for this Magic Quadrant, a vendor must offer an enterprise backup/recovery software product, and not deliver only a disk target device. This was done to exclude those vendors that solely deliver a VTL and other disk-based backup appliances, but do not possess a backup application. Gartner evaluates these vendors in the Magic Quadrant for Deduplication Backup Target Appliances that covers deduplicating disk target devices to which backup software can write data.
  • While supporting physical tape devices is a valuable capability, tape support is not a requirement for this Magic Quadrant.

Gartner will continue to cover emerging vendors and vendors that do not yet meet the above inclusion criteria. Notable vendors that Gartner tracks include native OS and/or hypervisor providers, such as Microsoft with its Data Protection Manager and VMware with its vSphere Data Protection solution.