Well, I have had enough of BackupExec.  Its really too bad that Symantec’s combination of high pricing and brutal technical support wait times and driven Veritas’ excellent product into the ground… but that is where I find it.  As such I have been researching a few other products and this is what I have found:


Symform (Intel Partnership)


Symform is quite interesting.  YOU provide backup disk and Symform will direct tiny encrypted bits of OTHER companies files to you (and millions of others around the world).   You provide to Symform, as much disk space as YOU need to back up.  So if you want to backup 1TB, you need to make 1TB available to the Symform network.  Pratically, Symform will only use about half the space you make available and you can easily throttle the times and speed of transfers so you

Your data will be compressed, broken into millions of bits and sent to thousands (or more) of Symforms other customers.  They also provide redundancy incase some of the people your data is backed up to fail or leave the Symform network.  I beleive they say the data is duplicated the equivalent of 3 times.

Symform gives you a 100GB for free.  They will also give you a 30 day unlimited space trial.  After that you can buy Symform for… wait for it… $25/month/server you connect.  They are perfectly OK with you transfering all of your other backups or raw files to one server and then backing up just that one server.  Yes Timmy, unlimited backup is here thanks to fast, reliable and cheap internet access!


System Center Essentials Plus 2010 / 2012

The interesting part here is that SCE Plus is cheaper than Microsoft Data Protection Manager DPM, but it includes the full DPM.  I actually called microsoft and onfirmed that SCE Plus includes the FULL ENTERPRISE licence of DPM.  The MS Staffer put me on hold for 15 minutes to confirm it.  He said they had recently checked this twice and were referred to the limitations of the licensing specified here http://www.microsoftvolumelicensing.com/userights/Downloader.aspx?DocumentId=4312 and that page 76 does NOT limit its use to just Standard, so you can use ALL of the features included in DPM Enterprise… Nice!


Below is some info you might find useful:

Products Prices Features
System Center Essentials Plus 2010 Server ML Suite $412 Suite includes the System Center Essentials 2010* and System Center Data Protection Manager 2010 Server MLs for management of any workload and the server OSEs running on the device to which the license is assigned up to the product technical limit of 50 server OSEs. You only need to purchase one Server ML for each physical server device.
System Center Essentials Plus 2010 Client ML Suite $32 Suite includes the System Center Essentials 2010* and System Center Data Protection Manager 2010 Client MLs for management of the client OSEs running on the device to which the license is assigned up to the product technical limit of 500 client OSEs. You only need to purchase one Client ML for each physical client device.


System Center Essentials Plus includes System Center Essentials 2010 and System Center Data Protection Manager 2010, providing a cost-effective solution to integrate virtual and physical IT-management and data protection technologies. System Center Essentials provides a unified virtualisation and IT management solution which helps you cut costs, gain better control of, and simplify the complexity of your virtual and physical IT environment, whilst System Center Data Protection Manager provides full-featured data protection designed to protect Microsoft applications and Windows operating systems delivering continuous data protection for integrated disk, tape or cloud backup and restore capabilities.


Video for 2012 – http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/Video/hh285690



From NovaStore  http://www.novastor.com/software/windows-backup.php

It is not cheap and has many layers:

NovaBackup 12 – Has a central console and all versions will backup files but it can only backup Windows Servers and PC’s

NovaBackup 12 – $175 per physical box
+ (yes, Plus)
NovaBackup BE Virtual 12 $600 per physical box with unlimited VM’s (if you have VM’s on the box)
+ (yes, Plus)
NovaBackup BE 12 $300 per VM file level for SQL or Exchange (i.e. do mailbox restores, NOT specific email restores)


NovaBackup 14 – Much more expensive but can backup Mac’s, Linux and UNIX files.  You pay per server:

10 server pack = $6000 + REQUIRED maintenance of $1500 per year


EaseUS ToDo Backup

Since Symantec ruined Ghost for disk cloning, I have been using this products free version.  It works VERY well, has GUI, and runs right from Windows… no more boot disk.

I gave them 9 questions, and here is that they had to say:

1. Yes, we have a reseller program.

2. Our product can support Microsoft HyperV VM, and it can run on the system under virtual machine to do backup, you can also run our product on real machine to backup the virtual machine on this machine. After you finished the backup with our product, you will get *.PBD backup image file, our product can convert disk or partition image file to a virtual hard disk file, make it  available for VMware (.vmdk) or Virtual (.vhd).

3. We cannot offer telephone support service currently, but we can provide email support.

4. About the license, a single license can only be used on one real machine, if this real machine have several virtual machine system, you can also use our product directly on these virtual machine, and you needn’t to purchase other license  for this computer.

5. We doesn’t have special version for virtual machine, as we replied in4, you can install it to the virtual machine and host. When you install  our product, you need to reboot your computer to finish the installation.

6. We don’t have a central management tool, sorry for the inconvenience, we will do our best to improve our product in the future.

7. Our product can backup to external hard disk, but the current version of our product can’t support USB 3.0 very well.

8. When you do a backup, you can set the compression mode, there doesn’t have a special limitation for office type documents and files, for more
information, please refer to:http://www.todo-backup.com/products/features/compress-backup-image-file.htm

9. The trial version can only be tested for 15 days, sorry for the inconvenience.

VEEAM – ADDED May 29, 2012

Veeam is a Virtual Machine (VM) back up tool which initially sounds quite limiting but if you think about your environment, probably is all you need.  It is smokin’ fast and demo’s very nicely.  It supports both HyperV (as of June 2012) and VMware and has some very nice and unique features like no client!  Thats right, you don’t install ANY software on the VM’s. 

Veeam natively supports Exchange SQL and Sharepoint so they does NOT charge extra for what other companies (like Symantec) call “plug ins”.

OK, its 3am and I am pretty tired so spend 5 minutes and watch this video; you won’t regret the time.



I found this Wiki list to be helpful as well http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_backup_software .


For now, I am going to try Symform and continue to investigate DPM under System Center Essentials Plus.


I hope this helps


totoe · April 13, 2018 at 12:02 pm

well said backup exec and system recovery are the to go solutions because they been for a while.sadly the products begin to suck as we have got many problems with it.i wouldnt find a shared folder on a nas.what the hell..im fed up with you veritas, the products are shite! bless the new backup/recovery programs who undrerstand our pain as it admins

PJBeee · May 23, 2012 at 12:43 pm

I’ve been fed up with Backup Exec for years. And it’s just silly that Symantec System Recovery (formerly V2i protector, formerly LiveState Recovery, etc.), can’t do a simple drive clone of XP or Win7 (Win 7 cloning is a disaster, and even XP cloning requires a floppy/DOS combo or similar to reset the MBR).

Easeus Todo Backup, even the free version, seems to do perfect clones of XP and Win7 disks. Put it this way; I’ve done many, and it’s been pretty solid.

I do use Symantec System Recovery to do regular full and incremental scheduled to-disk backups, however, and find it VERY reliable.

But for cloning, Easeus seems to be at least one of the simpler alternatives out there.

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