ExaGrid Systems, Inc. has announced that 50 companies and organizations previously using EMC Data Domain have selected ExaGrid's disk backup with deduplication to either replace their Data Domain system or to handle new growth and projects where they needed more cost-effective scalability. As their data grows, many EMC Data Domain customers experience the challenges and high ongoing costs specific to the EMC Data Domain front-end controller architecture —problems which are solved by ExaGrid's GRID architecture and unique approach to disk backup scalability.
With solutions that have a controller/disk shelf architecture such as Data Domain, organisations must add disk shelves as data grows, which means backup windows expand because there are not more deduplication processing resources added to support the increased workload, only more disk. Eventually, backup windows grow to the point where the front-end controller can no longer support the workload and must be replaced with a more powerful controller through a costly forklift upgrade.
In contrast, ExaGrid's scalable GRID architecture adds full servers—including memory, processor, disk, and bandwidth—to maintain consistently fast backup performance and a fixed length backup window as data increases. Customers can confidently purchase a system that will scale to handle future data growth, keep the backup window from expanding and avoid costly forklift upgrades associated with the front-end server/disk shelf architecture. In many system configurations, ExaGrid disk backup with deduplication is about 50% the cost of EMC Data Domain in system and maintenance costs over a 3-year period.
Among the 50 organisations that have either replaced their Data Domain system with ExaGrid, or have added ExaGrid's appliance to an existing backup environment still using Data Domain, are the following companies:
- Bollinger Inc.: The insurance broker had been backing up its data with an EMC Data Domain solution. The company needed to be able to retain 12 weeks of data for disaster recovery, but could only keep two weeks of data on its system. Realizing that expansion of the Data Domain system would be cost prohibitive, Bollinger decided to install two ExaGrid systems to back up its data. The company achieved superior data deduplication ratios and offsite replication performance with the ExaGrid system, and ExaGrid's scalable approach ensures that Bollinger can meet its backup needs without costly forklift upgrades in the future.
- Greenwich Central School District: The storage needs of the school district outgrew its existing Data Domain system, and the IT team could only achieve five to seven days of data retention. After replacing the Data Domain system with ExaGrid, the IT team saw deduplication ratios as high as 40:1, and increased its retention to about 25 days.
- RFI Communications and Security Systems: The IT team at RFI was backing up data to a Data Domain unit, but when data grew to the point where it required an expansion of the system, the company was facing a costly "forklift upgrade." Instead, RFI replaced the Data Domain system with ExaGrid, reaching deduplication ratios of as much as 63:1. In addition, the system can scale as data grows.
Bill Andrews, president and CEO of ExaGrid Systems, said: "These 50 organisations share many of the same pain points that make ExaGrid's approach more attractive compared to EMC Data Domain. As data grows and the front-end controller of the Data Domain system can't keep up, the forklift upgrades to higher performance systems become increasingly costly. Because ExaGrid's GRID-based system grows seamlessly with you, the total costs over just 3 years can be 50% less with ExaGrid compared with EMC Data Domain, which frees up valuable budget dollars you can use for other important IT initiatives."
Tom Godon, Assistant Vice President and Network Engineer for Bollinger Inc., commented: "Retention was a major issue for us, and when we realised we would need to add more disk to our Data Domain system, we decided to look for alternatives. The ExaGrid system was about half the cost of a new, comparable EMC Data Domain system. In addition to the improved retention and better transmission speeds between sites, the ExaGrid system is easy to maintain and has a user-friendly interface compared to the more complex UI of the Data Domain system. With the ExaGrid's scalability, our backup needs are met for the foreseeable future."