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Data Availability Improves With Nimble / Veeam Integration
by Mike Harding – Nimble Storage Solutions Team

Data protection has been a core feature of Nimble Storage arrays from day one. But many of our customers require advanced protection capabilities, especially for their virtualized environments. And today, organizations are looking at availability in the context of increasingly complex data center technologies, not to mention the migration of some workloads to the cloud.

Nimble has been a Veeam technology partner for years, to ensure our customers benefit from their continuous stream of innovation in data protection for virtualized environments. Industry analysts at Gartner, for instance, describes Veeam as “the leading VM backup vendor in the market, mostly due to its product simplicity, reliability and integration into VM management user interfaces”.

But many customers have asked for additional integration between the two platforms, to speed data recovery and reduce admin complexity. That’s why we’re so exited about Veeam’s announcement this week of tight integration with Nimble arrays in the upcoming version 9.5 of the Veeam Availability Suite.

Veeam Availability Suite is known for its combination of backup, restore and replication capabilities found within Veeam Backup & Replication, along with monitoring, reporting and capacity planning from the Veeam ONE product. The v9.5 update adds features that will increase overall data availability and improve operational performance in both the Veeam Backup & Replication and Veeam Backup Essentials modules.

The new storage integration improves functionality and ease of use: customers can now leverage and manage snapshots on Veeam-protected Nimble arrays, and control them from within the Veeam GUI.

The joint development that resulted in this announcement provides new data protection and recovery options not available with just the independent products and without direct integration. Hence, admins would otherwise have to work through the two different interfaces and/or duplicate protection resources.

New Capabilities

Three new Nimble-specific capabilities are available with the v9.5 update:

  1. Ability to schedule the creation of Nimble storage snapshots containing application-consistent VM images, and storage snapshot replication orchestration.
  2. Restoring directly from Nimble storage snapshots or their replicated copies (entire VM, guest files and application items).
  3. Backing-up directly from Nimble storage snapshots or their replicated copies.

Specifically, the Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots feature can now recover individual application items, guest files or entire VMs from Nimble Storage snapshots and their replicated copies. In addition, the Veeam On-Demand Sandbox for Storage Snapshots can now use Nimble snapshots to create copies of production data for dev-ops, QA testing, or troubleshooting.

The value of Veeam in Nimble environments has been proven by many customers – improved backup routines, more manageable data protection, and reduced need for expensive outside consulting and professional services. These capabilities give IT leaders more ways to meet the Recovery Time and Point Objectives of the business.

At the system level, this integration improves access to array-based snapshots, reducing the impact from data protection activities on the VM production environment and freeing host system resources. At an operational level, it increases the agility of IT to be proactive regarding problems and help prevent outages. Strategically, this deeper integration with the data platform improves data protection for multiple mission-critical business applications, providing protection that spans hypervisor formats, both on-premise and in the cloud.

Customer Benefits

Customers using both Nimble and Veeam enjoy some unique benefits, which are further improved in this newest integration:

  • Hard savings: The joint solution is designed to reduce TCO (total cost of ownership), both operating expenses (from admins managing snapshots and replication more efficiently through a single view), and capital expenses (replicating from All-Flash to Adaptive hybrid flash arrays can cost as little as one-third the cost of backing up to competitive all-flash arrays).
  • Softer savings: Cost reductions are accentuated by additional time savings from non-disruptive scaling, in reduced footprint from better data efficiency, and in reduced troubleshooting from encountering fewer storage issues.
  • Improved availability: Customers get better overall data protection through a Nimble solution with non-stop availability of 99.9997%, enabled in part by features such as Triple+ Parity RAID and Predictive Analytics.
  • Unique platform intelligence: InfoSight is the storage industry’s only predictive analytics engine, providing proactive monitoring and helping assure uptime that complements data protection strategies. With InfoSight, nine out of ten problems are automatically detected with prescriptive guidance.

The Veeam Availability Suite v9.5 integration with the Nimble Storage Unified Flash Fabric will be available later this year. You’ll find additional resources in the following links, or for more information email