We are in the discovery process of looking for backup software that meets the following goals.

  • Different Backup types (Full, Incremental, etc.)
  • Bare Metal Recovery to Windows and Linux
  • Automated Backups
  • Detailed Logs of what was backed up and more importunately what wasn't backed up
  • Runs while the server is running (I.E. Not booting to a LiveCD like Clonezilla for a backup)
  • Supports Windows and Linux as clients
  • Supports Windows or Linux as the backup server
  • Encryption Support
  • Compression of the Backups
  • Restore to dissimilar hardware (Windows a must, Linux would be nice)
  • Conversion to VM

Nice to haves:

So far I have tried Acronis Backup & Recovery 10 Advanced Server, ARCServer Backup 15, and looked at Storgrid.

Acronis was pretty close to what we are looking for but currently doesn't support BMR of Linux to dissimilar hardware 100%. From what I found ARCServe doesn't have BMR support at all. Storgrid only supports BMR of Windows systems. I also briefly looked into Bacula, but to get the solution we needed would be very "hacky" and probably prone to failure.

The server infrastructure I need to back up is: 3 Windows servers, less than 10GB of data each. 2 Linux servers, also less than 10GB of data each. (One of them has 2TB of storage, but that is being handled by Jungledisk.) 3 Linux VMs running on ESXi. Each less than 5GB of Data.

As it stands these backups are going to be backed up to a 1TB external drive and then to S3 via Jungledisk. The goal is to recover a server quickly after a failure. We aren't interested in restoring individual files that a user might have deleted. And to top all of this off I have an unknown budget for this project, but the lower price tag the better.


I'd consider having a look at the Backup Exec System Recovery Server Edition (Windows) and Backup Exec System Recovery Linux Edition products. The Symantec Backup Exec System Recovery Virtual Edition product might fit your ESXi host better, as well, so have a look at it. I believe they hit all your requirement points. (I'm not making a personal recommendation, but these look like they might fit your bill. I've worked around the windows product and, frankly, don't like it. That's probably my personality and preferences talking more than anything, though.)

  • Thank you for the suggestions. I will take a further look into it. A few years ago I did a trial and didn't like it either, but it might be my best bet. – steve.lippert Jul 15 '10 at 4:15

Bacula, http://www.bacula.org/en/, is an open source solution that I have used with success. It does not come with a web interface, but there are various projects out there for GUIs. The servers can run on Windows, but it is not recommended. Clients can run on almost anything.

  • Thanks, I have already looked at Bacula and did not like the interface. Also I wasn't able to get the Bare Metal Recovery going quickly enough, so it won't work for our needs. – steve.lippert Aug 27 '10 at 18:41

You may want to give Bakbone Netvault a look. It will do everything you want. I have been using it for 3 years and have been happy.

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