We are putting together a new network infrastructure and my biggest problem has been deciding on a proper backup solution. We are currently using Veritas Backup-Exec -> REV Cartridges on our aging Domain Controller. Our backups have been failing left and right due to capacity issues and we have no off-site backup to speak of.

Our new infrastructure will be laid out as follows:

  • Win2k8 DC, DNS, DHCP
  • Win2k8 File Server, Print/Scan Server, WSUS
  • VMWare ESXi w/ Secondary DC/DNS Guest, Application Server Guests, and Development Server Guests

We should have our 20Mb Fiber WAN installed before this new infrastructure is deployed. I like Vembu Storegrid because it allows for multiple backup destinations including automatic cloud based replication. We would also like to use RDX drives for monthly snapshots.

However, I don't know what the best solution is for local Disk->Disk backup. I've considered some type of iSCSI SAN such as a Drobo B800i or using some sort of NAS device. The advantage I see with using a NAS is that I could install the Vembu Backup Service directly on the NAS instead of the File Server. I would prefer to avoid a completely DIY NAS as I don't want any hardware failures to fall on my shoulders.

I would like to know what other's would do/have done with this scenario or if I'm going about this completely wrong.

Edit: I would only install Vembu on the NAS if it were running a full blown server OS (eg. WSS, Debian, RH)


Decide on your RTO & RPO, data store size and expected growth. This will create some metrics which can be used to evaluate which device(s) can meet the objectives. Then grade the devices on cost, management, expandability, reliability, performance, etc. The best solution will vary in each situation and budget.

Re. "install the Backup Service directly on the NAS..", many (all?) commercial NAS devices will not allow installation of 3rd party apps on the device so you'll want to confirm that can be done.

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  • This is a fairly low budget deployment. Hence the use of Vembu instead of Backup-Exec or other enterprise packages. Regarding installation of the service on the "NAS"; In that scenario I was referring to a full blown NAS running WSS or something similar. To be honest, if the service was running on the target machine, it wouldn't need shares at all so I guess I shouldn't call that a NAS. – Jose T. Mar 22 '11 at 15:20
  • Even though the budget is low it's still worthwhile, IMO, doing a quick ranking because it allows for comparing products objectively. We have used StoreGrid, the price is right and like all products it has pros and cons. Be sure you understand how the image backup works, it's tied to the Windows Backup Imaging and there are some limitations there. – Ed Fries Mar 23 '11 at 15:05

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