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Customer Success Story

Customer Success Story

Butler National Corporation Selects ExaGrid and Veeam for Enterprise-Class Backup

Customer Overview

Butler National Corporation (OTCQB:BUKS), headquartered in Olathe, Kansas, was established in 1960 through the merger of an aviation research firm and the National Connector Corporation. Butler National operates in the Aerospace and Professional Services industries (Gaming).

The Aerospace segment develops performance enhancing aircraft modifications, special mission (ISR) and regulatory-driven aircraft solutions. The aerospace business provides systems integration, engineering, manufacturing, installation, service, overhaul and repair of aircraft and aircraft-related products.

Professional Services provides professional management services in the gaming industry through Butler National Service Corporation (“BNSC”) and BHCMC, LLC (“BHCMC”). This segment also offers professional architectural, engineering and management support services through BCS Design (“BCS”) and Butler Temporary Services.

Key Benefits:

  • ExaGrid offers many advanced features, and deep integration with Veeam
  • ExaGrid’s Retention Time-Lock ensures Butler National can recover from ransomware
  • ExaGrid-Veeam dedupe provides cost savings for long-term retention
  • ExaGrid provides Customer Support that’s “off the charts”
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Move to Enterprise-Class Solution

Butler National Corporation had been relying on a small-scale system network of Acronis Backup and QNAP NAS for years. After experiencing a large amount of data growth, the company decided to move to an enterprise-class solution, selecting ExaGrid and Veeam to back up data at multiple sites.

Ross Kurz, network administrator at Butler National, was hired to complete the backup storage transition and took on the project as it was in process and was pleased with the results, and he continues to be impressed with overall performance. “I started by setting up one of the remote sites, which is now the primary site, utilizing ExaGrid and Veeam. ExaGrid has been an exceptional performer in every way!” said Kurz. “I’ve used many different systems in my career, and ExaGrid has been superior, not just in performance, but due to its many advanced features. I even find the GUI very easy to navigate and manage.”

The ExaGrid system is easy to install and use and works seamlessly with the industry’s leading backup applications so that an organization can retain its investment in its existing backup applications and processes. In addition, ExaGrid appliances can replicate to a second ExaGrid appliance at a second site or to the public cloud for DR (disaster recovery).

"ExaGrid has hit it out of the park with its people and its product. I would recommend ExaGrid any day, with 5 stars in everything! "

Ross Kurz, Network Administrator

Server Easily Restored from ExaGrid’s Landing Zone

While resizing a Veeam Backup server, Kurz realized that the wrong partition for the server had been deleted, which rendered it inoperative.

“I contacted our ExaGrid Support Engineer and he quickly responded with the path for the files and documentation on how to restore the server. Then, I was able to create a new backup server on our ExaGrid system, and then restore the original server. I was so grateful for his help, which saved our backup system from going down,” said Kurz.

ExaGrid writes backups directly to a disk-cache Landing Zone, avoiding inline processing and ensuring the highest possible backup performance, which results in the shortest backup window. Adaptive Deduplication performs deduplication and replication in parallel with backups for a strong recovery point (RPO). As data is being deduplicated to the repository, it can also be replicated to a second ExaGrid site or the public cloud for disaster recovery (DR).

ExaGrid and Veeam can instantly recover a file or VMware virtual machine by running it directly from the ExaGrid appliance in the event that the file is lost, corrupted or encrypted or the primary storage VM becomes unavailable. This instant recovery is possible because of ExaGrid’s Landing Zone – a high-speed disk cache on the ExaGrid appliance that retains the most recent backups in their complete form. Once the primary storage environment has been brought back to a working state, the VM backed up on the ExaGrid appliance can then be migrated to primary storage for continued operation.

“Fantastic” Deduplication Provides Significant Cost Savings

Kurz has found that the combined ExaGrid-Veeam deduplication saves on storage so that he can easily accommodate Butler National’s long-term retention strategy of keeping a year’s worth of backups, including a yearly full, a monthly full, and 60 days’ worth of daily backups. “ExaGrid’s deduplication is fantastic, it’s the most efficient use of space I’ve ever seen and it provides significant cost savings,” he said.

Veeam uses changed block tracking to perform a level of data deduplication. ExaGrid allows Veeam deduplication and Veeam dedupe-friendly compression to stay on. ExaGrid will increase Veeam’s deduplication by a factor of about 7:1 to a total combined deduplication ratio of 14:1, reducing the storage required and saving on storage costs up front and over time.

ExaGrid Ensures Ransomware Recovery

Kurz appreciates that ExaGrid has a built-in ransomware recovery strategy. “We have ExaGrid’s Retention Time-Lock policy enabled so I have peace of mind knowing our data is safe,” he said. “Our ExaGrid support engineer was very knowledgeable in getting this new feature up and running for us.”

ExaGrid appliances have a network-facing disk-cache Landing Zone where the most recent backups are stored in an undeduplicated format for fast backup and restore performance. Data is deduplicated into a non-network-facing tier called the Repository Tier, for longer-term retention. ExaGrid’s unique architecture and features provide comprehensive security including Retention Time-Lock for Ransomware Recovery (RTL), and through the combination of a non-network-facing tier (tiered air gap), a delayed delete policy, and immutable data objects, backup data is protected from being deleted or encrypted. ExaGrid’s offline tier is ready for recovery in the event of an attack.

A Support Model That’s “Off the Charts”

“As great as ExaGrid Tiered Backup storage is, ExaGrid’s customer support has been off the charts. I’m able to get in touch with our support engineer rather quickly, without having to jump through hoops and wasting time. Historically, trying to get a hold of tech support in any way, shape, or form is a lengthy process with multiple layers and it’s particularly hard to talk to someone with a great level of technical competency. That is not the case with ExaGrid.”

The ExaGrid system was designed to be easy to set up and operate. ExaGrid’s industry-leading level 2 senior support engineers are assigned to individual customers, ensuring they always work with the same engineer. Customers never have to repeat themselves to various support staff, and issues get resolved quickly.

“ExaGrid is easy to install and simple to use. Our support engineer was able to help get our system online and configured appropriately in a matter of minutes. ExaGrid has hit it out of the park with its people and its product. I would recommend ExaGrid any day. 5 stars in everything!” said Kurz.

ExaGrid and Veeam

Veeam’s backup solutions and ExaGrid’s Tiered Backup Storage combine for the industry’s fastest backups, fastest restores, a scale-out storage system as data grows, and a strong ransomware recovery story – all at the lowest cost.

About ExaGrid

ExaGrid provides Tiered Backup Storage with a unique disk-cache Landing Zone that enables fastest backups and restores, a Repository Tier that offers the lowest cost for long-term retention and enables ransomware recovery, and scale-out architecture which includes full appliances with up to 6PB full backup in a single system.

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