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Customer Success Story

Customer Success Story

Mutua Madrileña Achieves Better Performance, Security, and Deduplication with ExaGrid

Customer Overview

Mutua Madrileña is a leading company for general insurances in Spain. With more than 13 million clients, Mutua Madrileña provides health, car, motorcycle, and life savings insurance, among others. Mutua also has a presence in the Chile and Colombia regions, as part of its international strategy.

Key Benefits:

  • Better integration with Veeam for fast performance and improved dedupe
  • ExaGrid provides comprehensive security with ransomware recovery
  • Easy-to-manage ExaGrid system saves staff time on backup administration
  • ExaGrid support engineer is “like having another member on the team”
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POC Highlights Benefits ExaGrid Provides

As the focus on data protection of the IT team at Mutua Madrileña shifted to prioritize having a backup solution with strong security as well as fast backup performance, the team decided to look upgrade its backup storage solution.

Eva María Gómez Caro, infrastructure manager at Mutua, decided to test three different solutions, side-by-side, in a proof-of-concept (POC). “We have an internal policy to always consider three solutions. We ran comprehensive tests on the three options, because we don’t just rely on marketing promises. ExaGrid proved to be the best in terms of performance, security, and reliability, which is what we were looking for to ensure business continuity,” she said.

“During the POC, we were most surprised at the ingest speed that ExaGrid was able to offer, since we had been using the flash disk (SSD),” said Eva Gómez. “ExaGrid provided a much higher dedupe ratio with an average of 8:1 (with some data sets deduplicating as much as 10:1).”

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 up to 14:1, reducing the storage required and saving on storage costs up front and over time.

"We appreciate that ExaGrid keeps security in mind at all times by providing a security checklist of best practices, encouraging 2FA to be used for the system, and especially with implementing role-based access control with a security officer role. We also chose ExaGrid due to its Retention Time-Lock feature that ensures ransomware recovery."

Eva María Gómez Caro, Infrastructure Manager

Built-in Ransomware Recovery and Comprehensive Security Features

While the POC definitely impressed Mutua’s IT team, another key factor in the decision was the comprehensive security that the ExaGrid system provides.

“We appreciate that ExaGrid has designed its product with security in mind by providing a security checklist of best practices, encouraging 2FA to be used for the system, and especially with implementing role-based access control with a security officer role,” said Eva Gómez. “We also chose ExaGrid due to its Retention Time-Lock feature that ensures ransomware recovery.”

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.

ExaGrid-Veeam Integration Offers Fast Backup and Restore Performance

Mutua’s IT team backs up thousands of VMs, including one VM that is 120TB, as well as SQL data, in five daily incrementals and a weekly synthetic full. ExaGrid’s fast ingest speed is key to keeping up with the large amount of data to back up.

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).

Eva Gómez has found that ExaGrid’s integration with Veeam has worked well to improve backup ingest performance, especially the Veeam Data Mover and the Veeam Scale-Out Backup Repository (SOBR) which automates backup job management.

ExaGrid has integrated the Veeam Data Mover so that backups are written Veeam-to-Veeam versus Veeam-to-CIFS, which provides a 30% increase in backup performance. Since the Veeam Data Mover is not an open standard, it is far more secure than using CIFS and other open market protocols. In addition, because ExaGrid has integrated the Veeam Data Mover and supports Veeam Fast Clone, performing a synthetic full takes minutes and automatic resynthesis of the synthetic fulls into actual full backups takes place in parallel with backups. Resynthesis of Veeam Fast Clone synthetic fulls into ExaGrid’s Landing Zone allows for the fastest restores and VM boots in the industry.

ExaGrid is Easy to Manage with Expert Support

Eva Gómez highlights the level of customer support that ExaGrid provides, “We have been extremely happy with the proactive support that our assigned ExaGrid support engineer provides. He works so closely with us that it is almost like we have additional person on our team. ExaGrid’s Maintenance & Support contract is a huge value, because it includes all upgrades and updates and the support model of working with one engineer, which is something that we would generally pay ‘top dollar’ for in additional fees,” she said. “Our support engineer not only helps us resolve issues but often gives us advice and recommendations on how to use our ExaGrid-Veeam solution most effectively.”

One of the things the Eva Gómez likes best about ExaGrid is how easy it to use. “ExaGrid sends notifications for anything that we need to know, so it is easy to monitor the system, and we especially appreciate the feature that notifies us if an unusually large data deletion request has been sent, which could be an indicator of an attack. Using ExaGrid makes me feel secure that our data is protected,” she said. “We used to spend a lot of time to manage our shares, and that aspect of backup administration is so much easier with ExaGrid and we have noticed a significant reduction of staff time spent of backup administration.”

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.

Scale-Out Architecture for Future Growth

Eva Gómez appreciates that ExaGrid is easy to scale-out as the company’s data grows and plans to add more appliances to the existing ExaGrid system in the future.

ExaGrid appliances contain not just disk but also processing power, memory, and bandwidth. When the system needs to expand, additional appliances are simply added to the existing system. The system scales linearly, maintaining a fixed-length backup window as data grows so customers only pay for what they need, when they need it.

Data is deduplicated into a non-network-facing repository tier with automatic load balancing and global deduplication across all repositories.

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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