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Customer Success Story

Customer Success Story

Law Firm Selects Cost-Effective ExaGrid System for Faster Backups, Better Disaster Recovery

Customer Overview

Founded in 1904, von Briesen & Roper, S.C. employs over 180 attorneys and is the seventh largest law firm in Wisconsin. The firm’s attorneys are leaders in the areas of corporate, commercial, health, banking, litigation, risk management, labor, real estate, construction, employee benefits, intellectual property, and wealth management law.

Key Benefits:

  • Improved disaster recovery
  • Versatile solution with strong integration with Backup Exec and Veeam
  • Superior customer support
  • Appliances automatically join scale-out system to support data growth
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Quest for Better Disaster Recovery Led to ExaGrid

The IT staff at von Briesen & Roper began to look for a new backup solution in an effort to improve disaster recovery. The firm had been backing up to a tape library and then rotating the tapes offsite for safekeeping but wanted to better protect its critical data by electronically replicating it each night to a disaster recovery location. “Our firm handles lots of sensitive and business critical data for clients,” said Scott Timmerman, senior IT manager at von Briesen & Roper. “Sending tapes offsite really isn’t disaster recovery. We needed a solution in place capable of providing near instantaneous replication of data to a second site so that we could quickly and easily recover from a disaster.”

After looking at a Veritas NetBackup appliance and a few other solutions, the firm decided to purchase a two-site ExaGrid disk-based backup solution with data deduplication. Data is backed up to the ExaGrid system located in the firm’s main Milwaukee datacenter and then replicated to a remote office 70 miles away. The ExaGrid system works with Veritas Backup Exec and Veeam to back up and protect the firm’s mission-critical data, including its document management system, email, and billing data.

“The ExaGrid system delivered the speed and replication capabilities we were looking for at a terrific price point,” said Timmerman. “We also liked the fact that it works with all the popular backup applications. The ExaGrid is versatile so that we not only can use it along with Backup Exec and Veeam, but looking forward, we can use it with practically any other application we choose.”

"Sending tapes offsite really isn’t disaster recovery. We needed a solution in place capable of providing near instantaneous replication of data to a second site so that we could quickly and easily recover from a disaster. "

Scott Timmerman, Senior IT Manager

Data Deduplication Reduces Amount of Data Stored, Speeds Transmission Between Sites

Timmerman said that ExaGrid’s data deduplication technology is effective at reducing the firm’s data and helps to speed transmission between sites. “The ExaGrid system does a fantastic job at reducing our data, which maximizes disk space on the system,” he said. “It also helps to make the transmission between our primary datacenter and our disaster recovery site efficient because only changed data is moved between sites. For us, transmission is nearly instantaneous.”

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). Prior to installing the ExaGrid system, the firm had a limited backup window and a long weekend job schedule to capture the point-in-time backups to tape. However, von Briesen & Roper revamped its backup infrastructure when it implemented the ExaGrid system and added Veeam for virtual backups. Now, the firm is able to back up its entire virtual server environment, NAS and SAN systems to the ExaGrid system. Because multiple backup jobs can be run simultaneously, backup times have been reduced to less than 12 hours.

Easy Setup and Maintenance, Superior Customer Support

Timmerman said that he spends less time managing backup jobs now with ExaGrid. “The ExaGrid system was easy to work with from the start. The installation was quick and easy, and maintaining the system doesn’t take any time at all. I look at the ExaGrid system every day to monitor the status of our backup jobs, but there’s not a whole lot to manage because they run consistently well,” he said.

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’s customer support has been excellent. We don’t have any other product in our datacenter that comes with a support model like ExaGrid’s, where we get a dedicated support engineer who is knowledgeable and proactive,” said Timmerman. “There’s a deep level of expertise in ExaGrid’s customer support center. If our support engineer doesn’t know the answer to something, he directs it to a senior level engineer, and we can get any issue or question resolved quickly.”

Scale-out Architecture Ensures Scalability

ExaGrid’s award-winning scale-out architecture provides customers with a fixed-length backup window regardless of data growth. Its unique disk-cache Landing Zone allows for the fastest backups and retains the most recent backup in its full undeduplicated form, enabling the fastest restores.

ExaGrid’s appliance models can be mixed and matched into a single scale-out system allowing a full backup of up to 2.7PB with a combined ingest rate of 488TB/hr, in a single system. The appliances automatically join the scale-out system. Each appliance includes the appropriate amount of processor, memory, disk, and bandwidth for the data size. By adding compute with capacity, the backup window remains fixed in length as the data grows. Automatic load balancing across all repositories allows for full utilization of all appliances. Data is deduplicated into an offline repository, and additionally, data is globally deduplicated across all repositories.

“ExaGrid’s scale-out architecture ensures that we won’t get locked into a system that can’t scale to handle more data,” said Timmerman. “It’s comforting to know that we can just pop in another unit when we outgrow this one. We’ve been pleased with the system, and I’m very confident in the speed and accuracy with which we can recover from a disaster.”

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 storagesystem as data grows, and a strong ransomware recovery story – all at the lowest cost.

ExaGrid and Veritas Backup Exec

Veritas Backup Exec provides cost-effective, high-performance backup and recovery – including continuous data protection for Microsoft Exchange servers, Microsoft SQL servers, file servers, and workstations. High-performance agents and options provide fast, flexible, granular protection and scalable management of local and remote server backups. Organizations using Veritas Backup Exec can look to ExaGrid Tiered Backup Storage for nightly backups. ExaGrid sits behind existing backup applications, such as Veritas Backup Exec, providing faster and more reliable backups and restores. In a network running Veritas Backup Exec,
using ExaGrid is as easy as pointing existing backup jobs at a NAS share on the ExaGrid system. Backup jobs are sent directly from the backup application to ExaGrid for backup to disk.

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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