What users are saying about

AppAssure

19 Ratings

Networker

13 Ratings

AppAssure

19 Ratings
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Score 6.3 out of 101

Networker

13 Ratings
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Score 5.7 out of 101

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Likelihood to Recommend

AppAssure

AppAssure works well for quick access to point in time backups of Windows machines without having to do a complete restore. The virtual standby function is useful as a disaster recovery or high availability solution. Recent upgrades to the product and rebranding to Rapid Recovery look promising. If your Linux machines are mission [critical] make sure your administrators test restores so they can perform them in a timely manner should the need arise.
Tony Albanese profile photo

Networker

Networker is really good at backing up a lot of data and it might be the right tool for the job if you have a title like 'backup administrator'. I say this because I think to really master and benefit from Networker it requires an immense amount of time playing with the CLI tools before you could comfortably solve many issues on your own. Due to the need I have (and I generally don't have to do this for similar type/complexity products) to reach out to support so often I wouldn't generally recommend it as I work in many systems and my job requires me to administer multiple back end systems of comparable size and importance. However, it is incredibly efficient and reliable, so if you have a large infrastructure and have plenty of time to get really intimate with the software, it can be a good friend. I didn't chose Networker, at first I didn't like it, and now I think it is an OK or even good solution, but it took a lot of experience to feel that way.
Josh Dix profile photo

Feature Rating Comparison

Data Center Backup

AppAssure
6.8
Networker
7.8
Universal recovery
AppAssure
8.0
Networker
7.0
Live recovery
AppAssure
8.0
Networker
6.5
Recovery verification
AppAssure
9.1
Networker
8.4
Business application protection
AppAssure
6.4
Networker
6.0
Multiple backup destinations
AppAssure
9.8
Networker
9.0
Incremental backup identification
AppAssure
7.0
Networker
8.4
Backup to the cloud
AppAssure
5.1
Networker
6.4
Deduplication and file compression
AppAssure
3.2
Networker
10.0
Snapshots
AppAssure
4.2
Networker
10.0
Flexible deployment
AppAssure
Networker
8.5
Management dashboard
AppAssure
Networker
6.5
Platform support
AppAssure
Networker
7.4
Retention options
AppAssure
Networker
7.9
Encryption
AppAssure
Networker
7.0

Pros

  • Installation and setup is simple. You can be up and running in minutes.
  • Your backups can be replicated to the cloud or to another AppAssure server to give you additional protection.
  • The user interface is simple and easy to use and improvements in the UI and reporting are getting better with each update.
Tony Albanese profile photo
  • Networker has proven to be really reliable in restores. If it says it was backed up successfully we have never had a restore failure which is great. Some backup software fails at this most important task, but Networker has been reliable.
  • Networker is efficient on system resources. It takes a lot of backing up in order to put our Networker (VM) under any meaningful load. We back up about 60 VMs at a time while backing up other resources (such as the NAS) and it is a breeze for the system.
  • Networker is flexible. It takes a little bit to understand how everything is linked together in the interface, but you can customize just about anything about your backup jobs from speeds, threads, backend targets, schedules, and level all very easily.
  • We backup to a data domain, which I think does most of the magic, but it is a very compressed/deduped/small backup size relative to the whole sum of the data which is great. Essentially it is very efficient on the storage side, at least when coupled with a data domain.
Josh Dix profile photo

Cons

  • My biggest pet peeve is when the agent on a protected machine stops working. These failures don't show up on my daily report. I need to check the GUI to insure all the agents are talking to the core. Killing the agent process on the protected machine, then starting the service always seems to get them talking once again.
  • Linux support is limited to specific distributions. We often have to enlist AppAssure Technical Support to get our Linux VMs protected.
  • Dell releases patches to both the core and agents. The GUI reports the version of the version level but nothing about any applied patches.
Tony Albanese profile photo
  • Networker terminology is awful. My favorite example is that many required-to-function configuration changes need to occur with the advanced configuration enabled. To make this worse, the 'advanced configuration' I am speaking of is actually called 'Debug Mode'. That's right, you must use debug mode in order to have a functional administrator interface.
  • Errors are common and to resolve you often must go to support. You really need to be an expert to fix many errors, the steps usually involve being really knowledgeable in the CLI tools, which I am getting good at, but the public documentation is seriously lacking for troubleshooting these issues. That said, support (through emc) is really good at handling the common issues, friendly, generally knowledgeable, and quick to respond.
  • It runs on Java, and sometimes I need to clear java cache to fix interface bugs. Generally this isn't an issue, but it is additional software you must worry about.
Josh Dix profile photo

Likelihood to Renew

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic
Networker1.0
Based on 1 answer
There are three reasons for not renewing our use of NetWorker: 1) the rising and extremely high cost of support and proprietary hardware needed for deduplication, 2) the complete unreliability of the product (we couldn't recover from a true disaster if we wanted to), and 3) the horrible support from EMC for the product
No photo available

Usability

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic
Networker1.0
Based on 1 answer
NetWorker has the clunkiest interface and unfriendliest CLI with which I have ever had to work. I spent three years hating this application because it took ALL of my time just to keep it running. Even then, I had no confidence in our ability to recover from a disaster because of its unreliability.
No photo available

Support

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic
Networker1.0
Based on 1 answer
EMC's support of NetWorker, with rare exceptions, was a nightmare. Their "follow the Sun" approach was a good concept, but did not work well for us. We spend huge amounts of time waiting for someone to get back to us after opening support tickets. When someone would get around to responding, English was usually not their first language. Consequently there was a lot of time spent saying, "Please repeat that. I didn't understand you." Initial responses were almost alway from someone who just wanted to email a link to a document to read--usually one that had nothing to do with the issue at hand--or would promise to contact us but would not follow through for days on end. Almost every time we had a serious issue it required phone calls and emails to support managers before a technician would even be assigned to a ticket. Horrible, horrible support experiences.
No photo available

Implementation

AppAssure6.0
Based on 1 answer
Our initial installation really was not optimum. With the help from Dell Profession Services we were able to get our implementation sized correctly and better understand how to get better deduplication results
Tony Albanese profile photo
Networker1.0
Based on 1 answer
How can anyone build a house without a blueprint? NetWorker was ramrodded into place here without a design or implementation plan. The result was a setup that was doomed from the start and never worked reliable over the full three years of our contract obligation.
No photo available

Alternatives Considered

Anything is better than Backup Exec. I believe Veeam is a far superior product in backing up VMs. Veeam does not have any agents that get installed on servers which is always a plus. It also connects directly to vCenter.CommVault to me is the ultimate solution. The ability to backup physical, VMs, SQL, exchange, applications, and even do E-Discovery make it the ultimate backup suite. If you are looking at a backup suite package to cover all your needs, i think with CommVault you need not look any further.
No photo available
Previously I have used MS DPM and Symantec Backup Exec. I think they all have similar strengths and drawbacks actually. In general, BE/DPN have slightly better interfaces and terminology but slightly worse backup and recovery reliability. I would recommend Networker over them for the reason of reliability as I have experienced it. My disclaimer is that I worked with DPM and BE many years ago at this point so all this software may have improved at different rates. Backups and backup software continue to be seen as a huge but necessary time sink for me and I plan on doing more evaluations to see if there is better software out there. I am looking at trying Veeam but have not yet had a chance to evaluate, for example.
Josh Dix profile photo

Return on Investment

  • The compression and dedupe have been great. We are able to back up 10 VMs on only a 2 TB repository. We take differentials every 15 minutes and have held on to backup data for the past 3 years.
  • The pricing of AppAssure is very competitive to the market. However, now that enterprise level backup is more of a commodity, the view of looking at AppAssure should be the Dell backup suite as whole, rather than AppAssure itself.
  • Fast recovery and mount points.
No photo available
  • Networker has helped reduce risk of data loss. We have many compensating controls for business user level data but Networker has been helpful with full image recoveries. Sometimes an IT mistake can be hard to back out of and/or rebuilding from scratch isn't a good option. Networker has helped save lots of IT engineer's time in our company.
Josh Dix profile photo

Pricing Details

AppAssure

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details

Networker

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details