DataDomain is the best backup target for our organization
October 30, 2018

DataDomain is the best backup target for our organization

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Data Domain

Like most DD users, we primarily use Data Domain restorer appliances as disk targets for backups, through CIFS and VTL protocols. Two units 100 miles apart provide local backup targets and cross-replicate for geodiverse data storage. All backups from IBM iServers (VTL), Tivoli Storage Manager, vRanger, AvePoint DocAve and SQL native backups (CIFS) land on a local DD and are replicated offsite.
  • High data ingestion rate. For inline dedupe, these devices can ingest a saturated Gigabit Ethernet line, plus a FibreChannel from an AS/400.
  • High reliability. In ten years of having at least two units and ingesting 1.5 to 2TB/night of backups, we've replaced maybe three disk drives.
  • Scalability. Dedupe ratios are very good (11:1 for us for all data), and the DD2500 models allow addition of disk trays to expand capacity.
  • Ease of use. Management interface is good, the free Data Domain Management Center Appliance is even better.
  • Dedupe ratios on a per-folder or per-CIFS share basis would be nice, we can only see the ratio per partition (MTree). So it's not possible to see what ratio we get from Tivoli data vs vRanger data, for instance, because they're in the same MTree.
  • The VTL option seems inordinately expensive given it's only software. We held off a long time because of the cost, and only went down that road because the IBM iSeries is inherently unable to do a DR recovery from disk only.
  • We were able to avoid upgrading/replacing a very expensive tape library. ROI was break-even the first year.
  • We cut almost one man-hour per day in tape-handling duties.
  • Restore of large data sets (an entire GroupWise post office, for instance) was cut from 15 hours to 15 minutes.
We looked at new tape libraries, mostly. At the time, Data Domain was pretty much the only game in town besides Exagrid, and I had previous experience with DD at a former job.
Best suited for backup target, that's what it was designed for. The ingestion rate is very high, data exfil not so much. Doesn't work very well as a NAS (though functionally, that's what it is). It's very good at block-level deduplication of disparate types of data.

PowerProtect DD Series Feature Ratings

Universal recovery
Instant recovery
Business application protection
Multiple backup destinations
Deduplication and file compression
Flexible deployment
Management dashboard
Platform support
Retention options

Using Data Domain

6 - Database administrators, Backup/recovery admins, and iSeries (AS/400) Operations.
1 - This is a storage device, so in our case the Storage Admin supports the DataDamains. It's an appliance, though, so specialized storage skills aren't really necessary. A server admin or backup/recovery admin can do it.
  • Backup target for file-based backups. Tivoli Storage Manager (using storage pool type FILE) and AvePoint Docave SharePoint backups.
  • Backup target for image-level backups. Dell vRanger
  • Backup target for iSeries (VTL).
  • We have used them to store long-term static data such as litigation holds.
  • We have toyed with the idea of using them as Tier-4 storage. They are not very fast when accessed by multiple users in small IOPs, so this would have to be done judiciously.
DD has performed flawlessly for almost 10 years as our backup/recovery storage with offsite replication. Given its track record and great support from EMC, we're unlikely to look elsewhere any time soon.