Feature

Quality Awards II: Surprise Winner--BakBone NetVault is leader of the backup pack

Ezine

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Product reliability
"The main thing you want in your backup system is reliability," says Yoho. "They [CA and HP] don't go down, and they don't have to have a lot of patches."

Our product reliability section gauges how well each product meets service-level requirements, how often unplanned patches are required, how easy patches are to apply and so on. For this category, enterprise products had the widest spread among scores of all of the categories. BakBone NetVault achieved its second highest category score with a 6.14. The bellwether score we've detected in all of our surveys is for the statement "Patches/updates can be applied nondisruptively." In this regard, NetVault garnered an exceptionally high 6.77. Veritas NetBackup's 4.43 was the only negative reliability category rating of any enterprise product, and the product was also given a 4.01 for nondisruptive patch management. We've determined that there's a more direct connection between patch management and overall product satisfaction than any other single element.

But given the experiences of Johnson & Wales University's Price, CommVault Galaxy's 5.45 score for upgrade proficiency may be something of an understatement. "To download all the updates, it's a two-click thing," says Price. "To install the updates on every machine, it's another three clicks." He says that he was able to do a service pack upgrade on 150 servers across four campuses in approximately an hour and a half.

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The overall reliability ranking for SMB products wasn't particularly inspiring either. Veritas Backup Exec won the category, but with a relatively low 4.81. EMC Retrospect wasn't far behind with a 4.76, while CA BrightStor ARCserve Backup suffered its worst category score with a very negative 3.45.

We also found that the statement "This product's error handling is easy and intuitive" revealed a low level of user satisfaction. Although not all products scored poorly, the responses to this statement were among the lower scores in the category for every vendor.

This was first published in November 2006

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