End-user survey: Virtual server backup and recovery

Posted on November 05, 2010 By Dave Simpson


By Dave Simpson

November 5, 2010 – A survey of 500 CIOs, commissioned by Veeam Software and conducted by Vanson Bourne, reveals some interesting trends in the virtual server space, specifically on the backup and recovery practices of IT organizations.

For example, penetration of virtual servers is now approaching 50% in IT infrastructures (currently 42%), and since CIOs on average consider half of their servers to be “mission critical,” that means that virtual servers are poised to penetrate mission critical applications. And the 42% penetration today is expected to grow to 63% in the next two years.

The #1 reason that IT organizations virtualize is to consolidate physical servers (71%), followed by improved disaster recovery (54%) and improved data protection (51%). Yet one of the primary gating factors to end-user adoption of virtual servers centers on fears relating to the ability to successfully back up and recover virtual machines (VMs). In fact, 44% of the survey respondents said that concerns regarding VM backup and recovery prevented them from virtualizing mission-critical workloads.

(The survey breaks out responses by region – US, UK, France and Germany – but the numbers cited in this article refer to total percentages.)

Not surprisingly, VMware vSphere is the leading virtual server platform (73%), followed by Microsoft Hyper-V (28%) and Citrix Xen (27%). The penetration of both Hyper-V and Xen is expected to increase to 30% over the next 12 months.

What is surprising is that administrators are only backing up, on average, 68% of their virtual environments, and only 29% of IT organizations back up their entire “virtual estate.”

Similarly, on average, backup tests are performed only once every two months (which translates into potentially 60 days of bad backups), and only 2% of all backups are tested annually.

Read the full 17-page report, with 28 charts: “VMware Data Protection Report 2010: Survey of 500 Enterprises”

Related article: “Virtualization: The foundation for data center transformation” (InfoStor)

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