In a departure from its software-only roots, Symantec has introduced the NetBackup 5000 Appliance, which combines NetBackup PureDisk deduplication software and a hardware appliance with up to 16TB of capacity.

According to an article posted on Enterprise Storage Forum, Symantec claims a backup throughput rate of 1.9TB per hour with one appliance and one NetBackup Media Server, or 4.3TB per hour in a configuration with one appliance and four NetBackup Media Servers.

Analysts say that the software-hardware combo was born of a need to differentiate Symantec’s deduplication strategy from competitors such as EMC (Data Domain and Avamar) and Quantum.

“Symantec’s positioning for both NetBackup and Backup Exec is that deduplication closest to the data source delivers greater efficiencies [in network bandwidth, time and capacity savings]. But if source-side dedupe is too burdensome on source systems, the media server can handle the processing,” says Lauren Whitehouse, a senior analyst with the Enterprise Strategy Group.

“By delivering NetBackup on a purpose-built appliance, they now get to streamline the acquisition, installation and configuration of NetBackup and can be competitive with performance versus target-side vendors. Symantec is also trying to drive value by being competitive on price versus the hardware guys.”

The NetBackup 5000 Appliance and software are priced separately. The hardware costs $39,995 for 16TB of usable capacity. The NetBackup software is priced at $4,995 per TB.

Read the full article, which includes other product announcements from Symantec, on Enterprise Storage Forum: “Symantec Unveils NetBackup Deduplication Appliance.”