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CA (NASDAQ: CA) hopes to shake up the data backup and recovery market by giving ARCserve Backup users free deduplication and backup reporting.
"The inclusion of key features at no additional cost is a bold move," said Enterprise Strategy Group analyst Lauren Whitehouse. "It definitely helps CA stand out in a crowded market."
Dedupe is a free feature in solutions such as WAN optimization, archiving systems and backup technologies, said Whitehouse, citing Asigra, EMC (NYSE: EMC) Avamar, Symantec (NASDAQ: SYMC) PureDisk and Seagate's i365 Evault. IBM (NYSE: IBM) added free deduplication to Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) Extended Edition earlier this year. In the mid-market, Whitehouse said CA also competes with Symantec Backup Exec, which doesn't currently offer deduplication.
CA's SRM reporting feature isn't new either, but Whitehouse said CA is offering more than the basic functions that users usually get for free. CommVault (NASDAQ: CVLT), for example, offers SRM as an add-on module for a fee, she said, while Symantec sells a standalone product called Veritas Backup Reporter for Symantec Backup Exec.
Taneja Group analyst Eric Burgener said CA's moves are "clearly a way to make them more competitive," but he added that "customers will still need to evaluate the functionality to determine if it meets their need, then decide if the free option is really a viable option for their production environments."
ARCserve Backup also dedupes virtual machine backups in Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) Hyper-V, Citrix (NASDAQ: CTXS) XenServer and VMware (NYSE: VMW) environments, and the new version includes simpler file recovery for Hyper-V and VMware vSphere 4 and ESX environments.
It also includes password management capabilities for encryption keys and the ability to verify the recoverability of backed up data.
Frank Jablonski, senior director of product marketing for CA's Recovery Management and Data Modeling Business Unit, said the company claims a 20:1 deduplication ratio for the ARCserve Backup dedupe feature, and said it has been optimized for in-line processing so that there is only a "slight performance hit."
CA ARCserve Backup r12.5 is part of the new CA Recovery Management solution, which also includes new releases of XOsoft High Availability and XOsoft Replication, which also include additional support for virtualization environments, plus new support for UNIX, Linux and SharePoint. They also include automated disaster recovery testing.
Pricing for ARCserve Backup starts at $1,000 per physical server for the file server suite, about $1,400 to $1,500 for the application and messaging database suite, and $395 per instance for the virtual suite. XOsoft pricing starts at $2,000 per host and replica.
CA is also offering two free copies of XOsoft Replication and one year of maintenance with the ARCserve Backup "X-tra Value Pack."
The announcements were part of CA's new schedule of twice-yearly releases of major product news.
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