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The 10 Best Virtual Machine Backup Software

Best Virtual Machine Backup Software

Diego Asturias

The virtual machine backup software shown in this post aims to protect data via backup and recovery, data security, and privacy methodologies‚— all qualities of a data security-centric solution. We will focus on the ten best virtual machine backup software. 

The intention behind data protection software is to backup and restore data scattered across different environments (cloud, on-prem, edge, mobile, etc). In addition, these solutions also provide a solid defense against threats, cyberattacks, and especially Ransomware.

In this post, we’ll describe these backup/restore solutions, how their virtual machine backup solution is implemented, a few highlights, their licensing and pricing (if listed on their official site), and how to start using their products.

The 10 Best Virtual Machine Backup Software

  1. Veeam Backup and Replication A global leader and the most popular in backup, recovery, and data protection and management solutions.
  2. N-Able Backup A backup and data protection solution with a cloud-first approach. N-able performs VM backups and automated recovery tests.
  3. Altaro VM Backup A developer of backup and recovery solutions for MSPs. Altaro focuses on virtual machine backup/recovery solutions.
  4. Cohesity Backup and Recovery It is complete data protection and management solution that backs up VM data on-prem, cloud, or hybrid environments.
  5. Rubrik A cloud-based data management and protection solution based on a zero-trust data security model.
  6. Commvault Backup & Recovery  It is an enterprise-grade backup and recovery solution that allows full backup of any virtual machine environment.
  7. Unitrends Backup An all-in-one backup and restore solution integrated with appliances, DraaS, cloud backup, threat monitoring, and compliance management.
  8. Acronis Backup (Cyber Protect) A solution with a strong focus on data protection across different environments. It supports most of the VM hypervisors.
  9. Veritas NetBackup A leader in data management and protection solutions. They provide a reliable backup and recovery solution for VMs.
  10. Dell EMC Data Protect A comprehensive suite of products (appliance and software) designed to protect data in MSPs and enterprises.

1. Veeam Backup and Replication

Veeam Backup and Replication

The company (Veeam) is a global leader in backup, recovery, and data management and protection solutions. Veeam is hands down one of the best and most popular virtual machine software out there. It provides a single and central platform for any cloud, virtual, physical, SaaS and Kubernetes environments.

Highlights

  • Use it in conjunction with Synology NAS.
  • Cloud-native backup and recovery for AWS, Azure, and Google.
  • Virtual machine software integrations (VMware vSphere, MS Hyper-V, and Nutanix AHV.
  • Robust protection from Ransomware.
  • Integrations with MS VSS, Oracle, SAP Backint, RMAN, and Kubernetes API.

With the Veeam Backup and Replication v11 (the foundation of the Veeam Platform), you can easily backup to image-based, single-pass, hardware, and OS snapshots and instantly restore virtual machines. In addition, Veeam comes with native functionality to offload backups to multiple and different clouds. With Veam, you can protect virtual workloads from the most popular virtual machine software.

Licensing and Pricing

You can obtain the Veeam Backup & Replication (within the Veeam Platform) via a subscription or perpetual license. For a one-year subscription of the Veeam Backup Essentials for up to 50 workloads, the price starts at $6.67/month (or $80/year/license). The minimum purchase is a five license bundle.

How to start?

Download a free Veeam Backup and Replication 30-day trial. Veeam Backup and Replication software are not only one of the best VM backup premium solutions, but their free virtual machine software “community-edition” is also quite good.

2. N-Able Backup

N-Able Backup

N-able (former SolarWinds MSP) is one of today’s most reputed IT service management solutions focusing on empowering MSPs, IT departments, or enterprises with RMM, security, and data protection tools. Their backup tool, N-able Backup, delivers the data protection capabilities with a cloud-first backup approach for virtual, physical apps, docs, or MS 365.

Highlights

  • Backup VMware or Hyper-V virtual machine environments.
  • Hybrid environment, Combine on-premises and cloud backups.
  • Back up changes rather than entire files with TrueDelta technology.
  • Encrypt data (on-premises and in the cloud) with AES 256 or 448-bit Blowfish.

N-able Backup is one of the best VM backup software, as it performs full virtual machine backups and automated recovery testing. You can restore to an existing or alternative virtual environment. Aside from backup & restore, N-able can also (with RMM capabilities) automatically update a virtual machine after each backup.

Licensing and Pricing

Obtain N-able via RMM or Backup and Data Protection. For more information on its licensing and pricing, contact N-able sales.

How to start?

Register to start a 30-days free trial of N-able Backup.

3. Altaro VM Backup

Altaro VM Backup

Altaro is a fast-growing backup and recovery solutions developer for MSPs, IT departments, and enterprises. They specialize in virtual machine software, including robust backup solutions for VMware VM and Microsoft Hyper-V, but also provide backup solutions for physical servers or cloud environments like MS O365.

Highlights

  • Centralize backups/restores and replication tasks.
  • Manage and monitor all your virtual machine hosts.
  • Multiple offsite backup locations.
  • Grandfather-Father-Son Archiving (GFS).
  • Augmented Inline Deduplication.

Altaro is one of the best Virtual machine software, thanks to their flagship solution: Altaro VM Backup. This solution has gained popularity, especially for its high performance on Hyper-V and VMware backup and replication. With Altaro VM Backup, you can control all your backups and access popular award-winning support from a single central console.

Licensing and Pricing

There are four types of licenses paid on a subscription or perpetual basis: Free (​​VM backup for 2 VMs/host, forever), Standard (perpetual license), Unlimited (perpetual license), or Unlimited Plus Edition ($115.80/VM/year, subscription-based pricing for a minimum of 5 VMs).

How to start?

Download Altaro’s free virtual machine software, or get a fully functional 30-day trial of Altaro VM Backup (Unlimited Plus Edition).

4. Cohesity Backup and Recovery

Cohesity Backup and Recovery

Cohesity develops data protection and management solutions that allow sysadmins to backup, restore, manage, and get insights from data scattered across multiple environments. Their solution provides a unified view and central access to all backups and analytics data. Cohesity was named a leader in Gartner 2021’s MQ for Enterprise Backup and Recovery Solution.

Highlights

  • Search any VM and instantly restore from full backup snapshots.
  • Supports VMware vSphere, vSAN, Cloud Foundation, and VMware Cloud on AWS.
  • Support for Microsoft Hyper-V environments.
  • Simplify backup/recovery of Nutanix AHV, AOS, and Prism.
  • Natively integrates with Kubernetes.

Cohesity Backup and Recovery is one of the best VM backup software because it focuses on data protection. The software allows backup and recovery on-premises, in the public cloud, at the edge, and in a SaaS. In addition, it also offers the Backup as a Service (BasS) model, which allows users to switch from an on-premise-based backup to a cloud-based backup.

Licensing and Pricing

Cohesity offers perpetual and consumption-based subscription licenses. Subscriptions are limited to the number of nodes contained in a Cohesity cluster

How to start?

Sign up to get a free Cohesity’s Backup as a Service trial for 30 days.

5. Rubrik

Rubrik

Rubrik is a cloud-based data management and backup solutions developer. They use the zero-trust data security model on their software, which helps protect your VM backups from being easily discovered or encrypted. Rubrik was named Leader in 2021 Gartner MQ for Data Center Backup and Recovery Solutions.

Highlights

  • Supports VMware vSphere (ESXi), Microsoft Hyper-V, and Nutanix AHV.
  • Natively integrated continuous data protection for VM environments.
  • Instant recovery with a near-zero Recovery Time Objective (RTO).
  • Intelligent policy engine to generate and automate compliance.
  • Robust protection from Ransomware.

Rubrik allows you to consolidate all your backup and recovery data regardless of where it comes from (hardware, software, cloud, or virtual) into a central management console. In addition, you can also set up the policies for data backup, archival, DR, analytics, or replication from the same single console.

Licensing and Pricing

You can buy Rubrick from a subscription-based license (SaaS). Rubrik Go comes with different plans: Foundation, Business, and Enterprise. For information on pricing, contact sales.

How to start?

Sign up to request a Rubrik's Cloud Data Management platform trial or a Rubrik Live demo.

6. Commvault Backup & Recovery

Commvault Backup & Recovery

Commvault provides an enterprise-grade data services platform for data that resides on-premises, in the cloud, in hybrid or multi-cloud environments, SaaS-delivered, or in an integrated appliance. Its intelligent data services include data protection, a solution that lets you back up and quickly recover data at any scale and from/to the cloud.

Highlights

  • Backup and recovery plans support your existing policies and VM tags.
  • Use copy data management to repurpose backup data.
  • Robust snapshot management framework.
  • Quickly backup, recover, and move your VM data between clouds.
  • Built-in Ransomware protection.

Commvault Backup and Recovery provides complete workload portability across all your virtual machine environments (regardless of location). You can also get full visibility into your virtual workloads from the Commvault command center, a centralized and intuitive web-based management console.

Licensing and Pricing

Comvault is known to be on the enterprise-range pricing. For more information, contact Commvault sales.

How to start?

Register to start a Commvault Complete Data Protection 30-day trial.

7. Unitrends Backup

Unitrends Backup

Unitrends (by Kaseya) is an all-in-one backup and restore solution designed for the enterprise, MSPs, and IT departments. It integrates backup appliances (+ software), cloud backup (+ DRaaS), threat monitoring, and compliance (HIPAA and GDRP) management. Unitrends Backup is known for its virtual backup appliances for VMware vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V, or Citrix XenServer.

Highlights

  • VMware vSphere, Hyper-V, and XenServer Hypervisor-Level Protection.
  • Instant, full, or file-level VM Recovery.
  • Robust Ransomware defense.
  • Granular backup and recovery control via an intuitive UI.
  • Integration with Unitrends Cloud for archiving and DR.

Unitrends Backup can run as a virtual backup appliance on any hardware deployed on-premises or cloud. It protects your virtual machines and integrates with Unitrends Cloud for archiving and DR. You can run the virtual appliances on vSphere, Hyper-V, or Citrix XenServer for the on-premises backup solution. But when it comes to cloud environments, Unitrends Backup is supported on Microsoft Azure and AWS S3 public clouds.

Licensing and Pricing

Software editions: Unitrends Essentials and Standard. Software+Hardware Editions: Enterprise and Enterprise Plus. Unitrends prices are based on a subscription-based OPEX model (except hardware). Use the Unitrends Backup price calculator.

How to start?

Try Unitrends Backup Software free for 30 days.

8. Acronis Backup (Cyber Protect)

Acronis Backup (Cyber Protect)

Acronis is one of the ten best virtual machine backup software for many good reasons. Their data protection software is an all-in-one Cyber Protection platform designed to unify all data protection across apps and systems. Acronis is built for MSPs and enterprises but can also be used by smaller IT businesses.

Highlights

  • Protect from cyberthreats that target backup files and their processes.
  • Streamline protection of VMs with complete disk-image backup.
  • Validate and protect backups to ensure successful VM recoveries.
  • Run VM backups with low RTO in case of disaster.

Acronis Backup Cyber Protect can safeguard (backup/restore) individual files, applications, or full systems deployed on physical, virtual, cloud, mobile, or endpoints. When it comes to virtual machine software, Acronis supports VMware vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V, Scale Computing HC3, Citrix XenServer, Red Hat Virtualization, Linux KVM, and Oracle VM Server.

Licensing and Pricing

Acronis Cyber Protect is available with perpetual and subscription licenses. It provides different product editions for virtual backups: Standard (from $639.00), Advanced ($1069.00), and Backup Advanced ($929.00). The license is based on the number of operating environments and devices running on-premises or in the cloud.

How to start?

Register to Acronis to get your free 30-day trial of Cyber Protect Cloud.

9. Veritas NetBackup

Veritas NetBackup

Veritas is one of the oldest data management companies, founded in 1983. The company has maintained leadership in enterprise data protection and management solutions. Their modern software lets you manage and protect all your data and apps from the on-premises to the cloud at any scale. Veritas has been named 15x a leader in Gartner’s MQ for Enterprise Information Archiving.

Highlights

  • Supports VMware, Microsoft Hyper-V, Nutanix AHV, and Red Hat OpenShift.
  • Recovery from individual files or folders to VMs (or VMDKs).
  • Boot from backup disk storage to instantly recover VMs.
  • Granular restore for single files and folders without requiring the entire VM.

Veritas NetBackup is one of the best VM backup and recovery solutions for the enterprise. The solution delivers a reliable backup and granular data recovery capable of scaling with any virtual machine environment. It combines automation, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and an elastic architecture to secure data anywhere at any scale.

Licensing and Pricing

Veritas is known to be on the enterprise-range pricing. Contact the Veritas sales team.

How to start?

NetBackup is designed for the enterprise (no free trial available). But you can download a free 60-day trial of Veritas Backup Exec, a VM backup software designed for SMBs.

10. Dell EMC Data Protection

Dell EMC Data Protection

Dell EMC Data Protection is a leading data protection solution (appliance and software) designed for MSPs, enterprises, or IT departments. It works using cloud data backup automation and robust data protection from cyberattacks and ransomware to safeguard workloads in on-premises, hybrid, or multi-cloud environments. Dell EMC has been recognized 16x as a Leader in Gartner’s MQ for Enterprise Backup and Recovery Software.

Highlights

  • Automated data backups for VMware hybrid cloud environments.
  • Protect VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V virtual environments.
  • Generate transparent snapshots to ensure VM availability.
  • Protect VMware virtual machines with granular recovery.
  • Replicate VMs (VMDK and RDM) locally or remotely.

The Dell EMC Data Protection Suite offers next-generation data management and backup tools to meet the demands of any business size. The Data Protection Suite provides comprehensive backup/recovery, replication, cloud-based DR, and a solid VMware integration solution. For instance, the suite includes Dell EMC RecoverPoint, a virtual machine data protection software that provides continuous data protection for operational recovery and disaster recovery.

Licensing and Pricing

Contact a Dell EMC’s sales representative.

How to start?

Start with a free 60-days trial of Dell EMC Data Protection Advisor, and learn insights into your data protection environment.

Final Verdict

The ten best virtual machine backup software shown in this post will provide you with reliable backup and restore. Solutions targeting MSPs and enterprises tend to be much pricier than those with SMB licenses. In addition, free virtual machine software such as Veeam’s Community Edition can be all you need if you intend to protect a couple of VMs.

Our top choices are Altaro VM Backup, Veeam Backup and Replication, and N-Able Backup. They all have a free trial, so there is no excuse to start protecting your VMs today!

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