There’s still time: Download Veeam Endpoint Backup this holiday season!

This week, I’m diligently working a number of things here at Veeam but it dawned on me; I need to do some PC work with my family this weekend!

We’ve all been there. We go home over the holidays and get the questions from family. How do I do this or that with the computer, or heck, anything that is on the Internet or is using electricity these days! You know what I’m talking about! One thing I like to do is protect from problems and think ahead.

If you didn’t know, in April of this year Veeam released Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE.
FREE like no cost. Like the plan won’t change. Like this functionality will always be included in the free edition.

Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE works for Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and now Windows 10. It also is supported on Windows Server 2008 R2, 2012 and 2012 R2 platforms. It isn’t required to be a virtual machine either, so it can install on physical systems and back them up.

In regards to the restores, you can restore the entire volume, the entire computer, or individual files. I encourage you also to recreate a recovery media (a VeeamZIP USB drive sitting around anyone?) to go with the PC as well. The recovery media can be used to reset a local password (HANDY!), launch restores over WiFi and do perform some tools for the system outside of the bootable OS on the computer.

I am preparing to install Veeam Endpoint Backup on a number of my family’s computers to protect them from mishap and probably save myself time later on.
So here’s a quick rundown of steps you can take this holiday season:
•    Gather a few USB drives (small for recovery media, large to hold backups)
•    Download Veeam Endpoint Backup
•    Install Veeam Endpoint Backup
•    Do an update to the application (in case you have an old installation sitting around – see example below about new update available)

•    Create the recovery media
•    Set up a backup job. The job can go to a USB drive (removable storage) or a network share. A Veeam Backup & Replication repository is supported as well. Chances are you friends and family don’t have a B&R infrastructure in place at home; but if they do – that’s my kinda family!
•    Tweak the rules for the scheduler, like time to backup and if the media is attached, etc. to the usage patterns of the computer.
•    Maybe also do an explicit full backup and copy it to another folder (to ‘mark’ your progress as a known working state)

Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE is very easy to use, and this can help you avoid questions when family has issues with their home computers. Happy Holidays and hopefully Veeam Endpoint Backup can help.

Will this help you in your holiday endeavors? Share your comments below.

The Unofficial VeeamON Recap

This past week Veeam hosted VeeamON 2015 in Las Vegas. VeeamON is what we call the world’s premier data center availability event and this is the second time we’ve done the event. I was on what we call the “core team” and thought I’d better get down a bunch of opinions, notes and more before I forget! Which by the way, this is why I started blogging in the first place – to make sure I’d not forget something important! Let’s do a day-by-day recap from the Rickatron perspective, I’ll do my best to be as detailed as possible so you see a new perspective to the event.

Before I go through the detailed review, I should note out all of the key announcements from VeeamON:

NEW PRODUCT: Veeam Backup for Linux. This will be a new FREE tool that is an application (or agent) inside of a Linux operating system to do backups to a Veeam repository. Additionally, it has a image technology that functions “a la” changed block tracking, so it’s smart!! Press release is here and you can sign up for the beta (issued on a first come first served basis) at:

NEW PRODUCT: Veeam Managed Backup Portal for Service Providers. You may have seen what we have been doing with Kaseya and LabTech but did you ever wonder what if you don’t have a RMM framework? Well enter the Veeam Managed Backup Portal for Service Providers.

BUSINESS NEWS: Veeam Rocks, press release.

Sunday 25-October – Get there and prep day!

My primary objective was to travel to the event on this day. I flew CMH-LAX-LAS on Delta (my preferred airline). I left Columbus at around 6:30 AM, pretty early, but I needed to be there soon. As a matter of fact, most of the core team arrived either Saturday or Friday. I was rather late, but my preparations were mostly done. I was happy that I got upgraded on the CMH-LAX flight. That was the longer of the two and set the tone for me to get some rest during the flight. One of my colleagues from the cloud team was on the same routing as me, so that was nice to have someone to chat with on the ground.

When I landed in Las Vegas I had arranged transportation and proceeded immediately to the Aria hotel and resort. My room was not ready yet, so I took me and all of my luggage to the convention area and worked a bit with the core team. The room was ready about 2 hours after my arrival, which was fair as that would have been only around 3PM then.

I located one of my staff and made sure my copious amounts of SWAG were staged up correctly for the Veeam Vanguards who attended VeeamON. The Veeam Vanguard program is the largest endeavor that Veeam Product Strategy has taken on to date and this is very important not just to me but to the entire brand!

After I confirmed the swag was good, I did a demo rehearsal with my peers in Product Strategy. We had a mainstage demo segment of the upcoming Veeam Availability Suite v9. Here’s what we demoed:

· Clint Wyckoff: Backup from Storage Snapshots with EMC VNX and VNXe storage

· Mike Resseler: The Scale-Out Backup Repository

· Luca Dell’Oca: Veeam Cloud Connect Replication

· El Rickatron: Veeam Explorer for Oracle

We practiced it 3 times the Friday before via WebEx and we had 3 rehearsals on-site as well. Let’s say we were prepared! Here’s a view of one of our walk through practices of the mainstage demo:


After the rehearsal I changed my clothes and headed to the poolside reception. This served as dinner and a great way to mingle with other attendees. Those who took the VMCE training class were on-site as well for this dinner.

The dinner was cool as it was a themed dinner with many stations of food choices from around the world. Honestly, I barely could leave the Canada section. They had tater tot poutine!

I made it a point to get to bed early, I had a busy week ahead of me. I was asleep by 9:30 PM (and that was smart!)

Monday 26-October – Veeam Vanguard Day!

I mentioned that the Vanguards had a chance to visit VeeamON, this event was a complimentary trip for them and they also had a special day with incredible access so I wanted it to be special for them. The agenda for Vanguard Day was the following:

· Introductions from Product Strategy and Welcome

· Welcome message from Ratmir

· A little chat about beta 1

· An “Ask Me Anything” with leaders from the Research and Development team (Gostev, Vitaliy, and the King) under NDA

· Lunch break

· Chat with Product Marketing

· Chat with Technical Support

Also at the event the Vanguards were now issued a new benefit for enhanced technical support priority.

The Vanguard Day concluded at 3 PM and that allowed attendees to attend a session and also the main expo hall opening. Before that time, guess what? Another rehearsal of the mainstage demo presentation.

During the expo hall opening I presented a vBrownBag Tech Talk: Veeam with SQL Server and Oracle – How to get along with DBAs. (watch video here)


We had 21 TechTalks in 3 different languages, which is awesome! The vBrownBag crew as tri-casting in 3 venues worldwide! VeeamON, OpenStack Summit in Tokyo and the vForum in Mexico City! Here is the playlist from the VeeamON TechTalks.

Tuesday 27-October – Sessions and Demo Time!

I started the day with another run through of our mainstage demo. There’s never enough preparation!

I had one breakout topic this day, “Top 5 reasons Veeam is for SMBs” this was a business topic, so it was easy for me to present and very little preparation was required on my part. I had one presenter from product marketing and also a customer sharing his story.

Then, it’s show time. The mainstage section is up today. I went into the green room and prepped with my peers and had a quick chat with Carl Eschenbach, COO of VMware. Nice guy! After he went live on stage, Luca, Mike, Clint and myself did final preparations. We were ready to rock it! Here we are moments before we were on.


Now the mainstage demo was indeed a team effort, but I must admit the overall idea came from me. I had a vision of the Trance All-Stars “Lost in Love” video from 10 years ago. This was a collaboration of many established DJs for a rocking song! While we don’t do something as cool as trance music (Well maybe Mike does!) we wanted to bring our technology in an interactive and exciting manner.

All of the demos were live, over the Internet from 3 different labs in 2 different countries. This was our introduction video (which I love!!!):


We killed it. Everything went off without a hitch, and it was within the time parameters. Even Gostev acknowledged we did a good job J

I went outside to watch the rest of the keynote, and then upstairs to the press room to do the total of 19 interviews over the next two days for the corporate communications team. Those went well!

After that was completed, I joined the Australia and New Zealand team for a special dinner at a Mexican restaurant.

Wednesday 28-October – More sessions and meetings!

I had two separate meetings this morning for breakfast (more press) as the afternoon blocks were full, busy days! I then attended the keynote and continued the meetings afterwards.

I then moderated a new format for a presentation: Ask the Experts, a Panel like no other! This session was of Luca, Tom Sightler and Andreas Neufert. Luca I’ve long thought is the most technical in Product Strategy, Tom is a principal architect for Veeam in South Carolina and Andreas is a Solutions Architect in Germany. I did this panel a bit different, I had a number of seed questions (only got to 3 of them) but had my cell number and Twitter handle on the screen and allowed attendees to Tweet or Text a question for the panel to answer. I also made all three answer, and saying “I agree with Tom” isn’t an option. They’d have to add “what to look out for” or “additionally think of this” type of stuff. I had around 30 SMS and Twitter responses, was an awesome format!

After this session, it was time to go to the Veeam Party. There was a small warmup in the expo hall with a band called the Explorers -> Made up of 4 Veeam staff! The party was indeed awesome, I was SOO HAPPY to see DJ and Drummer back again!


It’s really hard to explain DJ and Drummer, so it’s best to watch this quick video!

Thursday 29-October – Wrap-Up and meetings!

The final substantive day of the event saw me handle a few meeting topics internally to the core team and then attend the closing keynote with our celebrity guest, William Shatner. I also was allowed to pick 2 Veeam Vanguards to attend the meet and greet with Shatner and I had a chance to take this epic pic:


He was really happy to see me, so he put his hands in his pockets like me – trying to fit in and all!

I had a quick lunch then guess what? More meetings!!

I had then a dinner with the core team and called it a night relatively early. I had a 7 AM flight the next day flying LAS-MSP-CMH.


We pulled it off. Sure there are a few things we need to tweak, but it is a shorter list than last year. I find the biggest challenge is real-time communication and collaboration. My main involvement on the core team was around the topics of the breakouts. There were switches to rooms based on demand which was a challenge to operate, internally we had issues where people weren’t working from authoritative data. I told everyone often to use SharePoint!!! It’s the real-time source, but alas I get email attachments here and there; but that’s fixable for next time.

Speaking of which…..

VeeamON will next happen in 2017 in New Orleans May 15-18; so you’ll want to attend this.

How to restore a SQL Database–Easily!

I can’t tell you enough how much I like Veeam Explorer for SQL Server. It’s the topic of my latest blog post at the Veeam Blog. Keep in mind the Free Edition of Veeam Backup includes Veeam Explorer for SQL Server (but only the first option to restore the whole DB from the image is available there). Read the full blog!


Veeam Explorer for Oracleが新登場、既存のExplorerも機能拡張

お客様やパートナー様に最も好評を博した拡張機能の1つは、Veeam Explorerでした。これは、広く使用されているアプリケーションの高速リカバリを提供します。この数年の間で、驚くほど使いやすいVeeam Explorerは、MicrosoftのActive Directory、Exchange、SharePointおよびSQL Serverなどのクリティカルなデータセンター アプリケーションに対応してきました。今年後半にリリースされるv9には、新しくVeeam Explorer for Oracleが追加されます。さらに、既存のVeeam Explorerについても、新たにいくつかの大掛かりな機能強化が図られます。


Read the rest!

Removable storage devices: Is there a faster way?

There was a time where we used to burn optical discs such as CD-ROM media to move data around (that replaced floppies for some of us!). And then we got into the USB era and all types of storage options made it so easy to move data across systems or to carry with us in the line of being an IT professional.

Through the years, we have seen USB media become a standard of sorts for removable media on client systems, Windows systems in particular. It’s not without flaws but it has historically gotten the job done. But what about large amounts of data that resides on removable drives? Is there a better faster way to move and access data from removable storage? I believe so, meet Thunderbolt!

I recently had a chance to check out the new Thunderbolt Hard Drive enclosure by StarTech. This enclosure connects up to two disks via the new-ish Thunderbolt interface.


The Thunderbolt enclosure is tough, small and ready to be on the go.

Now you may have heard of Thunderbolt in the Mac OS circles, but you can get it for Windows client systems; and if you do – life is good. Why so? Well, Thunderbolt has a very fast transfer interface, up to 10 Gigabits per second. If you use Solid State Drives (SSDs) as part of your removable media, you may be missing out. Thunderbolt’s speeds can literally blow USB 3.0 (max speed of 5 Gigabits per second) off of the backplane; and only the newest USB 3.1 is speed on par with Thunderbolt.

You may have Windows client systems with DisplayPort interfaces, these look like Thunderbolt but in many systems only do video transfers. Thunderbolt, as a pure standards-based interface, can do storage device and video display. You can add a Thunderbolt controller to your Windows systems of interest (and many Mac OS systems have had Thunderbolt for a long time) to get high performance from you removable media. If you are moving large amounts of data and have invested in solid state drives, the StarTech enclosure with a controller for Windows systems may be something to consider. This enclosure in particular has the ability to hold two drives (it pops open and they mount inside) as shown in the figure below:


Add power and I/O and you are ready to go!

The notable miss here is that Thunderbolt is not catching on for server systems. The Thunderbolt controllers that are in the wild are all options for some PC new builds or a card you can add. Regardless of the hassle involved, if you want the fastest access to (presumably) fast drives such as SSDs; this is likely the easiest way to provide that high I/O. Add the occasional Mac OS system in the mix, and your high-speed interoperability challenges are made moot.

Have you moved to Thunderbolt for removable media on your Windows client systems? If so, how much have you used it? Share your usage strategies below.

Blog disclaimer: A review unit was provided for short term evaluation and was sent back.

Veeam Availability Suite v8: NOW AVAILABLE!

It’s almost too good to be true, but today is the day! v8 is out!

We’ve been promoting v8 for quite a while, in fact it feels like forever; but today it is a reality that you can have in your hands right at There are so many new features, it is hard to pick a favorite. But I’m thinking Veeam Cloud Connect is my favorite categorical new thing. Here’s a quick rundown of some of my other favorites:

  • NetApp Plug-In: Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots and Backup from Storage Snapshots for this popular array type on VMware environments.
  • Veeam Explorer for SQL and Active Directory: Critical application restores made very easy.
  • Encryption: Great way to secure data at source, in-flight and at rest with a key safeguard if you lose the password.
  • EMC Data Domain Boost: This is a real winner if you need to keep a lot of full backups on disk, DD Boost is an incredible ingest technique that will extend the source of the deduplication out of the target and do synthesized I/O on the appliance. Great stuff.

imageThose are just my favorites, but you should give a look at the What’s New Document. Yeah, yeah, I know it is 12 pages but it’s the best way to take all of the new features in.

We’ve put all of this and more at, so the smart option would be to spend some time reading all of the documents before just throwing v8 into production. You also could download the free edition or a trial and give the new features a try in an isolated environment. Note that if you have Hyper-V in your environment it’s a bit harder to “co-exist” on v7 and v8 simultaneously as the transport service and other components are installed on the Hyper-V host. So if you have Hyper-V in your environment, don’t upgrade (or even add a production host) until you are ready to do such. VMware environments can work side-by-side with v7 and v8 as the APIs don’t care who is doing the backup.

You may wonder, “What do I do if I want to upgrade?” Well, here are a few tips:

  • Start here for your upgrade.
  • Are you finally ready to go to Windows Server 2012? Maybe use the Configuration Backup as a mechanism to move your Veeam console to a new OS. (Or maybe make the console virtual from physical or the reverse)
  • Did you get your new licenses? You can login to the customer portal ( to get them.
  • Is there anything you want to ‘change” before your upgrade? Such as moving tape drives around or adding new storage or connectivity? Draw all of those changes up and then install the upgrade. Have a question: Ask me! (Twitter is best @RickVanover or comments below)
  • image

And of course there are more things to consider, but they all start to “depend” after that. I’m really happy that this is now available, our R&D and marketing teams have really put a lot into this release (and more is to come –> Just wait!!) and I’ll take a quick breath and then prepare for more. Oddly, I’m on holiday right now, and feel kinda bad being away from it; but the team is bigger now. With that, go forth and protect my friends! Let me know if you have any questions, comments or observations.

UCS is #1 in Americas and more!

imageOne benefit of being a Cisco Champion is the ability to get pre-release information of critical Cisco news. Just yesterday, I got an invite to a same-day embargoed content WebEx about some critical Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) news. Cisco UCS are more than just servers, their well connected and well managed infrastructure to deliver anything that may come across the wire in the data center of today.

In 2009 when Cisco entered the market with UCS servers I was rather uninterested, in fact I think I was interviewed by Beth P. at TechTarget and I may have used the word “temporary milestone” as at the time the UCS server came on the market with market leading RAM and CPU capabilities. Also at the time they were released, the UCS server had zero market share in a segment that has low margins (compared to storage), can be viewed as commodity and is very much a passionate topic in the datacenter as server admins don’t historically have the brand promise that network administrators have had with Cisco.

That was 5 years ago. With the news today, Cisco has gone from last to first in some key measures. The numbers come from the IDC Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker that is the basis for most of these statistics.

Here are some statistics from Cisco’s news today, I’ll share some selected slides (you can view them all here):


IDC  reports for the first quarter of 2014 (Compared to when Cisco UCS entered the market in 2009), Cisco UCS has a 40% market share in North America for x86 blade servers. Note that Cisco UCS also as chassis or “rack” servers, that’s the C-Series. The blades are the B-Series. 


The worldwide number for x86 blades has Cisco UCS at 26.3%, #2 position in just 5 years.

Market share is one thing, but growth year over year is also very intriguing. Look at this for server growth (not an IDC number, but a revenue interpretation):


Congratulations to the Cisco UCS team! This is an incredible accomplishment in a very tough market segment!

I believe there is an additional story here however. All C-Series and B-Series Cisco UCS Servers do one key thing: Offer unified fabric communication and management. This means they are more than just a server. What this means is that the market is responding, there is a shift and converged infrastructure solutions are not just validated, but market leading. I don’t see any data that puts the C-Series next to x-86 non-blade servers; so one can assume it’s not as good of a story as the B-Series (x86 blade) numbers above.

I’ve long evangelized the benefits of the Cisco UCS Fabric Interconnect, partly for my role at work where it works excellently for backups – but also because it is an awesome technology. The bigger story of ultimate connectivity, ultimate management and best of breed components top to bottom make Cisco UCS a solid compute platform. Dare I say the natural choice?