FREE: Unitrends Enterprise Backup Free Edition – Hyper-V and VMware backup

The free edition of Unitrends Enterprise Backup provides backup and disaster recovery services for up to four concurrent Hyper-V or VMware virtual machines.

Aaron Denton By Aaron Denton - Tue, November 6, 2012 - 1 comments

Aaron Denton has been working in IT for 10 years. He is a CCNP, MCITP, Enterprise Admin and Enterprise Messaging Administrator on Exchange 2007. Follow his blog itprostuff.

Unitrends Enterprise Backup already supports Windows Server 2012 which is what I used to review the software.

Install and setup

Installation was extremely easy. The installer creates a virtual machine on your Hyper-V server with appropriate hard drive and memory allocation to get started. After that, you simply need to specify some network configuration to make the web interface available. From that point on, all administration can be done from the web interface.

Setup at the web interface is streamlined when you are prompted by an initial setup wizard. Most importantly, the wizard helps you get your host added to the navigation pane so you can quickly get to scheduling backups. Although the wizard has several options for client types, the free version can only be used to backup VMs so make sure you select either Hyper-V or VMware. With all the options available, this may be a bit confusing.

Unitrends Enterprise Backup - Client add options

Unitrends Enterprise Backup – Client add options

Status

The status screen shows some valuable information to help you monitor the status of the client showing the size and numbers of files as well as others. Deeper insight can be gained by accessing the Reports. Unitrends Enterprise Backup comes with a lot of nice pre-built reports to help you keep track of your backup strategy.

Unitrends Backup - Status screenUnittrends - Available reports 2

Status screen and available reports

Backup

Performing a 1-Time Backup or scheduling ongoing backups is done with what I found to be a very simple to use interface. Bells and whistles are nice but sometimes it’s refreshing to use an interface that is organized simply and logically.

When setting up scheduled backups, you have a few choices to choose from that should meet your needs. Incremental Forever does a full backup and then incremental from then on. Full with Incrementals does the traditional Full backup at specified periods with incremental in between. There is also a Custom mode.

Unitrends Backup -1-Time-BackupUnitrends Backup - Scheduled-Backups

1-Time and Scheduled Backups

Scheduled backups also include retention settings on the same screen.

Archiving and tape

Archiving allows you to move VM backups to iSCSI, NAS, or disk. As with scheduled backups, archives can be done ad hoc or on a schedule.

Unitrends Backup - Archives

Archiving backups

Provisioning disks for archiving and is done by getting into Settings to add storage. For example, if you already have a working server with iSCSI targets and disks, simply punch in the IP address and then check Get List of Available Targets. This will retrieve a list iSCSI targets to choose from. Next you can check Get List of Available LUNs and select the appropriate LUN for your Archive.

Unitrends Backup - Archive Vault Storage OptionsUnitrends Backup - Add Vaulting Storage

Adding and confirming iSCSI storage

Restore

Again, the restore interface is simple and logical. Simply select the date, VM, and backup time and proceed. On the second and final screen, you can restore to the original location. You can also restore to an alternate path or alternate location to test the validity of your backups.

Unitrends Backup - Restore 1Unitrends Backup - Restore 2

Restoring to multiple locations

Other

Accessing the Settings in Unitrends Enterprise Backup provides access to a large number of other settings such as the configuration of iSCSI and NAS devices and System Monitoring.

Unitrends Backup - Settings

Settings

Conclusion

In conclusion, I found Unitrends Enterprise Backup Free Edition to be much more robust than I would expect from a free product. For a comparison with the other editions please check out this feature table.

Unitrends Enterprise Backup

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One Comment- Leave a Reply

  1. Adelino says:

    This could be a solution, but an expensive solution cause it’s “4 GB Memory for the virtual machine” are expensive! The backup runs on a VM and it needs many resources that a host cannot have.
    I had used others, like “Veeam Backup & Replication” tool that has a free version that is perfect to backup vm’s.
    There are others too, but Veeam backup has been the best and low-resource tool that a backup tool should be.

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