NAKIVO Backup & Replication manages Hyper-V and VMware virtual machine disaster recovery and integrates with the Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) clouds. Learn what's new in the latest product version.

I've used NAKIVO Backup & Replication for several years now. In fact, you may want to take a look at my previous 4sysops articles on the product:

NAKIVO Backup & Replication is a cross-platform, enterprise-class disaster recovery solution. The product integrates with industry leading network-attached storage (NAS) and storage area networking (SAN) appliances, as well as both the Azure and AWS public clouds.

Today I'd like to review the new features NAKIVO added to their latest 7.4 product version. Let's get started!

Automated VM failover ^

One of NAKIVO Backup & Replication’s  biggest selling points is that the product  can perform VM replication, in addition to traditional image- and file-based backups and restores. The new Automated VM Failover feature means you can switch over Hyper-V and/or VMware VMs to their replicated versions with a single mouse click.

What's more is that the new Re-IP feature maps the primary and failover instance IP addresses automatically. I love that, because I know from bitter experience that IP addressing is one of the pain points of replication-based disaster recovery. I show you a diagram of Re-IP in the next screenshot (image courtesy of NAKIVO):

NAKIVO Backup & Replication failover IP address mapping

NAKIVO Backup & Replication failover IP address mapping

Automated self-backup ^

Who protects the protectors? Some backup administrators forget to back up the backup server. If that system goes down and you need to rebuild, you don't want to waste time re-creating your backup policies, storage targets, and so forth.

NAKIVO Backup & Replication v7.4 now includes in its settings the capability to back up NAKIVO Backup & Replication’s  own configuration settings and metadata automatically. I show you where the feature "lives" in the NAKIVO Backup & Replication console's interface in the next image:

NAKIVO Backup & Replication self backup is enabled

NAKIVO Backup & Replication self backup is enabled

Instant file recovery to source ^

You don't always need to restore entire VMs. I've found out the hard way what a pain it is to have to restore the VM's disks simply to pluck a few individual files from the VM's virtual hard drives.

Now, NAKIVO Backup & Replication offers an Individual Files recovery option whereby you can browse your backed-up VM's disks and retrieve particular file system assets. This is a much-needed new feature! Here's a relevant screenshot:

NAKIVO Backup & Replication granular file recovery

NAKIVO Backup & Replication granular file recovery

Bandwidth throttling ^

Nowadays, your line-of-business VMs likely weigh in at dozens and perhaps hundreds of gigabytes apiece. When you use the public cloud as a backup target, backup, replication, and recovery options can slow your company’s internet connection to a crawl.

In NAKIVO Backup & Replication v7.4 we now can throttle data transfer for both VMware and Hyper-V replication jobs. I'd imagine this feature will be available for all backup and restore operations eventually.

NAKIVO Backup & Replication job bandwidth throttling

Built-in chat with technical support ^

When you're in the heat of the moment, you may not have time to file a support ticket with a solutions vendor. In the current version, you can fire up a chat with a live NAKIVO support representative directly from within the management console.

NAKIVO uses Zendesk as its chat/incident management platform. I had a good experience with a live agent (I'm 90 percent sure it was a real person and not a bot, but you never know nowadays, do you?), as you can see in the following screenshot:

Live interactive support

Live interactive support

Global search ^

NAKIVO now makes it easy to locate any asset in your disaster recovery infrastructure. As you can see in the next screenshot, the management console has a global search option. The screenshot also calls out the location of the live support chat tool for your convenience.

NAKIVO Backup & Replication global search

NAKIVO Backup & Replication global search

Hyper-V screenshot verification ^

It's never optional to include periodic verification in your disaster recovery plan. NAKIVO Backup & Replication v7.4 can perform test recoveries of your Hyper-V VMs that perform the following automated actions:

  • Recovers the VM to a testing environment
  • Takes a screenshot of the booted OS
  • Discards the test-recovered VM

The advantage here is you can script this entire process to make verifications as frictionless as possible.

Instant VM recovery for Hyper-V ^

This feature is also called "Flash VM boot" and enables NAKIVO Backup & Replication to boot Hyper-V VMs directly from their compressed and deduplicated backup state. You may want to do this to test the integrity of a VM recovery or to run QA tests prior to moving the booted VM to your production environment.

Wrap-up ^

In summary, here are the properties why I think NAKIVO Backup & Replication is a quality product:

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  • Nearly equal coverage of both Hyper-V and VMware environments
  • Ability to perform backup and replication with a single solution
  • Seamless integration with Azure and AWS
  • Lots of automation and test/verification functionality

I suggest you download the free trial. Even there, NAKIVO keeps convenience in mind, offering you the "naked" installer or preinstalled, preconfigured disk images. Check out the pricing, and I hope you find what you need. Happy trails!

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