Zetta Blog

online backup speed

Zetta vs. MozyPro: Is Online-Only Enough

by Laura Knight

If you follow us, you know that one of our favorite topics is backup speed. The reason for this is that speed is a vital component of successful backup; your backup speed determines how quickly you can be ready for disaster, how much data can fit in your backup window and, consequently, the total viable size of your cloud backup dataset.

We’ve long argued that a backup appliance is detrimental to fast, easy backups, and a recent third-party speed test against a leading backup appliance confirmed it. But we’re not the only no-appliance cloud backup solution in town. Sure, most of the others started life as consumer products, but is “enterprise-grade cloud backup” just a marketing term anyway? Is any online-only backup solution good enough for business?

As talk remains cheap, we commissioned another speed test to get some real answers (spoiler alert: the real answer to both questions was “no”).

Speed Showdown: Zetta vs. MozyPro

We asked Mediatronics to conduct another speed test similar to the appliance test, this time versus online-only backup vendor Mozy (a subsidiary of EMC). The test compared the 4.7 release of Zetta DataProtect to MozyPro, Mozy’s business offering. Once again, the test consisted of making an initial backup of a 490GB server image, followed by an incremental backup at a 5% change rate.

So how did it turn out?

As you may recall from our previous post on speed testing, Zetta completed the initial 490GB server image backup in 2 hours and 56 minutes, followed by completing the incremental backup in 1 hour 7 minutes. When MozyPro went through the same test, it took 116 hours and 48 minutes to do the initial backup. That’s almost 5 days. The second part was also unpromising– it took 11 hours, 9 minutes to complete a 5% incremental backup.

After the backup had been running for 24 hours with no sign of stopping, Mediatronics actually paused the test and called Mozy tech support to make sure there wasn’t a problem with the setup causing slow performance. Mozy support confirmed that the setup was correct, and also pointed out that Mozy offers a preseeding service for larger datasets. Since we were testing the speed of Mozy’s cloud backup, not the efficacy of the postal service, preseeding wasn’t going to help.

All told, the initial MozyPro backup was 40x slower than the initial Zetta backup, and the incremental backup was 9x slower. Eek.

Incremental Backups: Smaller Numbers, Bigger Impact

While the initial backup results were more dramatic (Five. Days.), it’s the incremental results that are ultimately the problem. While we argue that preseeding should be unnecessary, it IS still an option for large initial backups, and ultimately a one-time thing. The incremental backups, on the other hand, are the performance the customer has to live with while they use the product.

How quickly incremental backups can be completed directly corresponds with the size of dataset you can protect via cloud backups. For example: Let’s assume a business’s overnight backup window is 12 hours, and its daily data change rate is 5%. The maximum amount of data that can fit in the backup window will be 5% of the maximum dataset size the business can protect in the cloud (for much more detail on this, check out our recent entry on 200TB in the cloud).

What does that mean for our test results? If it takes almost an entire overnight backup window to run a 5% incremental backup on 490GB, then 490GB is essentially the maximum amount of data that the backup solution can protect in the cloud (at least at that change rate). For many if not most enterprises, a half-terabyte of protected data isn’t going to be nearly enough.

Appliances may be decidedly suboptimal for backing up to the cloud, but as the speed test results show, every cloud backup and restore solution is different from the next - and they are certainly all not created equal. Always make certain a potential cloud backup vendor can actually keep up with the needs of your organization (shameless plug: free trials are great for this!). If you’re an enterprise, chances are you need backup that’s enterprise-grade.

Laura Knight
Laura Knight

As Content Marketing Manager, Laura writes, edits, designs and is always on the lookout for new ways to tell the Zetta story.