I had a great chat with a Zerto customer while we were eating lunch at ZertoCon last week. The customer is an MSP that offers Backup and DR as services to their customers. The DR as a Service (DRaaS) is delivered with Zerto. MSPs are a large market for Zerto, the MSPs put their own brand over the Zerto product and provide DRaaS for their customers. The comment from the support engineer was that when Zerto reports a problem, then there was a real problem, rather than a Zerto software issue. The MSPs Backup as a service product used a different vendor’s product, and the MSP frequently had support calls open with the vendor to resolve the problems with the backup product. The MSP’s DRaaS engineer that I chatted with could not believe how often the backup team had to open support requests with the backup vendor. He seldom, if ever, opens tickets with Zerto. For enterprise customers, the reliability translates into less staff time to deliver consistent DR using Zerto.
The headline feature of Zerto 7.0, released this month, is long term retention. Previously Zerto would retain recovery points for a maximum of 30 days, and now retention is a policy set by the customer. Recovery for up to 30 days meets most DR and backup/restore requirements, but not compliance and archive. With long term retention Zerto can be used for all of the “bad things happen” use cases that I outlined a few months ago. I wonder whether that MSP will deprecate their backup as a service and rename their DRaaS as “data protection as a service” when they upgrade to Zerto 7.0. Unifying back and DR makes a lot of sense. A single “copy” action from production can satisfy both requirements; then policies determine which copies go where and how long they are retained.
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