BackupExec vs BrightStor ArcServ

We are going to be purchasing either BackupExec or ArcServ for our backups. Both look to be excellent products. Wondering if anybody has experience with both and if there are any significant differences between the two. We are running all 2003 Servers with XP clients. We also have a SQL Server but no Exchange. Obviously whatever I purchase I have to live with so I figured I'd ask the experts in addition to using the trial versions of both. Thanks in advance.
dnagmourIT DirectorAsked:
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LucFEMEA Server EngineerCommented:
Hi dnagmour,

Both are excellent programs with their own advantages and disadvantages. Personally I switched from ArcServ to BackupExec two years ago, mainly because of the easier logfiles to see what has gone wrong in case the backup fails. (like said, this is a personal oppinion)

>>I figured I'd ask the experts in addition to using the trial versions of both.
Personally I'd say this is a bad thing, see for yourself, that's what trial versions exist for, you can try before you buy, especially with programs as expensive as this you'll surely want to make sure you can manage it yourself.


Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
I've used both - though it's been QUITE a while since I used ArcServe (2000 was the last version I used) and Veritas 8.6 - though I did try 9.0 - which was utter cr*p.  

Personally, I think I prefer ArcServe.  Here's why:
ArcServe (based on the old versions I've used) records file catalogs in a database file that, when you go to restore, allows you to "right click" the file and see all the previous versions of the file recorded (basically all the previous backups).

Now, Veritas has changed a few things in 9 and 9.1, so the other features ArcServe does no longer matter as much, but, I liked how they properly reported backup jobs as completed, incomplete, or failed.  Veritas (pre 9.x), reported the backup job failed if it missed 1 file out of a million.

Overall, they're both decent products.  Veritas makes the built in backup software included with Windows 2000/2003/XP Pro.  ArcServe reads both Veritas and ArcServe formatted tapes.

Veritas Support is probably a little better - not a fan of CA's support.

Basically, I'd say it's a toss up for most people.  I'd recommend, if you can, download both and install them.  Both, I believe provide 30 day evals - Veritas might be 60 and at least with 8.6, allowed a 3 month extension if you called them.

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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Incidentally, I switched from ArcServe to Veritas unintentionally because of a Recommendation from Dell when were were experiencing throughput problems that were at first attributed to ArcServe, but later proved to be the Adaptec SCSI driver.
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Duncan MeyersCommented:
FWIW - I reckon that its either/or. They both do what they set out to do. I prefer Backup Exec - but that is what I use most. I have no particular feelings for or against ArcServe.

>9.0 - which was utter cr*p.
Amen to that!!! Fortunately, Veritas released 9.1 and fixed the problems in 9.0. Backup Exec 9.1 works well and is pretty robust. I particularly like the IDR (Intelligent Disaster Recovery) option.

Steve McCarthy, MCSE, MCSA, MCP x8, Network+, i-Net+, A+, CIWA, CCNA, FDLE FCIC, HIPAA Security OfficerIT Consultant, Network Engineer, Windows Network Administrator, VMware AdministratorCommented:
For my 2 cents worth.  I was using Arcserve in a production environment a few years ago and it was a pain when it came to restoring data.  The backups were fine, but setting up restores, getting calalog's etc. were such a pain.  I switched to Veritas and have been using it ever since.  I think the capabilities are about the same, but when it came to restoring data in a production environment when the drive was trashed, Veritas was much easier and faster for me.

dnagmourIT DirectorAuthor Commented:
Thanks to everyone for the input. I really do appreciate it. My experiences so far lead me to Veritas. I will keep using both for a while before making the final decision. Thanks again.
     I'm looking at the same decision that you had to make.  I also will have 3 Windows Server 2k3 with XP and 2k clients.  Using SQL Server and no exchange server.  I currently have both (one on each server) and I want to get all of my servers backing up on one tape.
     I'm also looking at backing up all of my clients periodically and ARCserve told me that I can do that with their product without purchasing anything more than the Server Product.  With Veritas, I have to purchase the clients.

Which did you end up choosing and how is it working out for you?
dnagmourIT DirectorAuthor Commented:
In the end I wound up with BrightStor ArcServ. It was the best fit for me and turned out to be a little bit cheaper. I use the Agent for Open Files as well as the Sql Agent. There was quite a learning curve in the beginning but now it all runs very smoothly. I have a report of backup jobs waiting for me each morning. I take a quick look to make sure all ran like I expected. Periodically I run a restore for piece of mind. Its a good solid product. Good support too.

When I purchased the product they had a promotion for a 250 license copy of Backup for Laptops and Desktops for free. I would double-check their licensing to make SURE there isnt any addtn'l cost. Hope this helps. I will be glad to answer any other questions you have. Just let me know.
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