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The benefits of a third-party data backup reporting/monitoring tool

Curtis Breville explains the benefits of a third-party data backup reporting/monitoring tool in this Ask the Expert question.

What are the benefits of choosing a third-party data backup reporting/monitoring tool? Why not just use the data reporting tools that my backup software vendor offers?
In an environment with only one data backup software product in use, a handful of backup servers, and one or two tape libraries, the backup monitoring software provided by the backup software company can suffice. However, in larger businesses with multiple locations, multiple backup packages, libraries and backup target locations, a third-party backup reporting/monitoring tool would be a smart choice to save time and money.

I have spent a lot of time with a large telecom company using IBM Corp. Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM), EMC Corp. Legato, Symantec Corp. and a few others. They had multiple data centers and tape libraries from IBM, Quantum Corp., Spectra Logic Corp. and Sun Microsystems Inc. Plus, there were hundreds of backup servers in the enterprise. How does a large enterprise wrap their arms around the issues that arise with the backups and restores...

in such a diverse environment with different vendors?

The truth is they can't. Efficiency suffers and resources are wasted. A smart solution would be to use a third-party monitoring tool that supports all of the different backup applications. Companies of this size can see consolidated reports and be notified of issues all by the same monitoring system, regardless of what backup application is running or where it is located.

This was first published in June 2009

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