For a lot of companies, backup is running business as usual, with a few caveats. Companies really don't want to be deploying the backup client on the host machine backing up raw image files; they are typically deploying backup client software on each virtual machine itself. That aside, most SMBs start out with the same approach they've taken to backup all along.
The other impact is that it becomes easier for SMBs to deploy images or virtual machines (VMs). So, when you think about the C: drive image alone and 120,000 files per image, there can be an impact on the backup workload happening in the environment over time.
The proliferation of virtual machines in SMBs makes it much cheaper to provision a virtual machine or a logical server; therefore, the number of machines they are backing up might increase. What happens a lot of times with SMBs is that they continue to back up as they do now, with agents and the guest, but start to look at alternatives that sometimes lead to complexity and other issues they are not ready to deal with.
This was first published in June 2008