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Nakivo Backup and Replication 10.6 review: The backup host with the most

Ideal for SMBs that want the best features and host platform support

The Nakivo user interface
£525 Enterprise, 5 servers, perpetual, exc VAT
  • Unparalleled support for host platforms
  • Simple file and folder recovery

There's a huge choice of backup products suited to small and medium businesses (SMBs), but Nakivo's Backup & Replication (NBR) stands out as it supports more host platforms than any other solution. As well as versions for Windows, Linux, VMware, Nutanix and AWS EC2, there are packages for all the big NAS vendors and even one for Raspberry Pi. 

Client support is good. Although macOS support is missing, NBR can protect Windows and Linux servers and workstations, VMware, Hyper-V and Nutanix hosts and business apps including Exchange and SQL Server, with NBR 10.6 adding Microsoft 365 (MS365) Exchange Online, OneDrive and SharePoint Online (Teams support will be in version 10.7). Choices for backup destinations are equally impressive: NBR supports any local storage on the host, CIFS/NFS network shares and tape plus Amazon EC2/S3 and Wasabi cloud repositories.

Licensing looks complex, but Nakivo provides a handy calculator on its website. We've shown the price for an Enterprise 5-server perpetual licence. You can opt for ones based on workloads or virtual host sockets, while MS365 licensing is separate, can be combined with any other licence and costs £96 per year for ten users.

We tested NBR on a Synology DS1621+ NAS appliance and used the DSM 7 Package Centre app to install it in two minutes. NBR comprises three service components: a Director for browser-based management, a Transporter to handle all backup, replication and recovery operations, and a repository to store backups. We used the web console to add protected systems to its inventory, and our physical Windows servers and workstations had the Transporter service pushed to each one. For our VMware vSphere host, we provided admin credentials and its VMs were presented ready for agent-less backup.

The Nakivo user interface

A default local backup repository was created on our NAS during installation, and we could easily add more local, network or cloud stores and enable data reduction, encryption and self-healing. Ransomware protection is provided for Amazon cloud storage, and NBR had no problems using our S3 buckets with Object Lock enabled. 
Securing our MS365 account required a special SaaS repository to be created on the NAS appliance. The authentication process is pleasantly swift, requiring only three steps, and we then created a single scheduled job to protect our MS365 Exchange Online and OneDrive user accounts.

Backup jobs cover all protection essentials. You choose systems from your inventory, select a repository, apply a schedule and set the number of daily, weekly, monthly and yearly recovery points you want retained. When creating jobs for our VMware vSphere host, we selected the host system itself so any new VMs would be automatically protected.

File and folder recovery is simple. You select a recovery point and choose the data you want restored. MS365 granular recovery allowed us to select Exchange Online or OneDrive accounts, choose items and restore them to their original location or to another user Application-aware backups ensure hosted SQL Server and Exchange apps are automatically included, and recovery services extend to restoring SQL databases and Exchange objects.

Disaster recovery features are excellent and include replication of VMs as clones and using a Flash VM Boot recovery job to quickly create a new VM directly from the backup repository without restoring it first.

Nakivo Backup & Replication 10.6 is remarkably easy to deploy and use, client support is extensive and the various licensing plans mean you only pay for what you need. Furthermore, support for all the key players in the NAS appliance market will appeal to SMBs as they can create a centralised data protection and disaster recovery solution at an affordable price.

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