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NetApp Cloud Backup

Why Backup Should Be Your First Step to the Cloud

Everyone’s using the public cloud, right? You might be surprised, but the numbers tell a different story. Many companies still haven’t started using the cloud to store data.

What is preventing them from embracing the cloud? In some cases, the reason is that they still haven’t identified the right workload to migrate. That first workload should be cloud backup.

In this blog post we’ll look at why backup data is the ideal workload to migrate to the cloud and how NetApp Cloud Backup is the best way to help you do it.

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Who’s Using the Cloud Today?

Recent statistics tell us that 94% of all enterprises use cloud services, and just about half of businesses store their most sensitive data on the cloud. And we’re nowhere near saturation: the cloud computing market is expected to more than double its value by 2025, growing from $371.4 billion in 2020 to $832.1 billion, with a staggering 100+ zettabytes of data expected to eventually be stored in the cloud.

So why are there holdouts? There are a wide range of factors that can hold companies back from fully embracing the cloud, from insufficient resources and expertise, security and compliance risks, or the prospect of infrastructure sprawl. But in many cases—especially large enterprise-scale IT deployments—the complexity of the migration itself may seem too daunting to attempt.

Whatever is preventing your company from moving to the cloud, one solution to sidestep the challenges is to start small by moving a test workload to the cloud. And as it turns out, the easiest kind of data to use in such a test migration is backup data.

The Case for Migrating Backup Data

Since the earliest days of the cloud revolution, cloud-based backup and recovery have been prime use cases for migration. And the cloud-based backup and recovery market is still experiencing significant growth: according to the research firm Technavio, the market will expand by $14.6 billion over the next four years, at a robust CAGR of 17%.

Why is backup data such an attractive target use case to move to the cloud? The technology and business benefits that drive companies to move backup to the cloud are the reason:

  • It’s a safe test workload. Since backup data is essentially a redundant copy of the primary workload, migrating it involves fewer risks than moving a mission-critical application first off.
  • Reduced TCO. In the best case scenarios, backup data goes unused—but it still consumes storage space. In on-prem deployments, that requires CAPEX expenditures for storage appliances. The cloud trades CAPEX for OPEX and reduces your total cost of ownership.
  • Simple integration. Backup data stored in the cloud can easily be integrated with cloud-native applications, workloads, and services. This opens the door to learning how to use the cloud before your full migration takes place.
  • Automation. High levels of automation that ensure more reliable, less error-prone data protection—with no need for specialized IT skills.

The value of moving backup data to the cloud is clear and NetApp has an easy way for you to do that.

NetApp’s Solution for Moving Backup to the Cloud

If you are already using NetApp ONTAP on-premises data storage solutions, NetApp Cloud Backup is a fully managed SaaS that can help you take that first step into the cloud and easily get your backup data to object storage on AWS, Azure, or Google Cloud..

Here’s how the service helps meet cloud expansion challenges:

  • Maximizing expertise.
    The service is easy to deploy and operate since it’s fully integrated with NetApp Cloud Manager. It only takes a few minutes to deploy and set up, with no need to train dedicated backup project managers. Application owners can use it as easily as storage admins. Once activated, the service is highly automated and limitlessly scalable, requiring little or no maintenance.
  • Efficient resource usage.
    After an initial full backup, all subsequent backups are incremental forever at the data block level. Using NetApp’s proprietary SnapMirror data replication technology, after the initial copy is created only data that changes needs to move to the cloud. On average, the service uses 90% less network traffic than other leading backup solutions to the cloud, and the backups it creates are 10X faster. That means you never miss a backup window again. It also leverages NetApp’s industry-leading storage efficiencies (data deduplication, compression, and compaction) to significantly reduce backup storage footprints.
  • Security and compliance risks.
    Cloud Backup’s end-to-end security features. include:
    • Backup and restore data is fully encrypted both in transit and at rest.
    • Backups are always true individual copies, with complete separation of source and backup volumes.
    • Backups are read-only and immutable which prevents cyber threats like ransomware.
    • Highly secure archiving solution, with no data retention time limits.
    • Built-in data mapping with Cloud Data Sense to help monitor which on-premises data is being backed up in the cloud to aid with compliance.
    • Quick, granular restores at the individual file level, with zero RPO/RTO, and complete flexibility regarding the restore destination..
  • Limiting infrastructure and application sprawl.
    The service is API-based and fully Integrated with AWS, Azure, and GCP. NetApp Cloud Manager provides a single pane of glass for easily applying backup policies across your complex cloud infrastructure and diverse workloads. Highly flexible pricing options ensure that you can match the right licensing model to your current business needs: through the CSP marketplace (pay as you go, 12-month or 36-month subscription) or BYOL.

Watch this demo to learn more about how easy it is to deploy and operate, or you get hands-on right now with a free trial.


A cloud migration will transform your company, but it doesn’t have to happen all at once. In this post we’ve seen how starting small with a workload like backup data can make it easy to take a first step into the cloud while the rest of your deployment remains on-prem. Whether you take the next step is up to you, but to help you get started, NetApp Cloud Backup offers an easy way to migrate backup data to AWS, Azure, or Google Cloud.

If you’re using ONTAP, there simply isn’t a better or easier way to back up to the cloud. Want to see how?

Use this TCO Calculator to see how to improve your backup storage costs based on your unique usage needs and backup retention policies.

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Semion Mazor, Product Evangelist

Product Evangelist