Network Administrator at City of Greenville
Real User
Enabled us to migrate to our new VMware 7 environment within a matter of hours
Pros and Cons
  • "The ease of use is one of the best features. Previously, we were using Site Replication Manager with VMware and it was a little bit cumbersome. With Zerto, we liked the fact that it was hardware-agnostic and we were able to spin it up pretty quickly and get it working."
  • "We had a situation where we had to relicense VMs once they were moved over. We later found out that that feature is built-in, but it's not easy to find. The way it's done is that you have to go to the target site to turn it on. If that were explained a little bit better up front, that would be helpful."

What is our primary use case?

We work in a public safety environment and we use Zerto for disaster recovery.

How has it helped my organization?

It allowed us to migrate very quickly from our old environment to the new environment that we're building out. We were able to move the entire environment over to our new VMware 7 environment within a matter of hours.

Because we work in a public safety environment, we can't have downtime. We've had a couple of situations where we had to do some firmware upgrades. We would fail over to the DR site and Zerto helped us get back up really quickly. It was fast.

We set it up strictly for DR so that we can fail over and do a test failover without causing any problems.

And from the standpoint of ease of use, Zerto is a third faster for recovery compared to other solutions.

What is most valuable?

The ease of use is one of the best features. Previously, we were using Site Replication Manager with VMware and it was a little bit cumbersome. With Zerto, we liked the fact that it was hardware-agnostic and we were able to spin it up pretty quickly and get it working.

What needs improvement?

We had a situation where we had to relicense VMs once they were moved over. We later found out that that feature is built-in, but it's not easy to find. The way it's done is that you have to go to the target site to turn it on. If that were explained a little bit better up front, that would be helpful.

Buyer's Guide
Zerto
May 2024
Learn what your peers think about Zerto. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: May 2024.
787,560 professionals have used our research since 2012.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Zerto for four or five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It seems to be very stable. We haven't had any problems.

How are customer service and support?

My counterpart is the person who takes care of this side of things, but from what I've heard, he's had really good luck with their tech support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We used VMware's SRM. That old solution was a little bit cumbersome and Zerto seemed to be easier to use. It was more straightforward. It was much quicker to set up and the day-to-day use is easier.

How was the initial setup?

I was involved on the VMware side, getting things ready for Zerto. My counterpart was the one who actually implemented Zerto. I believe the Zerto implementation was pretty straightforward. The only complexity involved was learning how it worked.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Sr Manager IT Infrastructure at a transportation company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
The replication increases our DR capabilities
Pros and Cons
  • "From a management perspective, one of the biggest benefits is to see the excitement of your engineers having a tool that truly enables them, really making their lives easier. That is something that I love. When we came out of the PoC, their eyes were just wide with excitement of what was possible now."
  • "They could iron out the licensing aspect of it, so we might be a bit quicker when implementing and starting to use it."

What is our primary use case?

We are using it to decommission a data center, then moving the data over to other data centers that will still persist within our environment. Also, we now have a more robust disaster recovery for a lot of our non-vital, non-critical applications.

How has it helped my organization?

From a management perspective, one of the biggest benefits is to see the excitement of your engineers having a tool that truly enables them, really making their lives easier. That is something that I love. When we came out of the PoC, their eyes were just wide with excitement of what was possible now.

What is most valuable?

The replication would be the best feature. It increases our DR capabilities. We put a lot of time and effort into DR overall. For the amount of time that it takes to test and go through those activities on a regular, recurring basis, well, this cuts down on the time commitment, not just by the infrastructure team, but by the application teams and all their peripherals. Even just from a man-hours perspective, it is a huge cost savings. You cut down three hours per application, and an application has anywhere from three to 12 developers plus others who support that application. So, you are probably looking at 20 people times three hours, then times however many applications we have, which is in the thousands. That compounds pretty quickly.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been officially using it for three weeks.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It seems as though everything on the scalability factor checks out. However, we will see that very soon in our use case.

We have thousands of applications and servers. There is an exorbitant amount of data. 

How are customer service and support?

The support that came in and engaged with us, setting us up through the PoC, were fantastic. Coming out of it, I already have five engineers who have gone through multiple levels of certifications. So, it appears as though that technical expertise, to be able to improve themselves, is right there at their fingertips. It seems highly available. I would rate them as nine out of 10.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We have used Site Reliability Manager (SRM), which is capable, but to a lesser degree. Zerto is 10 times to 100 times easier to use. It is amazingly fast.

How was the initial setup?

I was not involved in the initial setup or deployment.

From the team, the deployment was very straightforward. The proof of concept that we ran took a little over a week. They were able to stand it up from scratch, deploy, and run several tests of varying complexities. Everything went smoothly. We put a contract and agreement together in record timing for our company.

What about the implementation team?

We had a terrific hands-on proof of concept with the Zerto team, where they came in and worked with our infrastructure engineers. Our engineers were completely amazed by the solution's capabilities. As quickly as we could get our licensing in place, we did. Now, we have had our licenses assigned for the last two or three weeks.

What was our ROI?

From our perspective, we are already thin-staffed as it is. So, Zerto has allowed us to focus on other things that are equally important.

We have not been able to apply ROI yet, just because of our circumstances. We are waiting on teams to move out of the data center. However, we are now poised and ready. Once that onslaught of requests come in, that is when we will really see the return on it.

If you are a numbers person, the benefit far outweighs the cost from any other competing software or service provider. When you are talking about trying to keep a reduced amount of engineers in the happiest state possible in their work environment to do the workload that they had traditionally done with double the amount of people on their teams, this tool relieves all the stress that they are carrying with them on a daily basis, even though they don't have to implement it on a daily basis. I have seen that firsthand. That return on investment is almost invaluable.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

They could iron out the licensing aspect of it, so we might be a bit quicker when implementing and starting to use it. At the same time, our sales rep and all the supporting team members from HPE and Zerto were great and very flexible. It is hard to be critical of that.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We have not done another valuation recently. Zerto was the first in quite some time.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate this solution as nine out of 10.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Buyer's Guide
Zerto
May 2024
Learn what your peers think about Zerto. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: May 2024.
787,560 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Manager System Administrators at a financial services firm with 51-200 employees
Real User
Decreases the time it takes to recover and the number of people needed to do so
Pros and Cons
  • "Zerto is so easy to use that when I showed it to my manager, he said jokingly, 'Huh. I could use it myself, I don't need you.' Zerto is most elegant."

    What is our primary use case?

    It's deployed on private cloud. I have two data centers, one in New Jersey, one in Ohio, which is my job site. I'm using a Zerto instance for my servers and another for my VDI machines. I can replicate everything.

    How has it helped my organization?

    When COVID started, everybody started to work from home and the internet connection to our New Jersey data center was saturated. But we had the same internet connection in Ohio, so why not use it? We needed to spread the load between data centers, so I used Zerto to failover 60 of our 175 users in New Jersey to Ohio, and they were able to work for nine months from Ohio. They were able to connect to their machines from home via Ohio, and it worked perfectly. Later, when we realized that the COVID situation would continue, we increased our internet connection to New Jersey and, using Zerto, I migrated all 60 users back. When COVID happened, Zerto saved the day. We didn't have to stop our business for a minute. It was seamless.

    We also had problems, a few times, with SQL Server. That was pretty early on in our use of Zerto, and I used Zerto to recover it from our other site. We were on SQL on the other site for a week until they figured out what was going on and fixed everything. After that, I used Zerto and migrated back to New Jersey. That was a big save.

    When I started with this company we used the Double-Take solution. It was very cumbersome and very difficult and we could only back up some servers. And when something happened, we could only have a limited number of people connect. When we started using Zerto, I was able to give every user a machine. Everybody could now log in to their machines and see all the applications, everything the same as it was before. People couldn't believe that was possible. To do it we created a fully virtualized environment.

    In addition, we are a very heavily regulated organization because we're working under SEC guidelines. We have large institutional clients like Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. For them, we have to prove our resilience and our ability to work in any situation. If we cannot do that, they will pull their money out. We run DR tests and we share the test results with them. Our clients want to see them. We couldn't do that without this solution. Zerto gives us the easiest and the most reliable way to do it. When we ran DR tests before we had Zerto, it was always very difficult. It would take almost a day to bring things back. With Zerto, I can have everything back in 15 minutes. In 15 minutes everyone can connect and start to work.

    With our old solution, in a DR situation, we would need three system administrators working for hours before they got things to a point where a few people could start working again. And it took almost 24 hours to get everything back. And at the end of that time, we were exhausted. The first time we did it with Zerto, for practice, we clicked a couple of times and just sat back and watched.

    It decreases the time it takes to recover and the number of people needed to do it. We were planning to hire a person who would be dedicated to our DR solution, before Zerto, because that was the only way we had found it could be done. When we installed Zerto for a DR test, we were surprised how easy it was to do it. When we hired another system administrator, because we had grown as a company, I gave him something like a half-hour lesson on how to use Zerto and he started to use it himself.

    What is most valuable?

    The continuous data protection is very important. Even if it's synchronous, right now we are at seven seconds difference, so we practically have all our data available, always.

    Our old solution, Double-Take, required a lot of scripts and they were prone to mistakes. Zerto is so easy to use that when I showed it to my manager, he said jokingly, "Huh. I could use it myself, I don't need you." Zerto is most elegant. When I look at what's going inside Zerto, I see there is a ton of scripting but it's hidden from me. I just need to specify what I want to protect and where I want to protect it; very simple stuff. When they first brought in the solution, I saw what they were doing, how they were running all these commands, but again, I don't need to do any of that. If you do things right and you test it, it will just work with no issues at all. Nobody can come close to the elegance of Zerto.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using Zerto since 2010 or 2011. We got Zerto when it was at version 1.2. They had just started.

    I just upgraded to 9.0 U1. We ran our tests for IT a few days ago, because we made some network changes. And Zerto just worked perfectly.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    From what I understand, if instead of 15 servers you need to protect 100 servers or 2,000 servers, if you properly plan everything it doesn't matter how many servers you have. To bring back 15 servers or 115, 15 VMs for 115 VMs, there is no difference. It will take the same amount of time.

    How are customer service and support?

    Their technical support is great. When we have issues they work with us and troubleshoot until we figure out what is going on. I have no complaints. 

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    Initially, we used Double-Take on physical servers. We had five physical servers in our data center at that time. Later, we migrated all our servers from physical to virtual, using Compellent storage at the time. We were able to replicate our storage for DR, but it took a long time because there was a lot of manual work that was not scriptable. After that we found another solution, but it also required a lot of scripting and it was pretty cumbersome. It worked but it was pretty difficult.

    Finally, Zerto came to us and we tried it. It was just day and night, a big difference between the previous solution and Zerto.

    How was the initial setup?

    If you give me two Windows Servers, it will take less than 24 hours to replicate everything and you can already run a DR test. It's really amazing.

    Initially with Zerto, every time there was an upgrade, I practically had to do everything from scratch. I had to recreate the groups and everything else. It didn't work well and I told them, "This is a big issue." In version 5, I believe, they resolved this and I could pick up my environment and restore it. When I upgraded my Zerto from version 8 to 9, it worked great and automatically. After half an hour I was running a brand new environment.

    What was our ROI?

    Every single penny we have invested in Zerto has been worth it. It has allowed us to grow our business and acquire more clients. Our clients are very happy with our DR solution. That's why they give us more money. For a company like ours, the more money we manage, the more revenue we have. From that perspective, Zerto has paid for itself 100 times.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    It was a little bit expensive. It took a long time for us to get DR for our workstations. It's one thing when you have 15 servers, but when we needed to bring on almost another 200 users, and each was the same price as the servers, it was too expensive. But Zerto worked with us and gave us a solution that was pretty decent in terms of price. For my company, it was a good solution.

    We bought those initial 200 licenses and we pay for maintenance every year, but it's stable. We don't have any issues. We get support, we can upgrade to a new version when we want, and they will support the changes on the ESX host.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    I have looked at Commvault and HPE but I haven't found anything I like, so far, as much as Zerto.

    Initially, when we looked at some of the other solutions, before Zerto, we were thinking that we would have a special person who would constantly build scripts. But Zerto is so simple that I  don't spend much time on this side of things anymore. My manager said, "I don't need to worry if you go on vacation because I can just open the console and click 'Failover,' and that's it. Everything will be done in the background." Zerto is an incredible solution.

    It's not only about how much easier it is to install, set up, configure and, after that, run tests for DR. It also works. With previous solutions, DR tests failed a few times because they didn't work well or took too long. We would start a DR test at nine o'clock in the morning and we still couldn't bring things up until three in the afternoon. People couldn't wait that long. They hated those DR tests. Now, when we run DR tests at nine o'clock, everybody is back by 10 o'clock. We're really happy with this kind of scenario.

    When we talk to other vendors I say to them, "Okay, you want me to try your solution. Can you promise me, when it comes to DR tests or real DR, that in 15 minutes I can start to use my DR system?" They ask me, "Who gives you this ability to run in 15 minutes?" I tell them, "Zerto. I've done DR tests with Zerto for many years, and within 15 minutes we are up and running." They are surprised.

    What other advice do I have?

    The main thing to figure out before going with Zerto is, from a business point of view, what your company needs. What level of protection do you need? What regulations do you have to conform to? Can you survive with a seven-second difference in the data? Is 15 minutes enough or not?

    Also, you need to take into consideration, from the licensing perspective, not only the Zerto licenses, but that you need to have a license for ESX, vCenter, hosts, and hardware. You need to count everything before you decide to go with Zerto. In our case, we're doing private cloud, and we needed to build that private cloud first. You have to decide if that is workable for you or you're okay using Azure or some other public cloud provider. Once you work through all that, Zerto will definitely be very good for you.

    One issue we decided on, from a business perspective, was to divide our users into two groups: level one and level two. Level one users should be able to connect after 15 minutes and level-two users will be brought back after all level-one issues have been resolved, which should be within a couple of hours. When the business made that decision, we created the groups.

    We're also working with Zerto as a ransomware backup solution. Right now we are using seven-day journaling but we're putting it on external storage or cloud. We're thinking about a one-year solution where we can go back to any particular point in time, bring the server back, and get all the files. We upgraded our version so we can start to use external storage. Zerto is one of the greatest applications we have for security and vigilance.

    They did everything so well that I don't know how it can be improved. It's one of the best solutions among all the different components I have. I would rate most of the other solutions we're using between seven and nine out of 10. Only Zerto is a 10, along with my malware solution, Minerva Labs. Both companies are from Israel and I always grade both a 10 when I talk to others.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Private Cloud
    Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
    PeerSpot user
    Barry Bontrager - PeerSpot reviewer
    Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Manager at The First National Bank of Hutchinson
    User
    Flexible with easy integration capabilities and good restoration ability
    Pros and Cons
    • "It helps us keep our required retention period for specific documents and allows us to recover older documents if we have to compare and recreate those."
    • "We would like the LTR function to be able to retain the past 12 months."

    What is our primary use case?

    We utilize the solution for our primary backup and recovery source. We use VMware for all of our servers. 

    With the ease of integrating with our complete virtual infrastructure, it is nice that we can replicate easily between our HQ and DR sites. 

    The flexibility in utilizing the test environment to allow production servers to be test restored with no interruption to the actual production server in use is really nice for quick and efficient testing. 

    I highly recommend it for companies using virtual infrastructure.

    How has it helped my organization?

    The product allows us to restore to any given point within 15-20 second increments, including just files and whole servers. 

    It allows us to efficiently test restore and restore files that were accidentally deleted within seconds of the deletion, giving the option to have the most up-to-date file restored with little to no data loss. 

    It also allows reporting on the results of the testing, which can be provided really easily for board reporting, as well as auditing. There are many great features for sure.

    What is most valuable?

    The LTR function has by far been the best feature to allow us to retain our backups for at least a year. Also, it allows us to have full monthly and weekly incremental backups for that year, which can be restored or even just files from that period. It has come in handy for those accidentally deleted files. 

    It also helps us keep our required retention period for specific documents and allows us to recover older documents if we have to compare and recreate those.

    What needs improvement?

    We would like the LTR function to be able to retain the past 12 months. Before the update to version 9, we could do this in the GUI. I am hoping that in version 10 (which is on the roadmap to be installed), this feature will return in the GUI to provide an easy way to lengthen our retention. The journaling can also be a problem at times. Also, I'm not sure why, however, retention processes randomly fail and have to be rerun periodically.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We have been utilizing this solution since 2017.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Stafford Hall - PeerSpot reviewer
    Cloud Data Center Architect at Cable Bahamas
    Real User
    Our customers like the fact that they can restore within seconds
    Pros and Cons
    • "Another advantage is the ease of use. You can click through instead of typing in the code. It's all already scripted down to the network adjustments within the VMs and the timed delays for servers that need to come up in sequence. Overall, it's a good package for us to use. We started using it in about 2018 and haven't looked back."
    • "It would also be nice if you could update without having to download a new installation file for Zerto Virtual Manager. Within the app, it could prompt you to install and perform the installation from within the application. Generally, it's relatively easy to use, but it gets a little complex when customers have special network requirements and need to customize how long they want the save points to be retained. We need to work with the storage team on the backend to see what makes the most sense for the client."

    What is our primary use case?

    We're a managed services provider that uses Zerto primarily for disaster recovery as a service. We offer Zerto as a DR option for our clients. Our customers in the Bahamas need a DR option outside of the hurricane belt, so we have workloads throughout the world to ensure our customers have somewhere to restore from. 

    Currently, we run Zerto in a vCloud environment. All of the services are brought up in a vCloud environment. It saves us from having to constantly buy equipment. The vCloud environment enables us to spin up an environment as needed instead of having unnecessary hardware sitting there using resources.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We haven't had any major disasters that required us to use Zerto, but we perform two or three live failover tests with clients. Everyone seems to be pretty happy with the product and the turnaround time.

    It's all about client satisfaction. They may not understand the underlying tech architecture, but they want to know how fast we can bring the environment back up. We can achieve fast restorations and restore sections if needed instead of the entire environment. It's been a great experience for us and our customers. 

    What is most valuable?

    The RTO/RPO times are fast. The speed is probably the biggest selling point for us. It's not live replication, where you have two sites up at the same time, but our customers like the fact that they can restore within seconds. 

    It takes them nearly to the last point of connectivity, so it's seamless and easy to operate. It's easy to operate, and customers feel that they have a level of control. With some platforms, most things need to be done by the provider, but customers have a management platform in their environment. They can run tests without our direct involvement. 

    Another advantage is the ease of use. You can click through instead of typing in the code. It's all already scripted down to the network adjustments within the VMs and the timed delays for servers that need to come up in sequence. Overall, it's a good package for us to use. We started using it in about 2018 and haven't looked back.

    What needs improvement?

    We have an issue with the management platform because we don't always upgrade to the latest version, whereas the customers tend to constantly upgrade. Sometimes, we lose connectivity because something isn't supported. 

    For example, we have VMware version 7 update 3. This morning, a customer upgraded it without informing us. It's their responsibility to notify us because our environment is large, and we don't update every time a new version comes out. It's somewhat of a pain. 

    In addition to data, the other thing would be the hardware versions for VMware. I finally found a proper support matrix, but we ran into a few problems in the early stages. I don't know how to address this, but maybe when the version is going to update, the client could get a prompt saying that the cloud location is not on that same version. It would be a more efficient way to tell them instead of trying to figure it out. 

    It would also be nice if you could update without having to download a new installation file for Zerto Virtual Manager. Within the app, it could prompt you to install and perform the installation from within the application. Generally, it's relatively easy to use, but it gets a little complex when customers have special network requirements and need to customize how long they want the save points to be retained. We need to work with the storage team on the backend to see what makes the most sense for the client. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have used Zerto for about five years.

    How are customer service and support?

    I rate Zerto support nine out of 10. I haven't had any serious issues aside from the problem with version differences between a client's environment and ours. That is just a matter of striking a balance with the clients. An IT environment can't update too frequently because you don't want a change to break something. Unfortunately, you can't stop the customer. 

    Support has been good about helping us troubleshoot those issues. It's easy to run a diagnostic tool and get the file. It's difficult to pull down a diagnostic file in some solutions because you need to do it via a command line. With this, it's just a couple of options you select. You run a diagnostic, save the file, and send it. 

    How would you rate customer service and support?

    Positive

    How was the initial setup?

    I work on the cloud management side, so it was already deployed. I wasn't involved in deploying the cloud portion. However, I installed all of the virtual management for customers and set up the environment for them. That part of it was easy. It was a click-through thing. Most of the time, we'll guide the customer through the process, so they can see it as well. We show them the step-by-step process of performing the updates. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    Zerto is like a Ferrari. It's very fast but not the cheapest solution. You're paying a high price for quality and the assurance that you will have the environment up and steady. 

    There are tradeoffs, too. Our clients spend money on licensing but save on equipment. The customers could either buy a bunch of equipment or pay for Zerto licenses. That's where we come in. We provide you with a cloud solution that doesn't cost all this money upfront. The prices could always be better, but we don't complain so much about it because the savings come from other places.

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate Zerto nine out of 10. A lot of people are trying to convince us to look at VMware backups instead, but I don't see the urgency because Zerto works for us. I don't see anything on the market that can restore in seconds as opposed to minutes or hours. For us to switch, we would need something that beats Zerto. Right now, nothing beats it.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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    PeerSpot user
    Virtualization Manager at Teknor Apex Company
    Real User
    It gives us peace of mind that we can recover our systems in minutes or hours instead of days
    Pros and Cons
    • "Zerto has improved our restoration time and made it easier to test software upgrades. It has simplified tasks like decommissioning a site and replicating virtual machines from one location to another."
    • "Zerto is too reliant on VMware's vCenter. It's tough to upgrade, move, or do anything related to virtual servers with vCenter."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use Zerto for disaster recovery and DR testing.

    How has it helped my organization?

    Zerto has improved our restoration time and made it easier to test software upgrades. It has simplified tasks like decommissioning a site and replicating virtual machines from one location to another. 

    It gives us peace of mind that we can recover our systems in minutes or hours instead of days. Zerto is also helpful for insurance purposes. Our insurer wants to know how long we'll be down in a disaster. Of course, the company owners love Zerto because we won't lose business if something happens.

    When we had a firmware failure, it saved us time performing a failover to our DR site. It isn't easy to calculate, but it saved us days and possibly weeks of downtime. 

    A firmware update on our SAN went wrong, crashing the entire device. We're in Rhode Island, and it failed over to our DR site in Tennessee within 18 hours. Our users didn't notice because it happened on a Sunday. They had all their data when they returned to the office, and we reverted the following weekend. Without Zerto, some applications would've been down for days, if not weeks. 

    Zerto has also improved our DR testing. In the past, we had to test over the weekend, but we can now do it during the work week without any outages. Our IT staff doesn't need to come in over the weekends, so it doesn't affect their personal lives. Zerto has reduced our DR testing time by about 50 hours. 

    What is most valuable?

    The interface is easy to use. It's not intuitive per se, but the average IT expert will have no problems using it. A non-IT person might have a little difficulty at the beginning.

    I love Zerto's near synchronous replication because I can get up-to-the-minute data back in a disaster. This capability is essential because a disaster could cost the company money and even cause it to go out of business. We can sleep better at night knowing we can restore our systems in minutes.

    Surgical blocking of unknown threats is a feature that's available on the cloud, but we're on-premises. However, it's certainly a feature I'd like to have, especially with all the malware and vulnerabilities. It's great to know that Zerto offers this capability, but we don't take advantage of it because we're an on-prem customer.

    What needs improvement?

    Zerto is too reliant on VMware's vCenter. It's tough to upgrade, move, or do anything related to virtual servers with vCenter.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Zerto is highly stable. We haven't experienced any noticeable bugs. We're sometimes too stable. Sometimes I want to upgrade my VMware ESX host, and I can't because they have not approved it on their matrix. They usually take about a month or two to accept it as a supported system, which is probably the industry norm or better, but I want it faster. 

    How are customer service and support?

    I rate Zerto support 10 out of 10. Zerto's support team is knowledgeable and goes out of its way to help. Instead of just throwing KB articles at you, Zerto support walks you through the solution.

    How would you rate customer service and support?

    Positive

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We previously restored everything from scratch using tape backups, but we had no software disaster recovery solution. It hasn't replaced our legacy backup solutions because we do not use Zerto as a backup. Our hardware backups are still online and working. 

    We do not use Zerto as a backup solution. It is mainly for recovery. However, we use Zerto/Keepit for Office 365 backups. We still back up to tape and restore using Zerto. It has made the recovery around 20 times faster. 

    How was the initial setup?

    Deploying Zerto was straightforward, and I did the job by myself.

    What was our ROI?

    We've seen a solid return with Zerto

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    Zerto costs more than most, but we negotiated a fair price. 

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We have Veeam Backup and Replication, but we don't use it for disaster recovery. We also tried another solution for Office 365 backup. We prefer Zerto replication for the speed and support. 

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate Zerto 10 out of 10. When implementing Zerto, you should consider your internet speed and the difference between the WAN connections at the sites you want to replicate. You need enough bandwidth to handle the volume. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
    PeerSpot user
    Disaster Recovery Engineer at a tech services company with 501-1,000 employees
    Consultant
    Replicates and recovers within minutes and enables our growth
    Pros and Cons
    • "There are a lot of valuable features. The basics of what it does to replicate and recover things within minutes is awesome. It's far above anything that any of the competition has. We offer other disaster recovery software but primarily use Zerto for recovery times and the number of recovery points because of how fast and easy it is. It's so much better."
    • "The problem with the backup product is that it's not very mature and you really need a specific use case to be able to use it effectively. It's hard to explain to our customers, especially our large customers, that the use case is so limited."

    What is our primary use case?

    Our primary use case for Zerto is for disaster recovery. In the last few versions, they've offered backup, but we don't use it because it's not nearly as robust as what most of our customers are looking for. We also use it for migrations too, to migrate customers into our cloud, and things like that. But that's around 20% of our use case.

    How has it helped my organization?

    Zerto has enabled our growth. Five years ago we had around 20 customers and now we have 500. We protect around 15,000 VMs now.

    What is most valuable?

    One of the most valuable features is the analytics portal. It's still an evolving feature and has ways to go but we use that for monitoring because we have hundreds of sites. It's nice that all the alerts and everything is consolidated into that one site because we used to have to make sure that we were connected to many, many sites to make alerting work, which was a nightmare. 

    Our alerting is done through scripting too. They do have pre-canned alerting through but is not very robust and they're working on it. They actually included us in the study on it. For instance, if you were to have a problem at a certain site or something, there's no way that you could take it out of monitoring. If you were using their system, it would just flood you with alerts from all kinds of stuff from the site if it was down. It is great if a site is down and you don't expect it, but if you have planned maintenance, you don't want all of this coming in.

    There are a lot of valuable features. The basics of what it does to replicate and recover things within minutes is awesome. It's far above anything that any of the competition has. We offer other disaster recovery software but primarily use Zerto for recovery times and the number of recovery points because of how fast and easy it is. It's so much better.

    We reduced the number of people involved in recovery situations by using Zerto. We had another solution before and we had a small number of customers and it took the whole team to manage 20 customers. Now we have 400 to 500 customers and our team is relatively the same size. We're broken up into different teams, but when we managed it all ourselves with only 20 customers, we had four people. And now we have around 500 customers and we have around 20 team members.

    What needs improvement?

    Zerto has a really robust PowerShell and scripting that you can get lots of numbers out of but it's not exactly the easiest thing to do. Zerto has a few nice pre-canned reports but there is a need for more. Unless you script something, it's difficult to go in, click a button, and see the information that you may be looking for.

    The problem with the backup product is that it's not very mature and you really need a specific use case to be able to use it effectively. It's hard to explain to our customers, especially our large customers, that the use case is so limited.

    Zerto is very easy to use on the surface, especially if you're an enterprise customer, which is just like A to B replication or one site to two sites. As a cloud provider, they still have a lot of work to do. But for most customers, it would be fantastic. We have a lot of private clouds that are one site or two sites. So when it's not meshed like our larger environment is, it works fantastic. But when you get into the overall fully meshed model with vCD integration that we have, it doesn't work as well. I think Zerto is mostly concentrated on the enterprise customer and left the cloud providers by the wayside.

    With the HP acquisition, product development has certainly accelerated. They recently released the first major half release and have put additional focus on cloud providers. Unfortunately, the major focus remains on Enterprise. Next year, they will force customers to move from Windows management VMs to Debian Linux. I can only hope they have a well-thought-out migration tool. My fear is that the cloud provider will be a secondary thought once again.

    The major issue with Zerto development is that they refuse to patch the current software release and only patch the newest release. When you hit the bug, they expect you to upgrade right away. This is not an issue if you only have a hand full of sites. The issue when you have 100s is that there is no way to skip a minor release. Every multi-tenant customer you have must be upgraded to every minor release. Two to three upgrades every year for every customer is very intrusive and requires way more management effort than should be necessary. We often have a hand full of customers delaying the upgrade cycle and are forced to discontinue service to those customers. HP can surely develop a better model.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using Zerto for six and a half years. It's deployed on-premises, on the cloud, and we use it as a SaaS offering. We are the cloud provider. We also integrate with AWS and Azure.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    It's a very stable solution, for the most part. They have a new release every six months and some releases are better than others as far as bugs. Sometimes those bugs have to do with something in Hyper-V, and sometimes they have something to do with VMware or vCenter. But many times, it's directly related to Zerto's problems. Usually, their major releases go in .0 and .5. The .0 releases have the new features in them and they're more buggy and the .5 releases are more stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    It's extremely scalable, in a small sense, but the problem is when you get very meshed, with 10 sites replicating to 10 sites, and each one of them is meshed in to be able to replicate it to the other one. Then scalability starts to become problematic.

    The big thing is, we have a cloud manager that manages all our ZVMs, which enterprise customers probably wouldn't have. You can only upgrade half a release for each upgrade. So you couldn't go from Zerto 6 to Zerto 7. For instance, you have to go to 6.5 and then go to seven.

    Trying to upgrade is not easy because every customer that's paired and replicating into those sites has to upgrade it in those steps. It takes us several months, twice a year, to get everybody upgraded. They have a portal called Cloud Control which makes things better as far as upgrades, but they recently broke it with version 7.5 by adding encryption. So it was useless. We just upgraded to a version in which it should be working again, so the next time we're going to try to use Cloud Control to upgrade. Hopefully, it will be better. We only really have one round of upgrades through Cloud Control to get an idea of how well it worked. 75% of the time, those upgrades work without problems.

    How are customer service and support?

    There was a time when they had customer service people just taking tickets and they couldn't really help you at all, which was terrible. Now, they have a level-one level-two-type model. The level-one guys are getting better, but as they grow, it can be difficult. 

    All of our engineers are certified and we would like to go straight to level two. A lot of times we waste a lot of time with level one, and then they put the ticket in the queue for level two. So it takes another day to get to level two unless we're really loud and escalating the ticket right away. The biggest problem that we have with Zerto is getting to level two. 90% of the time, because of our knowledge, level one is not useful to us. Although, it probably would be to the average customer. 

    Zerto really needs support dedicated to CSPs and large customers.

    How would you rate customer service and support?

    Positive

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We switched from our previous solution because Zerto was so much easier than everything else that we saw. We have a team that does the tests. It was a pretty easy choice to move away from those platforms at the time and those platforms no longer exist. Today there are many alternative DRaaS solutions and we offer many of them. Zerto remains more mature and feature-rich than the competition though.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup was pretty easy. You have to have connectivity between the sites that you're replicating, your production, and then your DR site or sites. Getting that connectivity is the biggest thing. Once that connectivity is there, it's fairly simple. You deploy Windows VM, put a small software package on it, and then pair the two. You do the same thing at the recovery site and once those sites are able to talk. In VMware, you install a VM on each ESX host that you need to replicate a VM on. Then you create a policy to do that replication. The replication policies work very well. Re-IP on failover if problematic.

    The network connectivity takes the longest. It can take weeks, depending on what you have to do to connect the sites. It could be a couple of hours if you're just setting up a VPN. If you're putting in a circuit, it could take a very long time. That's the X factor with it, but assuming that's already there, within an hour you could be replicating data from one site to another.

    ZCCs remain a major stumbling block. If the routing table has issues, the only fix is to delete all protection, redeploy the ZCC and rebuild. Again, avoid Zerto Cloud Manager until the product matures.

    What about the implementation team?

    We implemented the solution in-house.

    What was our ROI?

    We have seen an ROI. Otherwise, we wouldn't keep using it. The biggest thing is the number of VMs we can support with the staff that we have. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The licensing is fair. We have an enterprise license in which Zerto gives us 20,000 licenses or something well above what they think we're going to sell for the year. Then all our customers pull from that pool and we resell the licenses. We may sell 50 licenses to a customer but at the start of their contract, they may only have 30 VMs ready for DR. We contract them for 50, but eventually, they'll get up to 50. So we don't have to go to the vendor and add and remove one license here or one license there all the time.

    That part of it is easy, but we do have to license all of our sites once a year, which is a pain and all of our sites report to Zerto Analytics. I've been asking them for years since they started Zerto Analytics, why we can't just put our license key on analytics rather than logging into hundreds of sites and putting them in each site. That's a real beast. They definitely need to fix the part where the site licensing is terrible. As far as the licensing VMs to replicate, that's great.  In version 9, Zerto plans on deploying a license server to address this.

    Zerto 9 is out and there is still no customer-deployable license server. We regularly have issues with customers who cannot reach the Zerto license server. They cut you off at the knees after 14 days! HP really needs to work on this process.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    Commvault was one of the big ones we looked at. Commvault is much more complex and expensive. We also looked at AWS and Azure. We offer a wide range of solutions. 

    Recently launched last year, Nutanix LEAP is primarily designed for people that use Nutanix, and not everybody does. Not everybody can use it. We also offer RecoverPoint for VMs. It is a Dell EMC product, so it's geared toward people that are running VxRail. And then there is vCloud Availability. You have to have vCloud Director on both sides and vCenter, which is not something that everybody has either. vCloud Availability monitoring is also a nightmare. Zerto is more the product of choice for most use cases. 

    What other advice do I have?

    Some of the biggest problems that we've had as a cloud provider are the vCD integration and the Zerto Cloud Manager integration. If you can avoid those two things, avoid them.

    I would rate Zerto an eight out of ten. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Hybrid Cloud

    If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

    Other
    Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor. The reviewer's company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
    PeerSpot user
    Paul Velasquez - PeerSpot reviewer
    Senior Engineering Recruiter at a manufacturing company with 10,001+ employees
    Reseller
    Top 20
    An easy-to-use solution that reduced our downtime and improved performance
    Pros and Cons
    • "The way we can use checkpoints from each VM to restore them is an excellent feature, and the replication is great."
    • "The solution is very expensive."

    What is our primary use case?

    Our primary use case currently is for replicating virtual machines on a production site and for backups. We also use it for onsite cloning, and we have a license that enables us to do that.

    We don't use Zerto in the cloud at the moment. 

    How has it helped my organization?

    The tool gave us a better way to respond to any problems on the production side and improved how we can recover. The recovery capability is the best part of Zerto.

    The solution reduced our recovery time objective (RTO) and improved performance on the IO by around 10%. When we implement failovers and synchronization to VMs with databases, we see a marked increase in performance.         

    The solution helped reduce our downtime. Before we implemented Zerto, my organization did a recovery that took four hours. Since implementing, the last time we did a recovery, it took one hour, so the solution makes recovery significantly faster. The cost of three hours of downtime to my company would be very high.   

    What is most valuable?

    The way we can use checkpoints from each VM to restore them is an excellent feature, and the replication is great.

    Zerto is easy to use, and it saved us five times in three years; on those occasions, we had problems with our VMs, and we used the product to roll back to a functional state or for failover, which resolved our issues. 

    Regarding near-synchronous replication, Zerto is the best application we have right now. We could get another solution to do the same job, but from a design point of view, Zerto is an excellent tool for replication and synchronization, and we don't have a problem with it.

    What needs improvement?

    The IT could be better; we have sectioned areas and databases for iOS, Windows, and Linux. Because the solution is centralized, each computer has the VMs from every section running.

    The solution is very expensive. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I've been using Zerto for three years. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Zerto is highly stable, and I rate it ten out of ten for stability. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    We didn't have to scale the solution, so I can't speak to the scalability. 

    How are customer service and support?

    I give the technical support full marks; it's simple to open a case and get a quick response from the support staff. We rarely experience issues requiring us to contact support as it is.

    How would you rate customer service and support?

    Positive

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We didn't previously use another solution of this kind. 

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup was straightforward; it wasn't complex at all. It was very simple to install and set up the replication, more so than other solutions. 

    The replication functionality is very user-friendly, so that was the easiest part. At the same time, the security aspect of the solution, integrating with our firewalls etc., was the most challenging element of the deployment.

    What about the implementation team?

    We carried out the implementation via an in-house team. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The cost is one of the only drawbacks of Zerto because it's very high, and the overall impact of the solution on our organization is relatively low. This is why we are trying to figure out if another product could fulfill the same role for cheaper.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We are currently evaluating Veeam, and how that would fit into our system, as many of our clients use it, so we wonder if it may be a better option for us.

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate the solution ten out of ten. 

    My advice to potential customers is to carefully determine the requirements for such a solution and how Zerto fulfills those. Some solutions do the same job for cheaper, so considering the price has to factor into the cost-benefit analysis.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: PeerSpot contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor. The reviewer's company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
    PeerSpot user
    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free Zerto Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.
    Updated: May 2024
    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free Zerto Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.