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Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) Acquires VM Backup Software Provider, Trilead

Without any fanfare, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) quietly announced that it had acquired Trilead, a Switzerland-based software firm focused on backup and recovery of virtual machines.  Trilead's VM Explorer product is a virtualization backup solution designed to operate within VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V VM environments.

Trilead VM Explorer is currently offered in three versions: Free, Pro and Enterprise. 

The Free version backs up and restores virtual machines and can even backup VMs while powered on.  Additionally, it offers drag-and-drop copying of files between VMware, Windows, Linux and FreeBSD servers.

The Pro version is priced at $790, but takes things up a notch by adding interesting features and capabilities such as support for tape backup, incremental backups, offsite backup copies, file-level restore, automated backup tests, replication and cloud backup.

The Enterprise version is priced at $1,460, and adds advanced or more enterprise-ready features such as instant VM recovery, support for vMotion, file level restores from the cloud, Active Directory integration, Virtual SAN support, and backup encryption.

What's interesting is the way Trilead licenses the software.  The Pro and Enterprise versions are priced based on a single license needed per installation, regardless of how many ESX, Virtual Machines or CPUs are being used.  It's only the number of installations of VM Explorer you have which actually count.  In most cases, only one single license is required for an entire infrastructure.  It remains to be seen whether or not HPE will continue to sell VM Explorer, and if it does, whether or not they will continue to support this extremely liberal (yet very welcomed) licensing policy.

No matter which version is chosen, Trilead currently only provides email-based support.

Even though news of the acquisition from HPE was sparse, the company did offer a blurb about the acquisition on their official corporate Website Information Management page:

As part of our strategic focus and investment in virtualization, HPE has acquired Trilead, a next-generation provider of VM backup software that supports both VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V. Trilead provides HPE with a virtualized environment backup platform that is highly complementary with HPE's Data Protector suite. HPE customers can expect the same level of service and support with the enhanced capabilities that Trilead's technology brings to our portfolio.

So what does this mean?  Will VM Explorer remain a stand alone product?  Or will it roll over and get pushed up into HPE Data Protector?  Data Protector is a rather expensive and enterprise-focused backup solution that may be too complex and too costly for existing Trilead customers; and to date, it hasn't been positioned as an SMB market play by HPE.  So perhaps the company will rebrand and continue to focus VM Explorer as a viable offering to the needs of the low end SMB market who need the backup and restore capabilities and features but don't have the expertise or budget for something like Data Protector.

Whatever HPE's ultimate plans are for VM Explorer, it sounds like the acquisition could be more about HPE gaining Trilead's intellectual property and virtualization expertise rather than its customer base and financials. With the purchase, HPE will gain Trilead's development staff, which according to Trilead officials, "will continue to innovate and improve solutions alongside the HPE team."

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

** UPDATE Monday Feb 22, 2016 **

I spoke with an HPE spokesperson to get some additional clarification on the above.  And he provided some good news for Trilead users and SMB shops.

HPE stated:

VM Explorer will continue as a standalone product; it will not be merged into something else. The target market, SMB, remains the same and HPE will continue to advance the solution. In line with that, HPE are adding new resources to the development team to enable a faster pace of innovation, and we will be enhancing the Support offering with web and phone in addition to the current email support.

Pricing for annual support will actually be reduced compared to Trilead's historical offering, and licensing will continue to be very competitive.

Well done HPE.

Published Monday, February 15, 2016 3:28 PM by David Marshall
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HPE ?????????????????????????????????????????? Trilead ??????????????????????????? Backup ?????????????????? Virtualization – TechTalkThai - (Author's Link) - February 15, 2016 10:59 PM
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