$1.66B Real Estate Leader Sees 10X SQL Dedupe, 75% Gain in Backup Success

Hassle-free backups free IT team for strategic priorities

Challenges

  • A 55% backup success rate across three legacy products
  • Hours of daily struggles with backup
  • Poor support for incumbent solutions
  • A 24-hour RTO

Solution

  • Consolidated from three products to Commvault Complete™ Data Protection
  • Teamed with Commvault Professional Services for a collaborative approach

Result

  • 97% backup success rate – a 75% improvement
  • Storage cost-savings with a 5X deduplication rate globally and 10X for SQL
  • 1 hour or less of daily backup management time – down from four to six hours
  • More time for strategic activities – and greater job satisfaction
  • RTO reduction: down from 24 hours to one hour for disk and four hours for tape
  • A 9X drop in tape data storage for less overhead

Industry

Real estate data and analytics

Location

Washington, D.C.

URL

www.costar.com

In Numbers

  • Employees: Nearly 5,000
  • Locations: 75 offices in 13 countries
  • Annual revenue: $1.66 billion (2020)

The Backup Environment

  • Commvault Complete Data Protection in five data centers
  • Backing up VMware, SQL servers, file servers and Microsoft Exchange
  • Replication between data centers and Amazon Web Services (AWS)
  • 3,000+ backup jobs daily
  • 133 TB of backups daily across 700 clients

In Search of Scalable, Reliable Backup for Growing Data

While managing backup is part of Oje Alexis’s job, it began to feel like his whole job.

“Every day was fighting fires,” says Alexis, senior systems engineer at CoStar Group. “That’s literally all I did for about two years. It got to a point where I had no confidence in our ability to protect our data.”

CoStar leads the market in commercial real estate information, analytics and online marketplaces. Ranked 29th on Fortune magazine’s annual list of the 100 Fastest-Growing Companies, CoStar reported 19 percent revenue growth last year. The company’s ever-expanding data sets strained its previous backup solutions: Veritas Backup Exec, Quest vRanger, and Idera SQL Safe Backup. On average, backups succeeded only about 55 percent of the time.

And unfortunately, Alexis had little confidence in getting help from the legacy vendors. “I knew the product better than the support team,” he says.

Backup success rate: up from 55% to 97%

From Three Backup Solutions to a Single Screen

Alexis and the team began their search for a new data management solution with partner CDW and a review of the solutions on the Gartner® Magic Quadrant. They chose to evaluate Commvault, EMC and Veritas Net Backup against their wish list of requirements.

In proofs of concept, Alexis said Veritas Net Backup felt overcomplicated while EMC never succeeded in actually backing up data. Meanwhile, a demo of Commvault Complete Data Protection clearly showed the solution could meet the CoStar backup needs while also reducing complexity.

“We saw how simple it was to set up a quick backup,” Alexis says. “With Commvault, it’s all right there on one screen.”

Comparatively, EMC would require five different screens to configure a backup job. Already, Alexis and the team had been toggling between several screens across its incumbent solutions.

Quick, Actionable Insight

Teaming with Commvault Professional Services, CoStar devised a way to cover its very segmented network and ensure backups didn’t traverse the firewall.

The company now replicates backups between multiple data centers. They back up file servers directly to cloud with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and additionally send auxiliary copies to the cloud. For a few critical resources, CoStar retains tape copies on-premises.

With Commvault dashboards and reporting, Alexis gains quick insight into critical factors such as data growth, license usage and inactive clients. With actionable data from Commvault, the team can shift resources or stop backing up machines no longer in use.

In a refreshing change, Alexis knows that seasoned support is just a call away.

“Commvault support is collaborative,” he says. “We work together toward a solution. It’s a huge difference.”

“Because of the huge improvement in backup with Commvault, my job role has changed. I went from putting out fires to being more of an architect.”

– Oje Alexis, Senior Systems Engineer, CoStar

Now: ‘More of an Architect’ with Commvault

By moving to Commvault, CoStar saw the backup success rate jump from around 55 percent to 97 percent.

The company also condensed 11.2 PB of data down to just 2 PB of disk space through deduplication. On SQL, however, they’re gaining a 10X deduplication rate.

“Without deduplication, there’s no way we could manage 11 petabytes of actual data on disk for backups,” Alexis says.

With Commvault, CoStar saw RTO drop from 24 hours to just an hour for disk and under four hours for tape.

Most noticeable, however, is the impact to Alexis’s workday. Instead of six hours a day troubleshooting storage, he spends an hour or less – and sometimes has nothing to troubleshoot.

“Because of the huge improvement in backup with Commvault, my job role has changed,” he says. “I went from putting out fires to being more of an architect.”

Storage savings with a 5X deduplication rate globally and 10X for SQL

Commvault Complete Data Protection

A single, powerful solution for data protection – wherever your data lives.