Zmanda Backup and Recovery Software Review | BackupPC

Zmanda Backup and Recovery Software Review

Editor's Rating

In our last few blogs, we focused more on consumer backups – with Rebit and Backblaze being our recommendations. Do check them out as they offer some amazing insights. This time, we are focusing on Corporate backups. This provides strong incentives for companies to ensure that they have backup solutions in place and with costs per GB’s becoming cheaper (4 dollars for 1 TB of data using Amazon Glacier), it is super easy and cost-effective to start a backup process.

This leads us to the main objective of this blog article – There are so many business backup solutions which fight for your attention stating they are the best for server backups. But which one can we trust with our data. Thus, we spent an entire day wondering which metric would be the most accurate measure for validating the credibility of the backup service. And the main metric we choose was, can we go through their code and understand how exactly the backup is being taken?


Can we go through their code and understand how exactly the backup is being taken? i.e. – was the software open source?


When the software is open source, we can go through it line by line and understand precisely how it manipulates the data being sent to it.  This matters as when we trust a company with our business data, it is critical to know if they have any backdoors through which they sniff our data.

Going through various product offerings – there are two that really stood out – Amanda and Bacula. We spend a lot of time auditing the features of both these amazing softwares and we felt Amanda had some interesting features. Here’s why:

  • Amanda has passed security audits by Homeland Security, which goes a long way to validate its credibility in security. Thus, for situations where data security is prime, Amanda seems like a platinum choice
  • All data backup happens in industry-standard formats – GNU tar for Linux and Solaris, Zip file format for Windows. This means, it doesn’t lock you into offerings and when you want to recover your data, you don’t need to be running Amanda. Any backup system can be used to recover your data. That’s very cost-effective and as a business user, you can carry forward that cost saving to your clients.
  • It also offers multiple options to store your data, which include, tape drives or disks or optical media. Interesting fact – Tape drives allow you to store your data at a very low cost usually averaging $8 per TB. Using an open-source software clubbed with a tape drive storage to back up the entire company data would be the most cost-effective backup system.

Amanda has a lot of strong points and more details that can be extracted from their site at However, Amanda is a command-line software and most users would always prefer a Graphical user interface to interact with the software. Addressing this issue, there are multiple companies which create UI’s around Amanda’s command line.

An additional feature of Zmanda is that it easily integrates with Amazon Web Service. Amazon web services is a hosting service provided by Amazon and over the years, it has become the world’s preferred web hosting service. S3 is a storage option provided by Amazon where the cost of 1 TB of storage is just 4 dollars. Storing all your company data on S3 would be a tremendous infrastructure cost saver for any company.

When we were about to wrap up this blog, we came across a piece of information that truly amazed us. The pricing figures of Zmanda are based on the number of servers that’s under its protection. That’s a different approach from the industry which charges based on the amount of data that’s being backed up. This ensures you always have a fixed predictable cost and when your company starts scaling, you don’t have to worry the backup costs increasing exponentially.

That’s all we have for this blog. Do tune into our channel to stay up to date with information related to backup systems and softwares.

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