NetBackup 5000 Specs
NetBackup 5000Last week we launched the first NetBackup hardware appliance called the NetBackup 5000 (and there will be more to come).  There are plenty of data sheets, presentations and webcasts but if you're a gadget geek you probably just want the quick run down on specs.
At a higher level, the NBU 5000 has:
- 16TB capacity extensible to 96 TB through a multi-node configuration
- A less than 20 minute setup time per node (we've seen it done as quickly as 5 minutes)
- Tape integration via NetBackup + built in replication for tapeless DR
- Compatibility with both NetBackup 6.5 and 7.0 environments


NetBackup 5000 without bezel

Basically you can buy 1 of these 4U boxes that holds 24 1TB hard drives and send dedupe data to it as a NBU Storage Unit in your existing environment OR you can take NetBackup PureDisk Clients and send data directly to the 5000 without going through a media server.  If you run out of room or need more space you can buy up to a total of 6 which would give you 96TB (6 x 16TB).  And best of all the dedupe works across ALL of the appliances even as you keep adding new ones.  It's something called global deduplication and has been one of the best parts of the NetBackup dedupe option in NetBackup 7.0 that is now available in hardware form.


The full rundown on specs:



4U (24 hard drive cages)


2 CPUs (4 cores)


24 GB (DDR2)


4 × 1Gbps


Bare Capacity (per node / per setup)

24TB (24 x 1 TB drives) / 144TB

Usable Capacity (per node / per setup)

16TB / 96TB


Backup Throughput

Up to 4.3 TB/Hr for each node

Power < 550 watts

And last but not least the back panel:

We're excited for giving people the best software on what we feel is the best hardware for it.  Lots of more exciting appliances are coming but check out the 5000 if you're in the market for some dedupe backup storage.


I was just wondering how you achieve 4.3tb per hour through only 4 1gbps ethernet connections.

Is this a deduped value or raw throughput. Or am i reading this spec incorectly?

The 4.3 TB/hr is what the total data protected by the appliance can do post dedupe

Joe, could you please tell how Technical Support (hardware part) works for this appliance?

I mean, when it comes to deal with the HW support - does Symantec do this, or some dedicated HW vendor? And what are the conditions?

Hey Volo,

The support is no different than any other Symantec product.  You call us to replace or deal with any hardware problems.  We can ship parts out, send a tech in, and even have call-home features on the box to deal with problems pro-actively.  The conditions depend on the support contract in place but even at all levels you're dealing with 100% Symantec and no one else.

Joe, thank you! Very informative and sharp Smiley Happy

Post dedupe means that once the unique data is identified the speed is calculated as the original size divide by the total time it takes to do the backup (this is common for dedupe throughput ratios).  It means you can effectively get a higher throughput than physically possible since the 4 1Gbps connections are actually handling less than 4Gbps.  They only take unique deduped data.  It is true that if there is no data to dedupe the box would handle much less than 4.3TB/hr.

Hi Joe,

In line with Paco Jones' question, what difference would it make whether the 4.3TB/hr (9.785 Gbps to be more exact) is a deduped value or raw throughput?

My understanding is that a 4gbps Ethernet can only handle a speed performance of up to 4gbps or less. But then, Symantec is saying that it can perform back-up throughput up to 4.3 TB/Hr for each node. How's that possible? Please elaborate and educate me regarding to your "post dedupe rate" answer.


Hi Joe,

Doesn't that suggest that deduplication is done at the source and not on the target appliance? (Because the appliance can only ingest data using 4 x Gbps)

It is possible with the NBU 5000 to dedupe at a client before sending data to it, at a NBU Media Server (and just use the 5000 as a storage unit) or on the appliance itself!

Wow! Amazing product.

Thank you very much for the insights Joe. More power to you and to NBU 5000.

Joe, can the NBU 5000 also serve as back-up server? And by the way, it can do both Inline and Post-process dedupe, right?

The NBU 5000 runs a build of NetBackup PureDisk so it can act as a backup server if you send data to it from PureDisk clients but it will not accept NetBackup Clients as a backup server (stay tuned though for an update..)

Technically the dedupe is all done inline with the 5000.  Storage and internal database updates are post-process.  Again, you can do client side dedupe if you use the PureDisk clients instead of the NetBackup clients.


I have been told that N5000 is configured using following items (some to be released soon):

  • The appliance (able to handle up to 16TB)
  • The NetBackup Deduplication option (per up front TB og GB)
  • The NetBackup standard client
  • More like service or integration.

I'm surprised that you said N5000 won't accept Netbackup Client.

Can you clarify this?


The NetBackup 5200 will accept NetBackup clients.  Basically:

-NetBackup 5000: PureDisk software inside, accepts PureDisk clients

-NetBackup 5200: NBU media server inside, accepts NetBackup clients

Both clients can do client-side deduplication and both the 5000 and 5200 can do server side deduplication.  So there isn't a loss of dedupe functionality between them.


Indeed, this clarify a lot. Thank you.

I guess the N5000 could be used as an OST dedup appliance from BackupExec

why not NetBackup server with Enterprise disk option?

It could be used as an OST dedupe appliance for Backup Exec although I'd imagine most people would choose the built-in BE dedupe.

The Enterprise Disk option is not a feature or product but just a licensing option.

Hi Joe,

The specs said that the NBU5000 can aggregate up to 4 media servers. but how do these servers communicate to the storage? is it separately? a single whole? or can do both depending how it's configured by the user?

I understand that Enterprise Disk is just an option (required to allow NBU7 to use OST apliances).

I a scenario where a customer own both: one BE server and one NBU server, both willing to take benefit of dedup on a N5000 (not 5200!) , I'm asking myself either or not, NBU could be provided with entreprise disk option so that to be able to 'connect' to N5000?

Hey John, The 4 media servers would communicate with it as a single whole if all 4 media servers were under the domain of 1 master server.  The NBU 5000 becomes a Storage Unit with a Storage Server and Disk Pools underneath.  This allows the 4 media servers to load balance and provide failover for jobs sending data to the 5000 but they all communicate together so that if it runs out of space or has errors the other media servers know what is going on.  You can configure specific media servers to only have access to the 5000 so depending on how you set it up you could divide the 5000 up.

Altimate1 - if someone has both a BE and NBU server they could certainly take advantage of the 5000 as a dedupe appliance.  You would need the "Enterprise disk option" so that NetBackup can connect to the 5000 though.


Thats a gr8 product. If possible would any buddy share a VDO on this product if possible. 

Hi Joe,

I'm currently assessing dedupe vendors and now down to choosing between two vendors: NBU 5000 and NearStore on FAS. However, I stumbled upon this article:


Now, i'm getting confused. You said that in NBU 5000, we can effectively get a higher throughput than physically possible since the 4 1Gbps connections are actually handling less than 4Gbps - and that's post dedupe. But how about for the undeduped? what would be the "true" ingest rate? Please enlighten me on this.




Hi Joe,

I'm currently assessing dedupe vendors and now down to choosing between two vendors: NBU 5000 and NearStore on FAS. However, I stumbled upon this article:


Now, i'm getting confused. You said that in NBU 5000, we can effectively get a higher throughput than physically possible since the 4 1Gbps connections are actually handling less than 4Gbps - and that's post dedupe. But how about for the undeduped? what would be the "true" ingest rate? Please enlighten me on this.

Technically the NBU 5000 is an inline dedupe solution according to Curtis's article there since we do the calculation in memory before storing it on disk.  I was refering to post-dedupe in terms of post (behind) the front of the network cards.  Frankly that's marketing fluff since the dedupe ratio influences the performance numbers.  So in general, the NBU 5000 is inline dedupe and the performance numbers are calculated after that inline dedupe finishes.


So can the 5000 run in an environment where NBU 7.0 Master is not present? Meaning a customer purchases the appliance and x number of PureDisk clients per front end TB or does a Master server need to be present? Please let me know.


Thank you,

My software product does disk to disk backup for IBM I (iSeries, AS/400) host computers, and writes to windows disk files. We connect to most other dedupe vendor's appliances thru CIFS.

Can I load PureDisk Client on my windows gateway server, and then write to the NetBackup appliance as a windows file share, and get dedupe?

We connet up to the IBM I thru 1gbit, FC (4 gbit usually) or 10GBE. Assuming the PureDisk client is the way to go, is it calculating a file hash on the server, and then the server says whether to send the raw data? (This would mean you would get higher throughput over 1 gbit). If not, can the 1 gbit ethernet ports be temed (or bridged, depending on your terminology)?

Can the NetBackup appliance be installed by itself, or do you have to have alll those media servers and other things Symantec uses?

My gateway applianceis windows, can the netbackup deupe server run as a vmware session under windows?

I hope that's enough questions for one post...

Approximately what does  the base level appliance cost in the USA? 10k? 50k? 100k?

Since the 5000 runs PureDisk software it could technically accept PureDisk clients without the need for a NBU Master or Media server.  The 5200 does require a Master server to be present however.

So with that being addressed. Can someone use the software on the 5000 to setup policies/schedules/retention for dedup backups? Is there a virtual lab setup with the 5000 interface software for partners and consultants to look at and/or test with? Please let me know.


Thank you.

Yes, there is a web UI that you can connect to the 5000 appliance and setup policies, schedules, and retention.  A lot of partners and SE's at Symantec have access to an appliance and we are planning some webcasts at that will go through the interface.

As a partner how can I obtain access to the appliance?

Your partner account manager or SE should be able to get you access.  If you want to send me a private message I can help you figure out who that is if you don't know them.  Thanks!

Great! I sent you a private message. I will be looking forward to your reply.


Thank you.

Ray - Joe is describing media-server deduplication.  So we dedupe the data before it ever goes through that ethernet pipe to the appliance.  That's why we can push more the 4GB of data through that line. How much more will depend on how much duplicate data exists in the data set.  

And just to clarify, this is NOT client-side deduplication b/c the data has traveled from a client to the NetBackup Media server. As mentioned earlier, the NBU 5000 can also receive data from a client-dedupe process as well.

Hope this helps.

Anyone familiar with PureDisk and Netbackup 7 Media Server Deduplication Pool can see what these are. 

The 5000 is single node PureDisk Storage Pool. (PDSP)

The 5200 is a Media Server Deduplication Pool. (MSDP)


These are basically separate products. 


A couple issues with a MSDP is each appliance is a storage island.

  • They do NOT dedupe against each other (global dedupe).
  • Only one MSDP can exist on a media server.
  • So clients backup with MSDP A can't be restored by media server B. Media server B can't access the storage A controls.

The terms in the documentation are all over the place! When using MSDP the additional media servers that access MSDP are called "accelerators" in many docs but sometimes they are referred to as simply Media Server, as in this screen shot.

The 5000 is a PureDisk Disk Pool. It runs a "custom" SUSE linux build and PureDisk 6.6.

These look like one large target of storage to NetBackup. All media server share the storage pool. The storage pool is globally deduped. 


Symantec has made an alphabet soup of this. NetBackup Dedupe uses the PureDisk technology, but PureDisk is a separate product. They don't make that clear. 

This is a better picture. 


Notice how the Media Server Deduplication Pool has one server with a line to the disk and all the other media servers are writing to that server to access the storage.

Then notice how all the media server are accessing the PureDisk 6.6 Storage Pool at the bottom of the page.  


Symantecs own docs are confusing on this point. Notice in my first post. The dotted lines from the media servers all go to the disk. This is wrong! One media server controls the disk, the other "media" accelerator servers write to that media server, who then controls the disk. As per pic #2.

Anyone who has ever walked into the wrong  restroom when visiting a foreign country can tell you the value of a clear visual.  Or a well-directed arrow.

Yup, Bartman, you’re right.  The second diagram is a better picture to explain the architectural relationships.

The linchpin in all these diagrams is two little square icons – the cog and the grid glyphs.   They are more than cute imagery -- they illustrate how we can do dedupe anywhere.   They also explain how any of elements you bring into your backup environment will work together to do dedupe, whether a NetBackup 5000, a NetBackup 5200 appliance, or your own provisioned media servers and clients.   Separate hosts.  Different operating systems.  Separate appliances.   But complementary.  That’s the key word:  complementary.   All because of the cog and grid.   Fault me for Monday goofiness, but I feel a “COG cog cog  c o g g g…”  and “GRID grid grid   g r i d d d d…” echo chamber sound effect coming on.

Let me filter out the deployment variations from the other pictures and distill the diagrams to the fundamental elements.   The cog and the grid are two complementary parts of the deduplication capability.  The cog represents the first doorway into deduplication system – where the bulk of the reduction occurs.  The grid represents the part of the system that manages the deduplication storage.  


The grid interacts with multiple cogs distributed throughout the system.  Cog software can activated on the client (at the source), can be activated on the target (co-located with the grid), or somewhere on the path between (that is where some of the confusion occurs imo), say for example on a media server that is helping with the load.

So, in answer to Brad’s question “Can the NetBackup appliance be installed by itself”  (yes, it can)  “…or do you have to have all those media servers and other things Symantec uses?”   No, you don’t.   They are optional ways of adding more cogs, additional power and efficiency.

For documentation, the holy grail is the NetBackup Deduplication Guide.  What I’ve briefly outlined here is really well done in Chapter 1, with lots of good figures showing each of the deployment choices and when each make sense. more resource for information.   In case you don't have access to the NetBackup Deduplication Guide, check out the Webcasts.   There are several on the dedupe appliances coming up in the schedule (Nov 30, Dec 14, Jan 11...)  Go to the link below to register.


Can we market this product in India.


My company is licensed for the "Netbackup Platform Base" and are currently looking to purchase the 5200 appliance.

Is it necessary to purchase the "Netbackup platform deduplication option add-on" to activate de-dupe on the 5200?

Or does the feature come pre-loaded and ready for use?




Yes, you need a Deduplication feature license to activate deduplication on the appliance.

As this thread is related to N5000 and to be more precise, you ONLY need deduplication
whenever you are considering using the 5000 as a PureDisk appliance.

Of course, if you what to use it from NetBackup, you should have a Netbackup license.
(either 'A la carte' or Terabyte) in addition to the deduplication license (respectively
dedup option or dedup add-on).

If you intent using the N5000 with BackupExec, you need a regular Backup Exec
 license with deduplication in addition to the Netbackup deduplication required for the N5000.

If you intent using the N5000 as a stand alone backup solution, you will need Netbackup Standard Clients
(one for each machine to be protected) in addition to the Netbackup deduplication feature. If you have
many 'clients' you can consider the Terabyte licensing so sa to be allowed to deploy as may clients as
you may need.