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15 upgrade FAQs for Veritas Backup Exec 15

Security | Posted on May 12, 2015 by Emily A. Davidson

If you’re considering Backup Exec 15, this blog post has (almost) every detail you need to know in 15 questions. I parsed through Veritas’ documentation to provide the top 15 things you need to know about Veritas’ latest release. So let’s jump right in.

Editors note: We now have an upgrade page for Veritas Backup Exec 15 with resources, an upgrade preview and all of your upgrade options.

1. What is Backup Exec 15?

Veritas Backup Exec 15 is a single solution that delivers flexible backup and recovery for virtual and physical environments. With intuitive wizards, insightful dashboards and fast backup and recovery, Backup Exec enables you to improve your backup performance, meet recovery objectives, reduce management costs, secure confidential data and eliminate traditional backup complexity.

2. When will it be generally available?

The target release date was April 6, 2015. Get the announcement here.

3. What new features/enhancements are included in Backup Exec 15?

Platform Support for VMware’s Software-Defined Data Center

  • vSphere 6
  • ESXi 6.0
  • vCenter 6.0

VMware Software-Defined Storage

  • Virtual SAN 5.5 and 6.0
  • Virtual Volumes

VMware Hyper-Converged Infrastructure Appliances

  • VMware EVO:RAIL

Enhanced Scalability and Performance

  • Granular recovery for VMware Virtual Machines with GPT disks
  • Granular recovery for VMware Virtual Machines with >2TB Volumes
  • VMware Virtual Machine SAN transport mode restore, leveraging high performance storage
  • VMware Virtual Machine SATA Disk support in HotAdd transport mode
  • Improved user interface performance and reduced memory usage (by as much as 90%) when browsing large directory structures


  • Support for vSphere 6 security certificates

Upgrades and Migrations

  • Faster upgrades and migrations by maintaining single backup policies for multiple servers, and their configuration settings when upgrading from Backup Exec 2010-R3-SP3, and later.

For a full list of new features in Backup Exec 15, please visit: In addition to the new features/functionality in Backup Exec 15, Veritas added support for the following platforms:

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) Storage Gateway Virtual Tape Library (VTL)
  • VMware vSphere 5.5 U2
  • ESXi 5.1 U3
  • Exchange 2013 Cumulative Update 7
  • Microsoft SQL 2014 as a repository for the Backup Exec database deployment
  • Enterprise Vault 11.0.1
  • Oracle 12c for Windows and Linux
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7.0
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6.5
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 12
  • Oracle Enterprise Linux (OEL) 7
  • Open Enterprise Server (OES) 11 SP2
  • SCOM for 2007 and 2012
  • Simplified disaster recovery (SDR) support for Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows 8.1 client
  • Kaseya RMM platform support for 7.0 and 8.0 for Backup Exec 2012, Backup Exec 2014 (Note: update planned for Backup Exec 15.)

4. What is the biggest opportunity with this release?

Veritas’ capacity based offerings provide you with an easier way to manage Backup Exec. The Capacity Edition Lite offering is a more affordable solution for small to medium sized businesses that want to start out small, and need a “pay-as-you-grow” model. There is a way to upgrade active maintenance to either Capacity Edition Lite or Capacity Edition via special SKUs.

If you are running an older version of Backup Exec, you’re missing out on the advances in capability and performance that Backup Exec has made over the years.

If you have an expired maintenance contract or are running an older version of Backup Exec, this is your opportunity to renew your existing contracts and have a look at any new licenses of Backup Exec 15 including the new Capacity Lite offering. Backup Exec works seamlessly with new or refreshed Windows servers, applications, and VMware or Hyper-V virtual servers to round out a complete (and well protected) solution.

5. How is Backup Exec 15 licensed?

Flexible licensing options for on-premise software include Capacity Edition or new Capacity Edition Lite offerings that are scalable to accommodate data growth and licensed per front-end TB! This is a nice change from traditional licensing of per server, socket, host, device, and/or user pack; depending on the agent or edition.

6. Who should use Backup Exec 15?

Capacity Edition Lite is perfect for small businesses that have simple needs for physical or virtual, Windows and Linux, 1-3TB of data, and 3-6 servers.

Capacity Edition Full targets mid-market clients with more advanced or complex environments that need the Centralized Administration Server option or deduplication option. You should have physical and virtual needs, and require support for Windows and Linux, 3-10 TBs of data, and 6-20 servers.

7. Were any features removed or capabilities removed from Backup Exec 15?

Yes, Installing Backup Exec 15 as a backup server on a 32-bit Windows Server is no longer supported. However Veritas will continue to protect 32-bit Windows physical and virtual machines, which have the Backup Exec Windows Remote Agent installed. If you need to migrate from a 32-bit Backup Exec Server to a Backup Exec 15 64-bit Server, please refer to this how-to article from Veritas.

8. How will I receive this version if I’m current on maintenance?

Because Backup Exec 15 is a full new build, it will not be available via Technote or LiveUpdate. Veritas wants customers to log into their MyVeritas Portal and navigate to the Product Information page to access the download file.

9. Is there a fee to upgrade?

If you have active maintenance, you can upgrade to the appropriate Backup Exec 15 licenses at no additional charge. If you do not have an active maintenance contract or if you’re looking to switch from a competing solution, you can purchase Backup Exec 15 and SAVE up to 35% off MSRP by contacting your Softchoice Account Manager or email

10. What is the earliest version of Backup Exec that allows for a direct upgrade to Backup Exec 15?

If you are using Backup Exec from 2010 R3 or newer you can simply install version 15 over your existing versions of Backup Exec. Note: Backup Exec will automatically migrate existing Backup Exec related data from versions 2010R3 and higher to version 15. For clients who are using Backup Exec 12, 11d, 10d, 10 or older versions (including agents/options), we recommend that you step upgrade to 2010 R3 SP4 or 2014 then proceed to upgrade to Backup Exec 15. This will allow you to preserve your backup jobs. Alternatively, you could uninstall the previous version and install Backup Exec 15 but backup jobs would have to be set up again.

11. What about backward compatibility with Backup Exec 15?

  • Backup Exec 2010 R3 and lower serial numbers and Backup Exec 2012 serial numbers and Veritas License Files (SLF) will not work in Backup Exec 15.
  • Backup Exec 15 is backward compatible with Backup Exec 2010 R3, Backup Exec 2012, and Backup Exec 2014 agents/ options.
  • Backup Exec 15 Server can manage Backup Exec 2010 R3, Backup Exec 2012 and Backup Exec 2014 remote agents.
  • Backup Exec 15 Central Admin Server Option (CASO) can manage Backup Exec 2014, Backup Exec 2012 SP4 and Backup Exec 2010 R3 SP4 Managed Backup Exec servers.
  • New Backup Exec 15 features or agents/options will not work on earlier versions.

12. Do I have to upgrade all agents/options at the same time when I upgrade the core media server to Backup Exec 15?

You do not. You can upgrade remote agents (Linux, Windows, and Mac) and Managed Backup Exec Servers on a schedule that works for you, however, you still need to input Backup Exec 15 serial numbers to activate remote agent/media servers installed from a previous version. Important note: you will not have the complete set of Backup Exec 15 improvements until all remote agents and managed servers are upgraded.

13. Where can I find free trials?

Absolutely. Veritas provides 60-day, fully functional trialware so you can experience the benefits of Backup Exec. To download a free 60-day copy of Backup Exec including all agents and options, please visit 

14. I’m an existing Backup Exec customer. How do I evaluate non-licensed agents and options?

A feature within Backup Exec allows clients who have already purchased Backup Exec to evaluate most non-licensed Backup Exec agents or options available, free for 60 days. This list includes, but is not limited to the agent for Applications and Databases (which includes Exchange, SQL, Active Directory, etc); Agents for Linux or Macintosh; and such options as the Deduplication or NDMP Option.

There are a wide variety of Backup Exec training courses available to help you quickly become a Backup Exec expert.

For details view the Veritas Backup Exec 2015 Administration training courses page:

15. What is the Backup Exec Tech Center? Where can I find it?

The Backup Exec Tech Center is an online education service that provides an extensive collection of short, on-demand modules designed to help you quick-fix problems; plan, install and manage your environment; and get the most out of Backup Exec. Plus, it’s completely free! For more information, visit:

What you can do right now – visit our upgrade page

For more information on how Softchoice will help you upgrade to Backup Exec 15 within your budget, visit our upgrade page for more resources and to reach out to us for a free consultation!

If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below and we will reply!

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