Veeam founders launch Object First – for Veeam

Veeam founders Ratmir Timashev and Andrei Baronov have launched Object First to provide on-premises object storage facilities for Veeam backup.

Timashev and Baranov founded backup supplier Veeam in 2006 and it grew rapidly on the back of server virtualization. There was no external funding until Insight Venture Partners injected $500 million in January 2019. Veeam was subsequently bought by Insight Venture Partners for around $5 billion a year later. Baronov left in February 2020 but Timashev stayed on as a contracted consultant and is still listed as such on LinkedIn.

Object First came out of stealth at VeeamON 2022 with a functioning appliance. In a VMblog, Anthony Cusimano, director of marketing for Object First, said it “provides primary target object storage for Veeam,” in the form of a hardware device that fits in a rack, and software.

Rear of Object First appliance with lid removed. It shows two CPUs. The entire device is shown below.
Video screen grab of Object First device.

This device is accessed using Amazon’s S3 protocol and is owned and stored locally. It offers immutability, claimed instant recovery and security. Object First will work solely with Veeam Backup and Recovery release 12 (VBR12) which can write to an S3 object storage target.

With VBR12, Cusimano claimed, “Object First can be up and running and storing Veeam Backups immutably in under 15 minutes.” It uses the equivalent of the AWS S3 Object Lock technology for immutability and this is built into the box. Immutability can be set to last for up to 999 days.

Why S3 object storage? In Cusimano’s view, “We see object storage as the untapped resource of the future. When properly utilized, it helps mitigate ransomware, brings universal simplicity into the storage space, and delivers ease of scale without the pain of breaking the budget.”

There is a YouTube video of VMBlog interviewing Cusimano at VeeamON 2022 in Las Vegas in May. 

Cusimano video at VeeamON 2022.

In the video Cusimano says “We offer a target object appliance [which will] allow Veeam backup users to write direct to object storage on-prem.” The video shows a 3 or 4 RU rackmount box.

Cusimano says the key differentiators include “the affordability of the device, paired with security, paired with performance.” The device delivers more than 1GB/sec of throughput on a single node. Cusimano demonstrated setting up an Object First device cluster, thus implying that it is a scale-out system.

Object First screen shot of setup process.

Object First is part of the Veeam Technical Alliance program and has a website which is basically a placeholder, offering you the chance to be on its mailing list.

Object First website.