Dell pumps power higher for PowerProtect products

Dell has added faster PowerProtect appliances, enabled PowerProtect to back up all-flash PowerMax arrays, and introduced an AI copilot to help customers use its APEX Backup Services.

The company is basically making backup and restore faster and easier to use, pitching it as addressing the business use case of helping secure data in an era of increased malware risk.

Arthur Lewis, President of Dell’s Infrastructure Solutions Group, said: “With the exponential growth of data, generative AI (GenAI) presents organizations with opportunities to streamline processes, improve decision-making and drive innovation, but it also extends the attack surface for cyberattacks – especially with trained models, which are quickly becoming one of the most valuable assets for enterprises.”

APEX Backup Services are SaaS-based backup and restore facilities based on PowerProtect systems and Druva software that protect apps such as Microsoft 365, Google Workspace, Salesforce, and other cloud-based workloads, as well as endpoints and hybrid workloads. The APEX Backup Services AI is a GenAI copilot to help users access APEX backup services.

They can:

  • Request real-time custom reports, ask follow-up questions to refine report variables and act on AI-powered suggestions to remediate backup failures
  • Understand and improve their backup and security postures via assisted troubleshooting with simple written prompts, analyze logs, and troubleshoot errors 
  • Use intelligent responses with recommendations and best practices customized to their specific environments
  • Simplify admin operations, from creating new backup policies to triggering new backups of specific workloads

PowerProtect target appliances

Dell has given its top two Data Domain (DD) target appliance models faster CPUs to speed backups and restores.

Currently the DD target appliance series consists of the DD9900, DD9400, DD6900, DD6400, DD3300, and software-defined appliances with PowerProtect DD Virtual Edition (DDVE) for on-premises and Dell APEX Protection Storage for Public Cloud. 

The new DD9410 and DD9910 appliances have a 2RU enclosure, based on a Dell PowerEdge R760 platform with dual socket-supporting Intel Sapphire Rapids CPUs. They have more cores and memory to improve performance and scale, and are based on Data-Less head (DLH) architecture, which does not store any user data on the head unit’s internal drive. In both the models, the DDOS and Cache Tier are configured on the head unit’s internal SSDs. Both support 24x 2.5-inch SAS-4 SSD drives, as well as 8 TB HDDs. They come in normal and high-availability configurations.

Dell says there are three different storage tiers in these new systems:

  • Cache Tier – 3.84 TB SSDs (5 in 9410, 10 in 9910) in RAID 101
  • Active Tier – 8 TB HDDS in RAID 6
  • Cloud Tier – 8 TB HDD in RAID 6

For backup and restore operations, the DDR software fetches related metadata from the previous backup operation and stores it in the Cache Tier to accelerate high-performance hash lookups on the active backup streams. All user data is stored in the Active and Cloud Tiers after it is deduplicated and compressed.

Dell PowerProtect DD9410 and DD9910 configuration video
Dell PowerProtect DD9410 and DD9910 configuration video

The new systems each support up to eight DS600 disk array enclosure (DAE), which is a 4RU, 24 Gbps chassis holding 60x SAS-4 3.5-inch drives – 480 TB raw capacity, 384 TB usable. Note that in both the new models, two disk groups are required as overprovision disks.

The new products offer:

  • Up to 38 percent faster backups, and up to 44 percent faster restores 
  • Up to 11 percent less power consumed and claimed industry-leading 65x deduplication 
  • Up to 1.5 PBs of usable capacity in a single appliance
  • Replication of DD9910 is 58 percent faster than the previous model, DD9900
  • DD9910 supports 64 concurrent VM instant restores and supports 118,000 IOPS for instant access, which is 18 percent faster than for DD9900

Maximum throughput numbers, with and without DD Boost, for the DD9410, are 44 TB/hour and 75 TB/hour respectively. Maximum logical capacity, with and without the Cloud Tier, for the DD9410 is 49.9 PB and 149.8 PB respectively, and for the DD9910 is 97.5 PB and 293 PB respectively.

Download a DD9410 and DD9910 white paper here. Watch a configuration video here. Get the latest PowerProtect DD product line specs here.

Dell PowerProtect competitor Quantum has just announced all-flash target DXi systems. Competitor ExaGrid believes it is faster and cheaper than any all-flash backup target competitors.

PowerMax all-flash protection

Dell PowerProtect Data Manager now has native integration with Dell’s high-end PowerMax all-flash enterprise storage so that it can have its data protected via the Storage Data Protection agent. This is snapshot-based and provides backup and recovery for VMAX3 and PowerMax arrays by using DD series target appliances. Features include:

  • Backup and recovery of multiple storage arrays with up to 46 TB/hr for a single backup and up to 21 TB/hr for a single recovery 
  • Protection of Dell PowerMax with full restore to original or alternate PowerMax system
  • Data resilience through immutability and optional cyber vault integration
  • Centralized management and orchestration
  • Multicloud support for PowerProtect Data Domain replication and cloud tiering


  • Dell PowerProtect Data Domain DD9410 and the DD9910 systems are available globally
  • Dell APEX Backup Services AI is available globally
  • Storage Direct Protection for PowerMax will be available globally in the third quarter of 2024