System Center Data Protection Manager has been Fuse's recommendation for backing up SharePoint workloads for some time now. With the latest
cumulative update, released this month, some new features have been added which make complete DPM as a backup solution for SharePoint (along with a most of the other workloads in a typical datacenter).
DPM and SharePoint
DPM has always been able to do item-level restores of SharePoint farms it backed up to disk and tape through a simple interface that does all the heavy lifting of SQL restores and SharePoint exports in the background for you. This latest update extends support of the underlying SQL databases to those that are in a SQL Server Always-On group, which is now our high-availability solution of choice for SharePoint.
Secondly, it is now possible to use the Azure cloud backup feature of DPM to back up SharePoint farms offsite - this is a really useful feature, and eliminates the need for on-premise farms to rely on tape or off-site replication to have a complete DR solution. Azure backup storage is comparitively cheap, is encrypted, and you can restore back to anywhere with an internet connection.
The third major enhancement is that Azure can now be used as a long term backup destination - previously, when Azure could only be used for simple workloads, Azure was only available as a short-term backup destination (a few weeks at most). Now it's possible to retain backups in Azure for months and years.
In order to shorten the initial backup time for large farms, Microsoft also offer an offline transfer service to seed the first backup (subsequent backups are just differential) so there's really no excuse for not using Azure as a backup destination - and Data Protection Manager makes the whole process simple.
For a demo of using Data Protection Manager with SharePoint and Azure, please