IT departments today are rapidly deploying virtualization technologies – in fact, Gartner reports that server virtualization is already over 60% penetrated and projects the market will be over 80% penetrated by 2016. With this rapid rise in virtualization deployment, customers are challenged to incorporate data protection and archive methodologies for their virtualized data. ESG recently indicated that 60% of virtualization technology users are planning to address challenges associated with data protection for their virtualized data as a top priority for 2013, an astonishing number. There are certainly lots of options available to protect traditional data, but virtualized data is a different beast. Another Gartner report identifies that over 1/3 of organizations will change backup vendors due to factors including cost, complexity, or capability. Based on what I’ve heard talking with customers, I would add one more factor: compatibility. In this article we will explore all four of these areas and suggest ways to overcome the challenges associated with virtualized data protection.