SMB adopts disk-based backup

By
Friday, 13 February, 2009


Like many small and mid-size businesses, Australasian Merchandisers reached a point where its tape backup system no longer met its rising demands for data protection and disaster recovery. Australasian is an importer and distributor of stationery products in Australia. The computer systems supporting its business operations were storing increasing quantities of file and application data. It needed to protect this data and ensure its availability, but the tape backup system it used was slow and prone to failures.

Backup jobs did not always complete. When data recovery was needed, it was a slow process from tape — if the correct tape was even in the office, since it moved tapes off site for disaster recovery purposes.

Australasian needed a faster, more reliable backup and recovery solution based on disk instead of tape. It also needed some form of disaster recovery protection. However, its budget was limited.

Australasian had been a customer of Hatfield Integrated Technologies, a systems integrator, since 1983. Hatfield partnered with DataStor Australia, a distributor of backup and storage technologies, to design and integrate a disk-based backup and recovery solution that also provided a secure method of off-site storage for disaster recovery. The solution consisted of a DataPort storage subsystem with mirrored, removable drives connected to the application server which ran Acronis backup software. The complete price was less than $4757 installed.

The Acronis backup software uses snapshot technology to create an exact Windows or Linux server disk image, which includes the operating system, databases and applications. This allows it to do full bare-metal recoveries, even to dissimilar hardware or virtual machines, plus granular file recoveries. After an initial full backup, incremental snapshots take seconds to occur, depending on the amount of data changed since the last backup. Writing data to a backup disk can also have minimal impact on the server since it runs as a background process. “It’s a completely different way of backing up, and a lot faster,” said Mark Stevenson, Account Manager at DataStor.

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