Infrastructure solution company Triple4 has launched a managed backup offering that complements its existing range of services. Managed Backup Service (MBS) offers companies a cost-effective alternative to the traditional backup method that typically involves backing up to tape and, frequently, storing the tapes offsite.
“Managed backup takes advantage of the greater availability of reasonably priced bandwidth to provide companies with a hosted and, crucially, managed backup service,” says Anton Coetser, service director at Triple4. “We believe that this service meets a real need in the market and complements Triple4’s software-as-a-service and infrastructure offerings, which all aim to deliver business benefits.”
Coetser points out that traditional tape backups are extremely expensive because they require not only tapes and tape drives, but also backup software and backup licences —changes in licensing practices have meant that application aware licences have to be purchased at often inflated prices to provide full backup functionality. Costs can rise quickly for this option, particularly when one factors in possible offsite storage and the “hidden” HR cost of the person to physically load and store the tapes each day.
“Companies know that they need to do backups, but often they simply can’t afford the costs. As a result they skimp the process, placing themselves at risk. This is often a risk that the decision-makers aren’t even aware of,” Coetser says. “As far as the executive suite is concerned, backups are being done. What they don’t realise is that corners are being cut—until it’s too late.”
Triple4’s new service means that the company can install the necessary software and configure software agents on the client’s servers accordingly. Local storage needs to be provided for the backups, which are then replicated via a secure network connection to Triple4’s fully redundant and managed data centre. In the event of a restore being needed, it is delivered back to the client via the same route.
“Online backup is, of course, available already, but what sets our offering apart is the managed component. Our consulting division will first engage with the client to understand its business and define its backup needs, and then configure the software agents accordingly. The backup solution has to align with the business’s needs, and the technology it has in place,” Coetser explains. “Thereafter, the service is managed by us proactively, so we monitor for problems and make the necessary upgrades for a set cost per server per month.“ It always works out cheaper than the traditional tape storage solution and it transfers the responsibility for the management of the backup environment to experts.
“Traditional backups via tapes work and it’s a tried-and-tested solution but, particularly for small to medium companies with small IT departments and tight budgets, a managed backup service is the answer in terms of reliability, ease of use and cost,” Coetser concludes.