Cervalis Speeds Backups with Cost-Effective ExaGrid System
Cervalis is a premier provider of IT infrastructure solutions including business continuity/rapid recovery, managed hosting, enterprise cloud computing, managed security, managed storage, networking and telecommunications, and colocation. The company provides clients with a secure IT enviroment that ensures business resilience. Representing many different industries, clients include organizations of all sizes, from emerging companies to Fortune 500 corporations.
Slow Backup Times and Tape Copy Speed
Businesses rely on Cervalis to host critical information, so it’s imperative that routine backup jobs run as flawlessly as possible. The company’s IT staff had been backing up data to a storage array and then transferring the data to tape but had grown frustrated by long backup times and tape copy speeds.
“It got to the point where we couldn’t get our data written to tape fast enough to free up space for the next jobs coming in,” said Michael King, manager of managed services at Cervalis. “Backups are a priority for us, so we started looking at ways to make our processes more efficient.”
Cost-Effective ExaGrid System Improves Retention
King said that Cervalis decided to purchase a disk-based backup system with data deduplication after first considering building up its existing infrastructure and adding software-based data deduplication.
“We began looking at investing in more disk, faster tape drives, and a software data deduplication product when we learned about ExaGrid. The ExaGrid system gave us the performance and retention we were looking for, all in one package,” he said. “It was also more cost effective,” added King. King said that one of the biggest benefits of installing the ExaGrid system has been increased retention.
“We were able to purchase a system sized with the amount of disk we needed to meet our retention goals. We no longer have to write anything out to tape unless it’s for compliance or for long-term storage. Instead of having to quickly get the data off disk and onto tape, we’re able to keep it on the ExaGrid, which more than doubled the retention capability,” he said. “For our customers, it increases their comfort level.”
Backup Times Reduced, Less Time Spent on Management and Administration
King Said that Cervalis' backups are now completed much faster, and the company's backup engineer has been able to reduce the amount of time he spends on maintenance and administration.
"Backing up our data to the ExaGrid system instead of to tape saves our backup engineer 10 hours a week just on management and administration alone," said King. "He used to swap out several hundred tapes per week, and now he manages fewer than 20."
Responsive, Knowledgeable Customer Support
The ExaGrid system was designed to be easy to set up and maintain, and ExaGrid’s industry-leading customer support team is staffed by trained, inhouse engineers who are dedicated to individual accounts. The system is fully supported and was designed and manufactured for maximum uptime with redundant, hot-swappable components.
“We installed the ExaGrid system ourselves, and it was unbelievably easy,” said King. “It took only four hours from the time we unpacked the unit until we ran our first backup job,” said King.
The ExaGrid system works along with Cervalis’ existing backup application, CommVault Simpana. King noted that the support engineer assigned to Cervalis has a great deal of experience with CommVault products and has been instrumental during the deployment.
“Strong support for CommVault Simpana was an absolute requirement for us, and we certainly haven’t been disappointed. Not only is the ExaGrid product tightly integrated with CommVault, but our ExaGrid support engineer is well versed in it as well,” said King. “We’ve had good experience with ExaGrid’s customer support. Our support engineer knows his way around the system, and he’s provided a lot of value to us. In particular, he’s spent a lot of time working with the CommVault product and tweaking our system to improve performance.”
Scalability to Grow
The ExaGrid system can easily scale to accomodate more data as the company's data grows. ExaGrid's GRID computing software makes the system highly scalable, and when plugged into a switch, different sized configurations can be mixed and matched into a single GRID system with capacities of up to 130TB full backup plus retention. Once virtualized, they appear as a single system to the backup server, and load balancing of all data across servers is automatic.
"The ExaGrid system is scalable so we'll be able to expand it as necessary as our customer base grows over the next few years," said King. "Installing the ExaGrid system has made our backup processes run more efficiently. It's nice to know that we have a solution in place that will server us well into the future."
ExaGrid and CommVault Simpana
CommVault Simpana Backup and Recovery software contains extensive capabilities to simplify the management of backup media resources. Simpana software writes backup data to a broad collection of storage devices, including disk as a media target. This ability to write to magnetic disk as a functional equal of all other media types while exploiting the random access nature of the disk media sets Simpana software apart.
Organizations using CommVault Simpana can look to ExaGrid as an alternative to tape for nightly backups. ExaGrid sits behind existing backup applications, such as Simpana, providing faster and more reliable backups and restores. In a network running Simpana, using ExaGrid in place of a tape backup system is as easy as pointing existing backup jobs at a NAS share on the ExaGrid system. Backup jobs are sent directly from the backup application to the ExaGrid for onsite backup to disk.
For more information about ExaGrid, please visit us at www.exagrid.com or call us at 1-800-868-6985.
ExaGrid is the leader in cost-effective disk-based backup solutions. A highly scalable system that works with existing backup applications, the ExaGrid system is ideal for companies looking to quickly eliminate the hassles of tape backup while reducing their existing backup windows. ExaGrid’s innovative approach minimizes the amount of data to be stored by providing standard data compression for the most recent backups along with zone-level data deduplication technology for all previous backups. Customers can deploy ExaGrid at primary and secondary sites to supplement or eliminate offsite tapes with live data repositories or for disaster recovery.
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