Why set up a disaster recovery site when Amazon Web Services (AWS) already operates world-class cloud data centers?
That's the thinking behind Quantum's latest offering, Q-Cloud Protect. Available now in the Amazon Marketplace, the product is a virtual appliance that uses Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), and works in tandem with the company's Quantum DXi backup appliances (virtual and physical), to provide customers with off-site disaster recovery (DR) services.
By eliminating the capital expense of DR storage and placing their backup data on the cloud, businesses can greatly reduce the cost of disaster recovery, asserts Eric Bassier, senior director of Product Management and Marketing for Quantum. Even businesses that ship tapes to an off-site facility can benefit from cloud economics.
"What's being stored on the cloud is just the deduplicated blocks of data," Bassier told InfoStor. Using the company's variable-length deduplication technology, Q-Cloud Protect can cut cloud storage and transmission costs by up to 90 percent, according to company estimates. Quantum's variable-length approach results in 3x to 5x "better data reduction than a fixed-block dedupe algorithm," he said.
In essence, Q-Cloud Protect can help businesses, particularly smaller enterprises with tighter IT budgets, avoid the upfront storage costs of properly protecting their operations against floods, earthquakes and any number of natural and man-made disasters, said Bassier. "It's all operational expense, no capital expense." Further keeping costs in check is a metered pricing, a licensing model that charges customers on an hourly basis.
For added flexibility, Q-Cloud Protect can be "downloaded and operated in any one of any Amazon's data centers," said Bassier. For example, a customer in the western U.S. can designate Amazon's North Virginia cloud data center, or any other part of the AWS global infrastructure, as a de facto DR site. Quantum recommends storing DR data 100 miles from the primary data center, however.
Enterprises that have already expanded their IT operations into Amazon's cloud ecosystem will have to trouble adapting to the new paradigm. "For customers that are already using AWS, it's another virtual machine that they'll be able to manage within their Amazon environment," said Bassier.
Q-Cloud Protect also serves as a stepping stone for companies that are considering hybrid-cloud approaches for their IT requirements. "This is a great application, a great use case, for the cloud," said Bassier.
Q-Cloud Protect joins Q-Cloud Archive and Q-Cloud Vault as part of Quantum's cloud-enabled data protection product slate. It is available now in the public Amazon Marketplace and will be available for GovCloud and C2S customers sometime in the first quarter of 2016. Support for Microsoft Azure and Google's cloud is also in the works, Bassier revealed.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Infostor. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.
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