As expected, SMBs are among the early adopters of Software as a Service (SaaS) backup offerings launched last year by Symantec Corp.
While Symantec Online Backup group product manager Darren Niller said companies are storing "well over 500 GB" of data on the Symantec Protection Network (SPN), there are other businesses backing up 20 GB or less on SPN.
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Stratis swaps out Backup Exec for SPN
Stratis Business Systems in Boca Raton, Fla. used Backup Exec for years before switching to SPN about eight months ago. VP of systems implementation Justin Jugs said Stratis made the switch because, "Frankly, we don't want to spend time on our backups anymore."
Currently, Stratis is spending about $50 per month to protect about 20 GB of data with Symantec Online Backup. "There's no shortage of online backup options out there, and some are definitely cheaper," he said. "But I'm willing to pay a premium for additional peace of mind. I figured Symantec wouldn't cut corners on security and would invest heavily in the infrastructure."
Jugs said he'd like to see Symantec offer greater flexibility around scheduling backups. "Right now you have two options for Symantec Online Backup -- continuous or scheduled," he said. "I'd like to see the ability to configure a combination of both, so there's continuous protection for some applications and scheduled backup for others."
Cameron Consulting: seeking better backups after "traumatizing" data loss
Cameron Consulting is a Massachusetts firm operated by a husband-and-wife team that focuses on autism and special needs education, but -- according to Susan Cameron -- not technology. The firm, which employs about 10 part-time staff, had been using a Maxtor OneTouch external hard drive from Seagate Technology for backing up the company's main PC. Six months ago, Cameron said they went to restore files and found the hard drive had not been functioning properly.
Among the files stored on that machine were the extensive curriculum Cameron Consulting employees use to work with children, records on the cases they manage, and multimedia files used as instructional aids. "We managed to recover most of the curriculum but it was several weeks before we knew we could do that," Cameron said, describing the experience as "traumatizing. We lost a lot of reports, including some on one case that was going to mediation. It was not a fun thing."
Cameron said she turned to online backup after that. "I wanted there to be someone I could call if something went wrong," she said. Cameron said she went with Symantec because she also uses the company's Norton antivirus product.
She had some qualms over entrusting some of the more sensitive data in her care to a third-party service, but has gotten more used to the idea, she said. "I disclose to my clients up front that I use an online backup service, and so far, nobody minds."
Symantec reportedly to offer online storage service
According to a report released by Reuters yesterday, Symantec will launch a new Web-based storage service by the end of next month. The company made two acquisitions to bolster its offerings in the SaaS space last year when it bought Norton 360 backup partner SwapDrive for $124 million in June and Messagelabs Inc. for $695 million in October.