STORServer was one of the first companies to come out with a backup appliance for the mid-market over 10 years ago. Their product used IBM’s Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) as the backup software loaded onto server hardware with a tape library option, all from STORServer. Since then, the company has built a significant installed base that relies on this turnkey backup solution and has also fared well in comparisons with other backup appliances.
STORServer’s original Enterprise Backup Appliance (EBA) was designed to write to disk, sidestepping the cumbersome VTL (Virtual Tape Library) architecture that other backup applications needed. This, along with TSM’s ‘incremental forever’ capability, has given the company a compelling solution, one they’ve leveraged for the past dozen years. STORServer has also built an installation and support capability, plus a large sales channel, to provide expertise required to make theirs a truly turnkey product.
Now STORServer has added CommVault’s Simpana 10 software. This new option is available on all of STORServer’s existing appliance product line, which covers small company environments with a few TBs of data up to enterprises with a petabyte to backup.
CommVault was one of the first backup applications to offer source-side deduplication to reduce backup data sets before they were sent to the backup server. It also offered an integrated solution that combined backup, disaster recovery and archive in the same architecture. Simpana 10 brings STORServer a much broader feature set, including a workflow scheduler, content store, eDiscovery support and better data protection for ‘edge’ devices (laptops, desktops, mobile devices, etc).
STORServer has their own cloud offering for TSM customers and will add CommVault support eventually if needed. But they’re currently relying on their partner network to provide backup cloud support for these new CommVault appliances. For their partners that want to become backup cloud providers STORServer has a ‘jumpstart’ program in place that enables them to become an MSP is 40 days.
Storage Swiss Take
Backup has changed dramatically since STORServer opened its doors in 2000. Since then disk backup, deduplication and snapshot-based backups have largely replaced direct backups to tape. This has improved backup and recovery times and made the process more efficient. But companies, especially those in the mid-market, are still looking for ways to reduce the cost of data protection and improve its effectiveness. Clearly, backup appliances like STORServer are the way to do it. This fact is supported by the decisions of software companies (such as Symantec and Unitrends) to come out with their own backup appliances.
STORServer has built a good business in this market and adding CommVault to their appliance offerings will make that better. Simpana 10 brings a rich feature set and has proven to be a more progressive supplier in the backup market than TSM. They’re also more strongly embraced by the reseller channel.
This move makes sense for STORServer, which has the infrastructure for building backup appliances and more than a decade worth of experience doing so. This also makes sense for CommVault, which doesn’t currently have an appliance offering since ending their Dell relationship recently.
STORServer is not a client of Storage Switzerland