How do MSPs Stay Relevant in the Cloud Era? – Datto Briefing Note

The SaaS backup market went from almost non-existent to very crowded in a few short years. Managed Service Providers (MSPs) quickly tried to reposition themselves from selling on-premises solutions to the cloud-based solutions their customers were demanding. Several companies emerged to help these MSPs make the change. Now though, just backing up to the cloud is not enough. These organizations are looking for complete data protection and disaster recovery offerings as well as other services. Essentially MSPs want a one stop-shop to supply their customer’s needs.

Addressing the Customer Continuity Demand

When it comes to continuity, the customers’ demand is simple to identify but hard to fulfill. They want all their data everywhere, always protected and always available no matter how severe the disaster. To meet these requirements, MSPs need to provide fully managed file sync and share, data protection of virtual physical servers, workstations, laptops and SaaS applications. They also need to provide rapid recovery and even full-service disaster recovery.

Datto – Full Service Continuity Provider

Datto is a Total Data Protection provider of fully integrated, MSP centric products that enable MSPs to quickly implement complete data protection solutions for its customers. The MSP is responsible for implementing Datto’s on-premises appliance as well as monitoring various data protection tasks. With Datto’s partner portal, the MSP can even perform DR tests and assist with recoveries.

“The Datto solution provides complete protection for Windows, Linux, and Mac systems. It can also protect both physical and virtual versions of these operating systems, fully supporting Hyper-V and VMware environments with agentless support for VMware vSphere 6.5 via APIs.“

The Datto appliances range from small to large physical systems as well as virtual ones. Recently Datto updated its offering to include an updated version of its SIRIS Imaged software appliance, enabling MSPs and customers to “bring their own” server.

Datto also added a new process that provides immediate failover to local virtual machines further reducing RPO/RTOs. To complete the Fast Failback cycle, Datto creates a virtual “Rescue Agent” on the SIRIS device from any recovery point on the source machine. The Rescue Agent will retain all of the Source Agent’s configurations until the source agent or its replacement is restored. Then, a new bare metal recovery (BMR) is run and any subsequent backups of the live Rescue Agent are mirrored to the BMR destination. This ensures that whenever a customer wants to bring the original machine back into service, it’s ready and waiting and just a reboot away from production, not hours or days.

Datto also goes beyond continuity. First, it provides complete protection of SaaS applications like Google G-Suite, Microsoft Office 365 and Salesforce.com. Second, it provides MSPs with solutions for networking.

Datto Networking includes WiFi access points, switches and a router with integrated 4G LTE. MSPs manage everything from purchasing and configuration to ongoing maintenance in the cloud. It is purpose built for the managed services model. Born in the cloud and featuring just-plug-it-in installation, auto-optimization and network continuity, it is a networking product line purpose-built for the MSP.

StorageSwiss Take

MSPs still have a significant role to play in the IT ecosystem, especially in markets where they ARE their customer’s IT. MSPs need a stable of solutions designed for them, but that enables them to still add value without having to build their own cloud. Datto seems to have struck that balance well.

Twelve years ago George Crump founded Storage Switzerland with one simple goal; to educate IT professionals about all aspects of data center storage. He is the primary contributor to Storage Switzerland and is a heavily sought after public speaker. With over 25 years of experience designing storage solutions for data centers across the US, he has seen the birth of such technologies as RAID, NAS and SAN, Virtualization, Cloud and Enterprise Flash. Prior to founding Storage Switzerland he was CTO at one of the nation's largest storage integrators where he was in charge of technology testing, integration and product selection.

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Posted in Briefing Note

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