UPDATED January, 2017 to reflect the latest providers on the market: Online backup solutions aren’t just for laptops anymore. The best modern enterprise cloud backup services are able to deliver complete backup & DR functionality for multi-platform server environments with data sizes up to 100TB and beyond.
Below, I’ve made a list of what I consider to be the 20 most important backup services for business-class server backup.
- Zetta Affordable enterprise-grade cloud backup, which is optimized to quickly back up large datasets (up to 500TB). The solution includes the cloud backup service, a disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) option, and plug-ins for SQL, Exchange, VMware, Hyper-V and NetApp servers.
- MozyPro The business-class counterpart to one of the world’s most popular low-cost backup solutions. Backing from EMC is a major plus or negative depending who you are.
- CrashPlan Offering both free and enterprise backup solutions with support for VMware, Sun, Linux, Windows and Mac. Large enterprises have had good results for endpoint backup, less so for servers.
- eVault Online backup backed by a strong name, and trusted by a broad client base. Requires an appliance for data sizes >1TB.
- IDrive Pricing and support is well reviewed, but “1TB per week” is too slow for even small enterprises.
- Carbonite Very popular with consumers for home backup, Carbonite’s server backup pricing is low, but performance is slow at “up to 100GB.”
- DataBarracks Serious business backup service with support for many different operating systems.
- SecurStore An industry-certified leader in cloud backup and corporate disaster recovery.
- LiveVault Iron Mountain’s entry into the business online backup market.
- BackupMyInfo Online backup from a talented and diverse group of entrepreneurs.
- DSCorp.net Helping ensure that your company is thoroughly prepared for even the most menacing of data disasters.
- GlobalDataVault Advanced, full-featured backup service provider with a special focus on compliance.
- Backup-Technology A rapidly-growing innovator which has been providing online backup since 2005.
- Intronis Fast, secure online backup with an established partner network.
- StorageGuardian Award-winning backup provider, recommended by VARs for over 10 years.
- Storagepipe The Canadian leader in online backup to the cloud, with a broad presence in the blogosphere.
- OpenDrive Business backup with additional services built in, such as file storage, synching and sharing.
- RemoteDataBackups A premium data protection provider that offers a free product trial. They have a long list of clients and testimonials available.
- DriveHQ Offering both cloud storage and IT services in the cloud, for a higher level of service.
- OnCoreIT Pure backup for service providers, businesses and individuals.
Here’s a quick checklist of what to look for:
- Performance –Before buying a new solution, test backup performance in your environment. Ask if your vendor offers effective backup speed testing, which it should. Tests should include upload/download speeds and latency tests.
- Cost – Evaluating cloud backup costs work best when your compare total costs, not only the “teaser” price. Basic pricing schemes charge the average amount of GB stored in a given month, although this is not universal. Costs may go up for recovering data.
- Security – Check that data is encrypted in flight and at rest in the data center, and look for audited data handling standards like SSAE-16. Before you backup data, be sure that you have protected it with anti-malware.
- Local backup capability – This is an important component of any cloud backup strategy. Your vendor should enable additional local backup for high-value active data. This enables you to quickly restore priority data over the LAN.
- VM and Physical server backup capability – A backup product should be able to backup physical and virtual servers, especially market leaders VMware and Hyper-V.
- Disaster Recovery – DR is the reason that you do offsite backup in the first place. Best practice is to evaluate recovery performance during a trial period. Look for a DRaaS vendor who provides not only rapid recovery, but also spins up servers in the cloud as needed.
- Archiving – Not the most critical component but large amounts of company data are never accessed, and storing it offsite frees up primary storage.