Data Centers

Mozy online backup service for the SMB

Data protection is frequently neglected for small and medium businesses. Online services now are available to allow a managed backup to work for you. IT pro Rick Vanover hashes out some of the points related to these services.

By now, we have all seen the commercial for Mozy on television. I initially rolled my eyes at the concept, but then I came around to see a use case. I had initially grouped Mozy with some of the issues related to some of the other new Web services available. These new Web services pose many issues to larger organizations, which I highlighted for remote access software and SkyDrive storage. I am always looking to advocate for the small and medium business (SMB) and telecommuters in my posts on this blog, as I feel they can be neglected at times. With that, Mozy seemed to fit.

If you are not familiar with Mozy, it is an online backup service. Here are the basics:

  • Computers (Windows and Mac) are backed up over a broadband connection.
  • It is incredibly easy to use.
  • A free version is available for home users (limited to 2GB).
  • Active Directory, SQL, and Exchange support is available.
  • Open file and PST files are supported.
Affordable solution

For the SMB, the professional service is very affordable. Pricing for a server starts at $6.95 plus $.50/GB per month for the storage backed up. For the SMB with one or two servers, this nominal charge may be attractive for the convenience. Desktop backups are also available starting at $3.95 plus $.50/GB per month for the storage backed up.

What it can't do

Mozy won't perform a full bare metal restore like other data protection products offer. Mozy also has certain logic that applies to some of the products, namely around deletions. Michael Horowitz points out in this CNET news post that when you delete a file from your local system, the next backup deletes the file from the next current archive. It is available for a period of time in the prior backup sets, however. That functionality is close to the standard of enterprise backup software but is something that a good trial run including restore tasks would shake out for your use.

Speaking of restores, this service needs your Internet connection to be top-notch. So, if you do jump into an online backup service like this, take the money you were spending on tapes, backup software licenses, and backup servers to upgrade your Internet connection to the best you can afford. There is an option for restores to be sent via FedEx, however.

What is your take on these products? I'm curious to see the adoption rate of these services. Share your comments below.

About

Rick Vanover is a software strategy specialist for Veeam Software, based in Columbus, Ohio. Rick has years of IT experience and focuses on virtualization, Windows-based server administration, and system hardware.

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