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Iron Mountain Updates CloudRecovery

Iron Mountain Inc. has updated its CloudRecovery product and service, which now supports Microsoft's System Center Data Protection Manager (DPM) 2010. The new version of CloudRecovery will also increase scalability up to multiple terabytes, be able to restore the entire DPM SQL Server database, giving users the option of abandoning tape backup. An optional appliance called Data Shuttle will allow for rapid restoration of large amounts of data. Data is still backed up to Iron Mountain's data centers, with data retention ranging from 30 days to seven years. The update will be available some time after DPM 2010 ships in June.

"We love it," says Alan Bourassa, chief information officer for EmpireCLS Worldwide Chauffeured Services. The organization has been using DPM 2007 for two years, the CloudRecovery service for one year, and they went into production mode with DPM 2010 and the updated version of CloudRecovery about three months ago. "It's good from the standpoint of using an administrative console with DPM, that we can manage our in-house data stores from that console and manage our Iron Mountain in the cloud with such tight integration."

Iron Mountain is also changing its pricing model to server-based with "capacity bands" that will make costs more predictable for users, says Jackie Su, senior product marketing manager. In addition, users can now also back up all of the SQL Server database to the cloud. Previous versions could back up only a portion, meaning a tape back-up system was still necessary. EmpireCLS expects to save 35 percent compared to its previous backup-recovery model. The savings are due in part to the new pricing model, and also because the company will no longer require a tapes and cartridges, which took employees up to two hours a day to manage.

Data Shuttle is an optional appliance that gives customers access to between two and 24TB of data, which Iron Mountain staff will download from its data center, restore to the appliance and then express ship to the customer site. Compared to other services that offer an appliance on-site, Data Shuttle offers improved disaster recovery capability. "In case of a disaster, both the DPM server and an on-site appliance will be toast," says Su. "With the service, you could potentially have all the servers back up before the facility or Internet was back up."

Bourassa says he doesn't expect to need Data Shuttle because he can already quickly pull data back if he needs it, but he says it would be useful if he needed to get huge volumes of data back within 12 hours. Su couldn't commit to the update's general availability of DPM 2010, but says the two products are "pretty much aligned." CloudRecovery can also be used in non-Microsoft environments such as Linux and Unix.