Adept4 serves around 30 customers in sectors including the utilities, telecoms and manufacturing from 100 servers at four datacentres at Bracknell, Leeds, Northampton and Warrington. Adept4 provides software and IT services remotely that include Microsoft email, Office and Sharepoint, Cisco security plus remote storage on an IBM SAN. Presently the service provider backs up about 150 customer laptops, a number it expects will increase to around 1,000 in the next 12 months.
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"When [Brightstor]worked, it worked well," Birkett said. "But when it didn't, it was hit-and-miss. It used to uninstall itself and every time we tried to reinstall we found it had left traces behind and that caused huge problems. It was time-consuming and support was taking forever."
Adept4 chose Atempo's Live Backup to replace Brightstor. The Atempo product is remotely installable and offers continuous data protection via incremental backups that occur automatically whenever a user connects via VPN to the datacentre. LiveBackup works only with Microsoft platforms and uses SQL Server 2005 to track client-system data changes.
The software's bare metal restore feature also allowed Adept4 to offer a disaster recovery service to its customers, said Birkett. "As a service provider, we can offer basic backup but also bare metal restore. It's good for us to be able to provide differing levels of service to suit different customers and to be able to get that from one product."
Adept4 continues to use Symantec Backup Exec for its server. But Backup Exec didn't fit the bill for Adept4's laptop environment, and the pricing model didn't work for Birkett. Adept4 also evaluated Backup Exec, other CA products and IBM Tivoli Storage Manager, but the company "needed better service than they could offer. In terms of pricing, evaluation, pre-sales and being able to talk to their techies, Atempo has been ideal."
Atempo's pricing model with Adept4 will see the service provider buying licences in blocks of 10 with pricing based on projected licence volume of 1,000 in 12 months time. CA's pricing structure worked in blocks of 100.
Laptop backup tools are increasingly in demand, but users can sometimes find that laptop backup features bundled with server backup software are not as good at the job as specialised products. Recently a UK consulting firm discovered that its CommVault Simpana backup suite was not suited for laptop data protection. Like Adept4, that consultancy found that a smaller, more specialised vendor were more suited to its specific requirements.