Cloud disaster recovery becoming an option for small and midsized organizations

Vizioncore and iland make cloud disaster recovery more affordable for small businesses in the U.K.

Disaster recovery systems have always been too expensive for small and even medium-sized enterprises. But now a partnership of two service suppliers could make even transAtlantic backup fast, reliable and affordable.

Virtualisation tool maker Vizioncore Inc. and iland Internet Solutions Corp., which offers cloud infrastructure services, will provide cloud disaster recovery services in the U.K.

Vizioncore's vReplicator supports disaster recovery by replicating virtual servers, while vConverter converts physical machines to virtual machines.

"Disaster recovery has traditionally been too expensive for many companies … because they'd need to replicate SANs [storage area networks] and all the rest of the infrastructure in another location and most likely not use it," said Dante Orsini, iLand's channel director.

Cheaper storage becomes a reality with cloud disaster recovery
Cloud computing and virtualisation have created the possibility for virtual local area networks (LANS) to be backed up across the globe much more affordably. The client no longer has to buy a complete infrastructure that subsequently remains unused. The fluidity of the cloud computing infrastructure enables resources to be provisioned as and when needed, Orsini said. "The consequence is a much more affordable price structure."

As smaller companies are enticed into the disaster recovery market, vendors are less likely to want to sell direct, he said. Consequently, Dallas-based iland will sell its service through valued-added resellers. Though no appointments have been officially announced yet, systems integrators with a background of selling virtual machines -- such as Softcat -- are likely to be the chosen channel. As a product, "virtualisation is maturing," said Orsini.

It's not just about being affordable, argued Vizioncore's VP of EMEA, Roger Baskerville. "When a system goes down and you want to bring it up, you want there to be as little faffing around with sys admin as possible. But there's no magic bullet for disaster recovery. Until you have faced the situation, you don't know how quickly you will be up and running, or how long you will be tinkering to get the settings right," he said. The beauty of Vizioncore's replication tools, he said, is that systems administrators can replicate a virtual LAN on a remote location any time, and consequently spend time familiarising themselves with the nuances of the process.

There are many firms with both New York and London offices that could benefit from cloud disaster recovery services priced for smaller businesses, said Orsini. He named the law, finance, medical and higher-education sectors as particular targets.

Clive Longbottom, a senior researcher at the analyst firm Quocirca, welcomed the move but also expressed reservations. "Many cloud companies are assuming that a single data centre with a fully virtualised platform and a more-than-one connectivity schema will be enough. But true disaster tolerance needs an N+1 capability at the building level as well, which is where Vizioncore comes in. I'd give it a thumbs-up for what it is trying to do," he said, "and an F- on spelling."

Nick Booth is a contributor to

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