Asigra Cloud Backup 11 tackles mobile backup and consumers

Asigra Cloud Backup 11 tackles mobile backup for smartphones and tablets as well as a consumer backup client and management improvements.

Asigra Inc. this week will roll out an updated version of its Cloud Backup software for service providers, adding support for mobile backup of smartphones and tablets as well as cloud backup services for consumers.

Asigra Cloud Backup 11 also has a new Web portal for managing backups and an automated licensing scheme, as well as support for 10 Gbps LANs for multi-threading and better NAS integration via NetApp Inc. APIs.

Asigra Cloud Backup 11 offers local and cloud backup support for Apple Inc.’s iOS operating system products, including those for the iPhone and iPad, as well as Google Inc.’s Android OS used in smartphones and tablet computers. The mobile backup application can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store, Google’s Android Market and Amazon Inc.’s Android Appstore.

While businesses may not require handheld-device backup now, they may in six months and almost certainly will within a year, said Ashar Baig, Asigra’s senior director of product marketing. Baig said some organizations are already replacing laptops with tablets.

“Enterprise users are changing,” Baig explained. “Sometimes these [mobile devices] are the only communication and data generation device they have.”

While backup vendors are beginning to take on backup for mobile devices, backup experts say they still have a long way to go to meet the needs of most organizations.

“I think that most vendors have really underestimated the opportunity here,” said George Crump, founder and president of analyst firm Storage Switzerland.

Asigra’s new DS-Consumer client lets service providers offer local and cloud backup services for consumers. The DS-Consumer client lets managed service providers extend backup services to SOHO and consumer desktops and laptops. Baig said this features lets consumers either back up locally or to the cloud with one click. DS-Consumer users can also take advantage of Asigra’s continuous data protection (CDP) capability to roll back to any point in time.

“At the end of the day, they all send data to the same DS system and the data gets stored to the same storage repository,” Baig said.

Asigra’s Web-based management portable called DS-NOC (Network Operations Center) lets service providers manage Asigra’s main components--the DS-System installed at the provider’s data center and DS-Clients installed on computers and mobile devices. The DS-NOC monitors DS-Clients and DS-Systems as well as Asigra’s BLM (Backup Lifecycle Management) Archiver module. Asigra Backup 11 does not yet support monitoring of the new DS-Smartphone and DS-Tablet clients through DS-NOC.

Asigra is also automating its licensing with Cloud License Server, which lets MSPs remotely authenticate and update licenses because licenses are not tied to specific hardware. One License Server can manage licenses for DS-System, Mobile DS-System, Consumer DS-System, DS local clients and BLM Archiver, as well as replication licenses.

Marc Staimer, president of Dragon Slayer Consulting, said the License Server and NOC can enhance service providers’ ability to deliver cloud backup.

“There is nothing like the License Server available in the market for any kind of cloud software,” Staimer said. “This is an incredibly useful tool in moving licenses around to where they need to be to meet needs. The NOC provides multiple layers of security and flexibility for service providers and their customers.”

Asigra 11 will be available Tuesday. Baig said version 11 will ship as the standard Asigra Cloud Backup solution with pricing starting at $2,000. The new version is free for current Asigra customers with maintenance contracts.

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