Remote-office data backup products are reviving the failed SSP (storage service provider) model, according to Mike Karp, senior analyst of Boulder, Col.-based Enterprise Management Associates.
In the past, companies handed over all their data storage to a service provider that would handle everything storage-related for them, relieving IT of storage responsibilities -- which failed: Companies didn't want to give up all that control, Karp said.
Now SSPs only do backup and recovery, which IT shops don't want to handle anyway and they still get to keep control of the company data.
A data backup service model also makes it economically practical for customers to backup small sites, which may have well under 100 GB of storage.
Current remote data backup vendors include Asigra, Avamar Technologies, EVault and LiveVault (recently acquired by Iron Mountain Inc.). The Avamar technology is built into Arsenal Digital Solutions' remote backup offering.
Wide-area file services (WAFS) and continuous asynchronous replication technologies also make it possible for you to set up remote branches to use central-office storage as if it were local, eliminating the need for remote backup altogether.
The original version of this story appeared in the March 2006 issue of Storage magazine.