International SOS improves back-ups with ExaGrid Systems

Westborough 30 March 2009International SOS UK has chosen the ExaGrid system to achieve faster back-ups and restores, and remove the hassles associated with tape back-up. International SOS UK is the local arm of the world's major provider of medical assistance, international health care, security services and outsourced customer care. It had been experiencing issues with its nightly tape back-ups. With long back-up and restore times and tape management issues causing problems on a daily basis, the staff decided to look for an alternative solution.


"We had lots of problems with tape, but our main concern was the length of our back-ups. Our nightly back-up windows were way too long and our back-up jobs had begun to run into the workday. And if the back-up was running, we couldn't restore files. With services that cover emergency medical and security evacuations - including more than 16.000 evacuations last year - having streamlined and quicker back-ups enables us to achieve time efficiencies", commented Ben Aung, Infrastructure Manager at International SOS, UK.

After considering systems from both ExaGrid and a competing solution, International SOS UK chose a two-site ExaGrid system to back up data in its London office. "We are very happy with the ExaGrid disk back-up and data deduplication technology that we've chosen. Full back-ups, which currently take nearly 14 hours with tape, will only take six hours with the ExaGrid system. Moreover, in a tough economic climate where prudence is essential, we will also be able to better control costs by reducing the amount of money we spend on tape, transportation and storage fees", continued Ben Aung.

ExaGrid combines last back-up compression along with data deduplication, which only stores changes from back-up to back-up, instead of storing full file copies. This unique approach reduces the disk space required by a range of 10:1 to 50:1 or more, delivering unparalleled cost savings and performance. ExaGrid delivers extremely fast back-up performance because data is written directly to disk, and data deduplication is performed post-process after the data is stored to reduce data.

"The final reason why we decided to go with ExaGrid ahead of its competition was the scalability of its system. It means we are able to have freedom for expansion at a later date without incurring a major cost. Its modular architecture will enable us to easily add capacity in the future to accommodate more data", stated Ben Aung.

ExaGrid's Grid computing software makes the system highly scalable, and when plugged into a switch, different sized configurations can be mixed and matched into a single Grid system with capacities of up to a 60TB full back-up plus retention. When virtualized, they appear as a single system to the back-up server, and load balancing of all data across servers is automatic.

"Organisations struggle daily with tape back-up technology that simply can't keep pace with growing data protection needs", stated Bill Andrews, President and CEO of ExaGrid Systems, Inc. "ExaGrid's Disk-based Backup with Deduplication system was designed to work with existing back-up applications to quickly, easily and cost-effectively reduce long back-up windows and eliminate the hassles of tape."

Operating in over 70 countries, International SOS helps organisations manage the health and safety risks facing their travelers and global workforce. Its services range from consultancy and planning services to 24-hour medical and security advice and assistance. It also provides emergency medical and security evacuations when there is a critical illness, accident or civil unrest. Last year, the company handled over 810.000 assistance cases, including more than 16.000 evacuations.

Headquartered in Westborough, Massachusetts, ExaGrid is specialized in cost-effective and scalable disk-based back-up solutions with byte-level data deduplication. A highly scalable system that works with existing back-up applications, the ExaGrid system is ideal for companies looking to quickly eliminate the hassles of tape back-up while reducing their existing back-up windows. ExaGrid's patented approach minimizes the amount of data to be stored by providing standard data compression for the most recent back-ups along with byte-level data deduplication technology for all previous back-ups. Customers can deploy the ExaGrid system at primary sites and secondary sites to supplement or eliminate off-site tapes with live data repositories or for disaster recovery. More company news is available in the VMW September 2006 article St. Mary's Regional Medical Center streamlines data back-up with ExaGrid.

Source: ExaGrid

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