i365 Unveils ‘Warm Site’ DR Service for IBM i
August 11, 2010 Alex Woodie
i365 now supports IBM‘s IBM i operating system with its EVault Remote Disaster Recovery (RDR) service, the company announced today. EVault RDR gives customers access to i365 data center resources to run critical i, AIX, Linux, and Windows applications in the event of a disaster. The new service, which starts at $800 per Power Systems server per month, will be enticing to the 1,000 System i customers that already rely on EVault for online backups.
i365 launched its EVault RDR service two years ago, and has attracted about 50 customers so far, according to i365 product manager Karen Jaworski. With today’s announcement, which expands RDR’s platform support beyond Windows to include IBM i, AIX, Linux, and VMware environments, that number is expected to increase dramatically, especially considering i365 is already providing online backups to 35,000 customers.
It’s a good bet that more than a few will sign on with RDR, Jaworski says. “There’s a tremendous amount of savings that can be had from this type of approach, where you have your DR strategy and DR plan fully integrated with a backup solution,” she tells IT Jungle. “That means there’s no more saving to tape, then driving the tape offsite . . . It’s now fully automated. You no longer have to manage the backup.”
i365 characterizes RDR as a “warm site” DR offering, in that it provides all the hardware and networking resources that a company would need to get critical ERP applications back up and running quickly after a disaster. (Full “hot site” providers, such as Sungard and IBM BCRS, provides everything needed for recovery, right down to the chairs and number 2 pencils.)
The RDR offering is being hosted in the Seagate subsidiary’s SAS 70 Type II certified data centers in Salt Lake City, Utah, and Toronto, Canada. Investments were made to bring in additional server and networking resources to handle the expected increase in workload.
Virtualization is the name of the game here. IBM’s PowerVM hypervisor is used to manage the standby Power Systems resources, and an X64-based hypervisor for everything else. i365 also built a grid platform that extends to its backend storage. “It’s really a state of the art platform we built up in our Tier 3 and 4 data centers across North America,” Jaworski says.
Customers have a choice of two RDR offerings, with different recovery time objectives (RTOs) written into the service level agreements (SLAs). The Standard package comes with an RTO of 48 hours and one DR test under the life of the contract, while the Mission Critical package carries a 24-hour LTO and a DR test every year. Both packages include the services of i365 experts, who will work with the customer to create the DR plan and also assist the customer during a disaster.
“It’s a complete managed service, because obviously at the time of a disaster, you don’t want to leave anything up to chance,” Jaworski says. “You want the DR experts walking you through the whole process–and actually doing it for you.”
It was really only a matter of time before i365 got into the DR business. After all, many of i365’s business partners, including Sungard and United Computer Group‘s VAULT400, have largely based their DR businesses on the EVault online backup technology. And last fall, i365 launched a cloud-based storage platform, which put more infrastructural plumbing in place.
When one considers i365’s claim that it owns 40 percent of the online backup market, which is growing at about 25 percent annually, and that hosted DR is growing at a faster clip, it’s not surprising at all that i365 would expand in this direction.
i365 is supporting the last two releases of IBM i (versions 6.1 and 7.1). Pricing for the Standard package starts at $800 per server per month for IBM i and AIX environments, and about $400 per month for Windows and Linux environments. This gives users the capability to store up to 300 GB; extra data requires an extra charge. The Mission Critical package starts at $1,200 per month for IBM i and AIX, and is less for Windows and Linux. VMware ESXServer environments cost a bit more. For more information, see www.i365.com.
This article was corrected. i365 product manager Karen Jaworski’s name was misspelled. IT Jungle regrets the error.