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Commvault serves up a slice of cloud for backup storage

Metallic Cloud Storage Service lets customers use Azure cloud as a backup target for Commvault backup software and HyperScale X, but as a fully managed service through Commvault.

Commvault is offering its customers cloud storage as a backup target through its Metallic SaaS division.

Metallic Cloud Storage Service lets Commvault Backup and Recovery software and HyperScale X appliance customers point their backups to the Microsoft Azure public cloud. Metallic provides the cloud storage, so customers won't need an Azure license. They pay for the service through their existing Commvault license.

Because customers procure Metallic Cloud Storage through Commvault rather than a cloud service provider, customers don't need to monitor their usage or deal with egress charges. Metallic general manager Manoj Nair said Commvault customers have wanted to take backup copies out of their data centers, but they wanted to avoid bringing their own cloud storage. Metallic Cloud Storage Service lets them make the switch to the cloud and also provides the conversion and migration tools for that transition.

Metallic Cloud Storage Service, like the rest of the Metallic SaaS suite, is integrated into Commvault Command Center, the management interface for all Commvault data management products. Customers can discover and deploy Metallic Cloud Storage Service through the Command Center, and it will appear like any other storage target on the interface. Metallic Cloud Storage Service is priced by storage capacity.

Moving backup data to the cloud isn't new, and vendors such as Druva and Backblaze have cloud storage wrapped into their data protection offerings. The significance of Metallic Cloud Storage Service is in Commvault adding the cloud storage component to its suite so that customers don't have to seek it out themselves, said Vinny Choinski, senior lab analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG). Choinski said Commvault is building its platform out to be more broad and complete.

"When looking at what's right for your IT, you have to look at the whole picture. You might not want 10 pieces from 10 different vendors," Choinski said.

Screenshot of Metallic cloud storage
Metallic cloud storage appears like any other storage target within Commvault Command Center.

Christophe Bertrand, senior analyst at ESG, said IT complexity is currently a big issue, so want simpler, streamlined ways of doing things. Going into their backup product's interface and spinning up cloud storage in a few clicks is as simple as it gets, he said. Not having to go through a cloud service provider and getting a predictable bill through Commvault might make Metallic Cloud Storage Service attractive to customers who want to transform into a more hybrid environment. Bertrand pointed out putting backup and archive data in the cloud was something enterprises were already doing even before COVID-19, so the desire for hybrid is an ongoing trend.

"This is enabling digital transformation. It's making a lot of extra steps disappear for the end user," Bertrand said.

Bertrand said customers have to find a balance between using as few vendors as possible to reduce complexity, cost and overlap, while also using the best products for their IT needs. He said with Commvault's new cloud storage option, the platform is broadening further and reducing the likelihood that an established customer would seek out niche products.

Metallic Cloud Storage Service is also hitting upon a trend of customers wanting to offload IT to service providers. Bertrand said there is currently market appetite for as-a-service offerings. This has historically been the case for small- and medium-sized businesses that don't have IT resources to spare, but it is happening even among enterprises. Bertrand said enterprises are willing to pay for simplicity and free up IT resources for business and revenue generating initiatives.

"Customers nowadays don't want to be in the kitchen," Bertrand said.

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