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CloudBerry managed backup helps ITX reduce costs, gain capacity

ITX experienced burgeoning costs with its backup process before switching to CloudBerry Lab and Amazon for its cloud backup. The move also provided extra disk I/O capacity.

Since moving backup to the cloud, software development firm ITX Corp. has reduced costs and made it easier to scale, according to CTO Jonathan Coupal.

ITX is a lifecycle software product development company that creates web and mobile software products. It made the switch to CloudBerry backup two years ago following a year-long evaluation of services. CloudBerry Managed Backup moves data off to the customer's choice of clouds, such as Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, HP Cloud and IBM SoftLayer.

ITX stores its data on Amazon S3 and Glacier. It also uses the CloudBerry Managed Backup reseller portal to provide a backup service to its customers, who can do their own restores.

ITX supports about 150 physical servers and about 150 virtual servers for 1,500 clients. Coupal said as the company grew, its backup costs and complexity also grew. ITX used Linux-based, open-source Bacula software, with agents running on all servers. The company also used Arcserve backup software with a disk backup system and tape libraries.

"We followed the traditional model of incremental dailies and full backups on weekends," Coupal said. "But as we grew, the number of versions and files were getting bigger. We noticed a high cost of managing the system in general. We started to carry a much higher carrying cost than we anticipated. We had to simplify it and get rid of the administrative costs."

Coupal said ITX evaluated four cloud backup options for reliability and the success of data restores.

"I know it seems like a low bar but you have to check if the backup software really does back up the data," Coupal said. "Each step was validated to each use case. We tested full backups and full restores, and how well did it integrate with the cloud storage. Once we tested the backup and recovery, then we looked at how well it integrated with Amazon S3."

CloudBerry backup offers several license options for desktop/server, image-based backup, and Microsoft SQL and Exchange backup.

He said the switch to the cloud also provided ITX with additional CPU power by offloading encryption and compression to Amazon.

"We probably also put off some system upgrades because we gained disk I/O capacity," Coupal said.

The CloudBerry Managed Backup portal was another big selling point for ITX because it facilitated its acting as a provider for customers.

"It allows us to hand off restores to the customers," he said. "Some customers want to manage their own restores. We can delegate accounts for our customers."

Coupal said he likes that CloudBerry Lab is cloud-vendor-agnostic and doesn't force customers to use its cloud storage. CloudBerry Managed Backup offers several license options for desktop/server, image-based backup, and Microsoft SQL and Exchange backup. Annual subscription pricing for 10 licenses ranges from $29.99 for desktop/server backup to $799.90 for SQL and Exchange.

"When you are tied to their pricing model, it carries a risk if they decide to double it and then you are locked in," Coupal said. "You also can have multiple storage targets. We have several customers that want their storage to be offsite to multiple storage targets. The way we think about our company is we are a service provider. We don't own the data we back up. We own very little of the data we host. For us to have the level of trust with customers, it is important that the systems we use are trustworthy at a very basic level."

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