5:1 storage savings? Deduplication shrinks footprint for MSPs and IT admins

Whether you’re a managed service provider (MSP) or a corporate IT administrator, you want to get more backup and disaster recovery data into less storage space.

You’re trying to stick to a small footprint yet operate as if you had a big one. For MSPs, it’s a competitive advantage to offer more services in less space, and the improved profitability goes straight to your bottom line. For storage administrators, the cost savings and efficient use of resources make you look good.

But how can you keep your footprint small when customers and users are pushing you more terabytes of data all the time?

Smaller footprint? Try software-based disaster recovery.

We’ve published a new case study about our customer EDSI. Using Quest® QoreStor, EDSI now avoids the capital expense of huge storage appliances thanks to software-based disaster recovery. Plus, they’ve raised the level of their data protection services and implemented cloud tiering for smarter backup operations.

As an MSP, EDSI offers Quest’s software-based data protection to their managed service customers. But even in-house, enterprise storage teams can use QoreStor to reduce their footprint through lower space requirements and better utilization of resources.

EDSI’s small and medium-sized customers share a tough business reality with much larger companies: the eye-popping growth of data. But those customers found it hard to justify big investments in 10- and 20-terabyte storage appliances. And when EDSI contemplated buying their own appliances to resell storage services to those customers, they themselves had trouble seeing a clear path to profitability.

Also, like many MSPs, EDSI faced a storage space squeeze because of limitations in the backup software they used, which wrote a full, new backup before deleting the old one. So even though the customer paid for, say, a 20TB tenant, the backup operation was costing EDSI as much as 60 TB peak.

More hardware wasn’t the answer, so EDSI turned to software-based data protection and QoreStor.

5:1 space savings with deduplication, plus cloud tiering

EDSI was prepared for QoreStor to help them operate as if they had a big footprint. They got a lot more than they’d bargained for.

“With the deduplication in QoreStor, we were achieving 5:1 space savings after only 30 days of use,” says Jeff Manuszak, the CTO of EDSI. The MSP was enjoying the huge advantage of source-side, variable-block deduplication that, combined with the built-in compression and encryption in QoreStor, can reduce storage requirements by up to 95 percent.

EDSI also steers its managed-service customers toward cloud tiering to move older backups to lower-cost storage tiers in the cloud. They are pleased that QoreStor is designed for cloud tiering because it effectively extends local storage to cloud-based backup through transparent backup/restore, without continued intervention. For retrieval, QoreStor liberates administrators from having to figure out where the data is and then waiting until it is accessible again.

As an MSP with a variety of offerings, EDSI values products that play well with others, especially Veeam Backup & Replication, their disaster recovery service of choice. When they replicate from one QoreStor appliance to an off-site appliance, they use Rapid CIFS, the filter driver in QoreStor that ensures that only unique data is written to Veeam. That tight integration reduces the amount of data they have to send across the network and store at destination.

Next step

For in-house system administrators and MSPs alike, reducing storage costs is right up there with optimizing resources and simplifying management. It doesn’t take long to see how source-side deduplication can greatly lower storage requirements when creating backups and replicating. And with cloud tiering, keeping data easily available on disk longer before moving it to slower, cheaper storage means a higher level of data protection at lower cost.

EDSI has boosted their profitability thanks to the QoreStor Managed Services Provider program, which offers pay-as-you-grow subscription licensing, dedicated account management and MSP-savvy tech support. Read the entire case study to see how else they have lowered storage costs and stuck to a small footprint while operating as if they had a big one.

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Photo credit: Kateryna Mashkevych from istock

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