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Midrange online backup offerings help SMBs get on the cloud

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Horne is using the AmeriVault-Asigra product to back up data at an offsite facility. It didn't matter to him, he says, whether AmeriVault owned the remote hosting facility or rented space there. "It just was important to me to know that it was going out of state, going far enough away so if there were a problem locally, it would be unaffected," he says.

But even with pricing just for SMBs, something that many SaaS vendors are competing with, Horne couldn't afford to keep multiple, historical backups of his data.

"So if I delete a file today that was backed up last night, that [newer version] is gone," says Horne. "Basically, I just kept in place our original backup process, on tape, for archival functionality."

Still, Horne says he's more than satisfied now that he knows his data is automatically and incrementally (depending on how it changes) being stored at an offsite location without requiring any of his time or space. He reached his goal of spending less than $8 per gig for that peace of mind.

Backup online vendors have each other to compete against, but it's the IT shops, which just don't like the idea of shipping data offsite to anyone, that have a true aversion to the term "cloud" and are the chief challenge to selling online backup services.

"The people who keep us awake at night," says Bush, "are the people who want to do it all themselves."

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--Ellen O'Brien

This was first published in September 2008

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