Quantum DXi7500

Backup and disaster recovery software

Gold Award:

Signiant Mobilize for Remote Data Protection

Safeguarding remote data has long been a tough nut to crack for data center admins. Signiant Inc.'s Mobilize for Remote Data Protection (RDP) collects data from remote offices and deposits it at a central site where it can be protected.

RDP is based on Signiant's existing Mobilize technology, which has been OEM'd by Adaptec Inc., EMC Corp. and Pillar Data Systems. A Mobilize Agent runs on a server at each remote location with the entire configuration managed centrally on a Linux or Windows server. One key to RDP's flexibility is its support of a variety of OSes, and its interoperability with nearly any kind of NAS or SAN storage.

RDP collects remote data and, using data reduction and WAN optimization techniques, ships the new and changed information to the central site where it can be backed up, replicated or copied using standard data protection tools. What's backed up to the central site—and how often—is determined by user-defined policies.

RDP takes a two-pronged approach to relieving restore woes. First, it leaves the remote files where they are so they're available to remote users. And when a file does have to be restored from the central store, because it was stored in its native format, it's a simple drag-and-drop process using Windows tools.

Scalability is also a strong point. RDP's basic package can handle five to 30 remote locations, while an Enterprise Edition scales to as many as 2,000 remote sites.

Signiant says that in most cases existing bandwidth will suffice to ship data to the central data center. In-flight data is compressed and encrypted. Further security is provided through authentication and access controls, and VPN support.

Signiant Mobilize for RDP garnered the gold because it provides an effective, simple solution to a problem that plagues firms large and small. Our experts particularly like Mobilize for RDP's painless and nondisruptive implementation. One judge calls it "affordable business continuity with the benefit of content distribution."

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