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CommVault considers backup on the edge the next frontier

Among the sales last quarter that helped CommVault surpass its revenue expectations was a large organization that became the first production customer for CommVault’s mobile backup technology.

CommVault launched its Simpana Edge Protection in April, but CommVault CEO Bob Hammer said the release was limited to one large customer that implemented it on 20,000 devices. He predicts this is the beginning of big things to come from the remote backup market.

Hammer said the technology used for remote backup is trickier than backing up only servers. The software needs to be network-aware depending on whether it is connecting over WiFi, the WAN or LAN. It also needs to work with firewalls and other types of security organizations have for edge devices.

“There’s a lot of complicated technology here, and we wanted to work with this one large customer and get all the issues buttoned up,” Hammer said. “We’ve enabled a user to restore information directly without burdening IT. It’s not only about backing up the device, but getting information into an archive for compliance and search.

“It’s at the beginning of its lifecycle, but it will enable us to move that technology into other devices in the edge like tablets and smartphones.”

Hammer said backing up virtual machines, archiving and cloud backup were the major drivers that helped CommVault report $97.5 million in revenue last quarter for a 30% year over year increase.

“We see the cloud going mainstream now for backup,” he said.

He said the customers want to make backup and archiving one process, and that will be one of the focuses of the next version of Simpana.

“That’s a key fundamental technology going forward,” he said. “You have to do it backup and archive as one single process. You move data one time into backup, and create one copy of the data for backup and archive. That’s not a trivial move, but we believe that’s the way it’s going to go. We think it’s the only way to manage data – you have to move it off the front end quickly and store in in a low-cost index, or what we call a strategic archive.”

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