CTERA Adds Bare Metal and Server Backup to Hybrid Cloud

Cloud storage and data protection vendor CTERA Networks has added bare metal backup, server backup and file sharing to its repertoire as the company continues to build out its hybrid cloud storage platform for managed service providers (MSPs) and value added resellers (VARs).

The new capabilities make it possible for CTERA’s Cloud Attached Storage products to protect PCs, roaming laptops and servers with backup at both the disk and file level, stored both locally and in the cloud.

CTERA’s Cloud Attached Storage family combines cloud and local storage, data protection, and collaboration (file sharing) in a centrally managed appliance-based system. The company also announced the first shipments of its new data protection appliance, the CTERA C400 cloud storage gateway.

The enhancements, which are part of the latest release of the CTERA operating system (version 2.5), include incremental, disk-level backup of live workstations and servers, backup and recovery of Microsoft Windows servers, including live backup of Microsoft Exchange, SQL Server and Active Directory, and collaboration features that allow users to share selected files and folders stored in the cloud or on the local appliance.

CTERA came on the scene late last year with its first product, the CloudPlug, which combines a local NAS device with cloud storage services to provide small businesses with low-cost data protection.

The CloudPlug, which is about the size of the average AC power adapter, turns external USB flash drives into NAS devices with automatic backup capabilities and contains software and services for online backup and file sharing, eliminating the need to install backup software on host machines.

The company has since expanded its product line to include larger, appliance-based systems. The latest of which, the C400, boasts up to 8TB of local storage space, with RAID5/6 capability and four hot-swappable drive bays. A single appliance is capable of supporting sites ranging from 50 to 200 users and acts as a gateway for cloud storage services.

All of CTERA’s appliances – the C200, C400 and CloudPlug – are remotely manageable and work in conjunction with the CTERA Portal to enable VARs and MSPs to deploy branded, managed cloud storage services.

CTERA Portal 2.5 and the CTERA OS 2.5 firmware for the CloudPlug, C200 and C400 appliances, are available now to service providers and resellers. The C400 retails for a price of $1,499.

Existing appliance users that are connected to the CTERA service will be upgraded to the new firmware automatically.

CTERA turned its Web portal into a cloud storage services delivery platform earlier this year. The CTERA Portal is available as both a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Edition for resellers who want to manage the customer-facing side of cloud storage services, and as a Datacenter Edition aimed at service providers that have already invested in hosting and storage infrastructures.

The company also beefed up the Linux Ext3 file system that powers its Cloud Attached Storage appliances by adding snapshot capabilities to the mix. CTERA’s Next3 open source file system builds on the Ext3 file system to provide thin volume snapshots and point-in-time recovery, change auditing and retention of previous file versions, features the company says are lacking in Linux Volume Manager (LVM) snapshotting capabilities. Next3 is licensed under GPL and could eventually find its way into the Linux Kernel via the Ext3 or Ext4 file systems.

In addition, CTERA announced that it has completed the initial phase of building out its value-added distribution network and now has global reach with coverage across the U.S. and Europe.

Rani Osnat, CTERA’s vice president of marketing, said recent additions to its partner list have given the company access to more than more than 20,000 VARs and MSPs.

CTERA has added Altimate Group (formerly Distrilogie), Afina, Interwork Technologies, Seneca, WhiteGold in Australia and New Zealand, ITWay in Italy, EPA Systems in Poland, and H.Y. Group in Israel, to its list of partners.

For related articles, visit Internet.com’s new Cloud Computing site.

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Kevin Komiega
Kevin Komiega
Kevin Komiega is an Enterprise Storage Forum contributor.

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