The Client. St. Michaels University School (SMUS) is a private co-educational, independent day and boarding school of 930 students from kindergarten through grade 12. It’s located in Victoria, British Columbia.
The Problem. SMUS was facing major challenges with its data backup and recovery system. With the previous system, Symantec Backup Exec 2010 version 13, the school was doing incremental backups daily and fully backups over the weekends, but IT staff wanted the ability to back up all data every day.
SMUS also needed an easier way to perform file level restores and review data retention policies. Doing multiple copies with Backup Exec 2010 version 13 proved cumbersome and often did not work during testing. There also was the issue of time. Backup Exec 2010 version 13 backups started at 10 p.m. every evening and usually finished by 7 a.m. the next day. But if there was a hiccup, backups would go into the next work day and slow down the entire system.
The Solution. Based on recommendations from internal IT experts with experience at other schools, SMUS chose the STORServer Backup Appliance. STORServer is built primarily on the IBM Tivoli Storage Manager platform and features integrated backup, archive and disaster recovery capabilities.
The Result. SMUS now gets much faster backups for its 17.5 terabytes of raw data – a quarter of what the Symantec setup required. Data restoration is instant, rather than taking 30-40 minutes per file.
“We now spend at most 10 minutes a day maintaining the system,” said Rob Przybylski, manager of computer services for SMUS. “Time wise, it is a huge savings. And, my level of comfort is priceless.”
That comfort level was solidified in October 2013, when SMUS experienced a major storage crash after installing STORServer. The STORServer appliance was able to restore more than 7.1 million files, 900 student email accounts and some bare metal servers in a few days.
Meantime, SMUS counts on STORServer to help it store and archive more data than ever, and set the appropriate retention policies.
“STORServer is quite a hands-off system,” Przybylski said. “You set it up at the beginning with the retention policies, and then it really does run itself.”