LiveVault, Iron Mountain Team Up For Fail-Safe Backup Service

Many businesses typically transport backup tapes to an off-site location for safekeeping. One fail-safe solution, however, is to back up data over the Internet.

LiveVault has been working with Iron Mountain to provide a complete service for IP-based online server backup, off-site electronic vaulting and data recovery. LiveVault provides continuous backup, no-wait recovery and remote-management capabilities. In addition, there are no tapes to deal with. Off-site data is stored in secure Iron Mountain facilities but can be restored from anywhere in the world.

Iron Mountain has been providing data vaulting services to more than 125,000 customers worldwide for more than 30 years. LiveVault's operations center is manned around the clock to provide support and assistance. LiveVault supports Windows NT/2000/XP, Sun Solaris and Red Hat Linux.

Solution providers can make easy money using the LiveVault service, as margins increase based on the volume of client data under protection. The turnkey solution is available with no investment in infrastructure whatsoever. LiveVault provides extensive marketing and sales support, including sales and presales technical training.

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The job of backing up data requires manual intervention, creating a situation that's ripe for error. But once set up, LiveVault provides automatic backups. There are no tapes to handle or store, no rebuilding files from multiple tapes and no tape failures to deal with. Because it could be impractical to restore an entire server over a broadband Internet connection, discs of recovery data can also be delivered overnight to a user for a small fee.

The Iron Mountain data centers are designed to minimize the potential for data loss. The data centers cannot be located anywhere that has been flooded within the past 500 years or near an earthquake fault. They must be located out of any airport flight path, away from high crime areas or banks or shops that store or sell valuables, and within three miles of police and fire stations. Data centers must be located in commercially zoned areas rather than industrial, at least two miles from fuel storage tanks, chemical plants and railroad lines. Centers are housed in single-story, steel-reinforced, earthquake-resistant concrete vaults with entrances protected by Class-5 steel vault doors. There are no windows.


Once the LiveVault service is enabled, LiveVault's Virtual Backup and Recovery Network technology creates a secure tunnel from the server to the Iron Mountain data center.

To minimize the possibility of fire, Iron Mountain data centers are never used for paper storage. Centers are equipped with a Halon 1301 gaseous fire suppression system rather than water sprinklers. They are also equipped with a 40- kVA UPS as well as a 230-kilowatt diesel backup generator. Two Liebert 10-ton air-conditioning units provide climate-controlled conditions, and server racks are seismically protected. Data centers are also protected by state-of-the-art security systems.

Setting up LiveVault is easy. Users enroll via the Web, registering with an e-mail address and password. LiveVault then e-mails out a new user name and password so the solution provider can download the LiveVault software agent,the only piece of software that must be installed on a server. Once enabled, LiveVault's Virtual Backup and Recovery Network technology creates a secure tunnel from the server to the Iron Mountain data center. Customers need an always-on broadband Internet connection such as a T1 line, cable modem or DSL.

An initial full backup of all files on the protected server is made the first time it is connected to the LiveVault service. Thereafter, data is backed up only at the byte level as it is created or changed, which doesn't generate enough traffic to adversely affect network performance.

Users can access the Web management portal at MyLiveVault is where users enroll, set backup policies and initiate restores. The portal can also be used to check backup status using a Web browser. Files can be restored at any time, either by clicking on current versions from disk cache or by browsing through the file history contained in LiveVault's online tape archives. Files can be restored immediately by the user or copied to CD-ROM or NAS by the LiveVault staff and delivered to users overnight in an encrypted, password-protected format.

LiveVault employees constantly monitor all operations and will promptly contact a user if necessary. Test Center engineers actually got to see the process in action. A test system that was being used to demonstrate the LiveVault service,one that didn't necessarily have to be backed up,was turned off at the end of the day before a backup procedure was completed. Engineers immediately received an e-mail noting the lost connection, followed by a phone call from a LiveVault technician who just wanted to make sure everything was OK.

LiveVault Data Backup Solution
PRICE: $295 per month for up to 10 Gbytes of protected server data; $695 per month for up to 25 Gbytes of protected server data; $1,250 per month for up to 50 Gbytes of protected server data
DISTRIBUTORS/INTEGRATORS: Access Data, Hewlett-Packard, I.B.I.S., Iron Mountain, U.S. Data Trust
COMPANY: LiveVault
Marlborough, Mass.
(800) 638-5518