Datto Adds Linux, Office 365 Data Protection, Intros New Data Protection Router

Data protection appliance and software vendor Datto this week used its annual partner conference to introduce new ways to protect data in Linux and Office 365 environments and a new router aimed at making it easy for MSPs to bring cloud control to backups.

The focus of the new solutions is on helping customers who are backing up more data in more parts of their businesses, said Robert Gibbons, chief technology officer of Norwalk, Conn.-based Datto.

"Data is stored locally, moving to SaaS, and moving between SaaS apps," Gibbons told CRN. "Customers have mobile data that is out-of-band, with users using Dropbox from mobile devices and PCs."

Sponsored post

[Related: Datto Acquires Backupify, Adds SaaS-Focused Data Protection]

At its partner conference this week in New Orleans, Datto introduced several updates to its technology to about 500 solution provider companies.

Gibbons said the company's new Linux agent is arguably the most important part of the news.

Datto's data protection software uses the ShadowProtect technology from Draper, Utah-based StorageCraft Technology, which Gibbons said is a great solution for Windows-based data protection.

"But until a month ago, StorageCraft did not have a Linux agent," he said. "So we built our own. It works with any Linux distribution, as well as with the Linux kernel, to provide image backups for Linux."

This is a big move for partners, Gibbons said. "As they expand the number of deals they compete in, we need to work with Linux like we do with Windows," he said.

Datto also expanded its Backupify SaaS-based data protection technology with the ability to protect Office 365 files.

When Datto in December acquired Backupify, the latter was focused on protecting data and applications from such SaaS providers as Google Apps and Salesforce. The new Datto Backupify for Office 365 now allows automated protection of Office 365 data, helping partners, especially MSPs, work more closely with Microsoft-focused customers, Gibbons said.

This is huge news for partners with customers who have moved to or who are looking to work with Microsoft Office 365, said Mark Calzone, president of Ash Creek Enterprises, a Stratford, Conn.-based solution provider and partner to both Datto and Microsoft.

Ash Creek Enterprises has been relying on Microsoft's own data protection tools to back up customers in Microsoft Office 365 environments, all the while hoping that the data can be restored when needed, Calzone told CRN.

His company has been a beta tester of the new Office 365 enhancements, and found some Office 365 customers already migrating to Backupify during the testing process, Calzone said.

"Migrating to Backupify takes 15 minutes," he said. "It's an all-Web-based model. Customers can log into their portal and see their backups and what's been restored. It's simple to use."

Also new from Datto is the Datto Networking Appliance, or DNA, router. The DNA router is a new appliance that serves to protect data in transit between customers' data centers and MSPs' clouds, Gibbons said. It can be configured in the cloud to reduce manual visits to storage sites, and includes 4G failover in case of a disaster.

The DNA router supports up to six ports for use with SMB clients, but can be daisy-chained if more ports are needed, he said.

Calzone, who first saw the DNA router when it was demonstrated at the partner conference, said he looks forward to getting the device when it is released some time this fall.

"The integration of the hardware looks good, and the router has great features," he said. "I especially like how, if someone makes a configuration change that does not make sense, the router will tell you what the problem is and what you need to do to make it work."

Datto also unveiled a new relationship with ownCloud, a Lexington, Mass.-based developer of open source technology that adds file sync, share and collaboration to users' own storage hardware to form a private cloud. Gibbons said Datto is integrating ownCloud on its SIRIS business continuity appliances.

Datto's implementation of ownCloud on its SIRIS platform includes a relay service that lets customers use public URLs to connect to ownCloud, Gibbons said. "ownCloud is a great Dropbox replacement in the office, but not remotely," he said. "With our relay service, they can access data on ownCloud from wherever they are."

Datto's integration with ownCloud gives customers an alternative to Microsoft OneDrive or Box for cloud-based file sync and share, Calzone said.

"For road warriors, the Datto integration will be significant," he said. "Datto is looking to become a one-stop shop. OwnCloud fits well with its overall portfolio."

Also new from Datto is an upgraded partner portal that lets solution providers manage all Datto products from a single console, Gibbons said. "All a customer's Datto devices can be seen in a single unified stream on a smartphone or in a browser," he said. "It auto-arranges the devices according to priority based on critical issues that need to be addressed."