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Microsoft Targets SMBs with Data Protection Manager

Windows shops looking to reduce the time it takes to complete backups and recoveries have a new solution available to them in Microsoft's System Center Data Protection Manager. DPM, which started shipping this week, implements a disk-based backup and disaster recovery system, and is designed to replace tape drives and libraries, which are significantly slower than disk. With a starting price of $950, Microsoft expects to have success pushing DPM into the small and mid size business market.

The rationales behind the adoption of disk-based backup are well documented and convincing. The rise of the Internet and global e-commerce has shrunk backup windows and planned downtime, while the amount of data requiring storage continues to grow by 30 percent per year or more. Traditional tape technology continues to struggle with reliability. Restoration failure rates are consistently running between 25 to 40 percent, according to analyst firms and software vendors. Meanwhile, new regulations like HIPAA and SOX are pushing companies to get a better handle on their data and processes through information lifecycle management (ILM) techniques, and the continued price reduction of ATA and SATA disk is providing an affordable platform on which to implement ILM. Add it all up, and you have a lot of market momentum behind disk-based backup, which can be seen in the dozens of new disk-based backup offerings unveiled over the past year.

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