Acronis, Inc., the technological leader in storage management software, released an update to its family of Windows-based server- and enterprise-class workstation Acronis True Image products. Key among the updates is the ability to restore a system to entirely different hardware — a feature known as Universal Restore, and the ability to boot a remote computer to restore a system partition. These capabilities will be added to Acronis True Image Enterprise Server, Acronis True Image Server for Windows and Acronis True Image Workstation (formerly Corporate Workstation).
Among the updates to the corporate family of disaster recovery and backup applications are the ability to start and stop database applications using the Microsoft's Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) technology in order to create a point-in-time snapshot of the database, support for 64-bit hardware and software, plus the ability to restore a system by booting directly from the system's image. The software also has been tested on beta versions of Microsoft Vista and performs exactly the same way as it does on other server-class operating systems from Microsoft.
The Acronis True Image corporate product family also a number of additional capabilities designed to improve IT storage management:
- Restore to different hardware — Complete disaster recovery by ensuring that systems can be restored to any hardware or virtual machine;
- Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) support — Online backup of mission critical applications, such as Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle;
- 64-bit Windows support — Use one application for both new and old systems;
- Remote unattended restores with the Acronis bootable agent — Recover all systems in the network from one central location (for Enterprise Server and Workstation only);
- Boot from an image, using Acronis Snap Restore™ — Decrease downtime by allowing systems to be used during a recovery;
- Automatic image verification — Peace of mind by ensuring that images can be used for restoration;
- Differential backups — Decrease the number of backups you manage;
- File backups, in addition to our traditional image backups — Flexible system protection;
- Exclude files from backups — Capture only business data and save space in storage archives ensuring that you;
- Windows Event Log and SNMP support — Facilitates administration by plugging into your existing network monitoring application;
- Custom scripts before/after backups — Facilitate compliance with company-wide backup policies;
- Throttling to control hard disk write speed and network bandwidth usage — Minimize disruptions of business operations;
- Create CDs with bootable images, PXE packages, and bootable recovery media ISOs — Eliminate the need to have separate recovery media and provides flexibility for application management.
Broadleaf Services, an East Coast firm that specializes in reducing the cost and complexity of storing and protecting data, recommends the use of Acronis True Image Server for Windows. "Acronis is our first choice for migrating our clients from locally attached storage to new EqualLogic iSCSI storage area networks," said Glenn Fund, senior engineer at Broadleaf Services. "Acronis migrations are faster and more space efficient than other competitive products. With the new 9.1 release of the product, Acronis has provided additional modularity. As a result, we are no longer restricted to volume only imaging. We can now image or restore entire volumes or just select folders and files."
"Daily full, incremental and now differential backups can now be scheduled and run unattended," he continued. "This makes True Image Server an ideal tool to replace critical, slower and potentially more error-prone tape based backup/restore operations. All Acronis full, incremental and differential images can be brought online in seconds and utilized as alternate recovery or test volumes."
"For business continuity purposes, Broadleaf recommends that our clients archive all of their server boot drives using Acronis," Fund added. "Should a server go down, a replacement server could be brought online, the boot drive quickly restored with all other volumes and data existing and readily attachable from the SAN."
"Expanding our capabilities for enterprise and standalone server customers is a priority at Acronis," said CEO Walter Scott. "Backup and disaster recovery are part of an overall corporate strategy for business continuity. By providing world-class capabilities that can operate either as the primary disaster recovery strategy or as a component of a larger, enterprise-class systems management framework, Acronis has the tools to effectively meet any enterprise need. This includes both physical and virtual servers."
"Acronis understands that corporate users have a choice when it comes to backup options," he continued. "However, we also recognize that if a product is too complex to use or doesn't provide a fail-safe backup, it won't be used, and that is a bad business decision. Acronis products make the IT manager's job easier by providing advanced, enterprise-class backup capabilities that are actually useful and provide a fast return on investment. They are not complex, partial solutions that are difficult to use and therefore expensive clutter on the server."
"As a first responder in the case of an emergency, El Camino Hospital recognizes its responsibility to ensure that its servers are always available," said Brad Miller, Technical Services Manager at El Camino Hospital in Mountain View, CA. "We must be able to bring up downed servers immediately, and Acronis True Image Enterprise Server has proven itself to be capable of restoring a server to a known, working condition in literally minutes."
"Additionally, we see its Universal Restore capability as being absolutely essential," he continued. "Should a server fail, we need absolute assurance that we can restore that server to any available hardware. Acronis True Image Enterprise Server provides that assurance."
"Disaster recovery plans often ignore the business, human and vendor coordination required to make them relevant," said Gartner analyst Barry Runyon in his June 2005 report "Consider the Challenges of Safety, Availability and Affordability in Disaster Recovery Plans". "IT leadership must ensure that disaster recovery plans are realistic and represent thoughtful input from key constituents. To remain useful, they must also be regularly revisited, updated and tested."
"Restoring a system to a known, working state fast and efficiently is everything when it comes to business continuity and disaster recovery," added Stephen Lawton, marketing director for Acronis. "By providing such mission-critical capabilities as restoring to different hardware, support for 64- and 32-bit hardware and software environments, and restoring a remote system without having to actually touch the system, IT managers now have a broad range of new time- and staff-saving capabilities that will significantly reduce downtime and increase productivity. And," he added, "since these are easy to test and validate, there is no reason an IT department shouldn't be ready for whatever gets thrown its way."
Acronis True Image Enterprise Server has a suggested list price that starts at $999. Acronis True Image Server for Windows lists for $699, while Acronis True Image Workstation starts at $79.99.
About Acronis Asia, Pte ltd.
Acronis offers storage management solutions that are technically advanced for mission-critical applications but easy to use. The company provides disaster recovery, backup and restore, partitioning, boot management, privacy, data migration, and other storage management products for enterprises, corporations and consumers of any qualification. For additional information, please visit our website.