EVault's Got Your Back(Up)

By Lauren Simonds | Posted October 14, 2004
We here at SmallBusinessComputing.com keep hammering away at how important it is for small business owners to keep their business data safe, and by that we mean regularly backing up the data your business couldn't survive without.

Granted, it's not always easy, especially if technology 's not your favorite topic to begin with, and you don't have an IT staff. You have to figure out the best method for your needs, buy and then install the hardware and software — and then make sure to keep a copy off site. EVault, a Walnut Creek, Calif.-based online data backup and recovery company, recently announced a service it says will make backup a lot easier for SMBS — EVault Small Business Edition (SBE).

Who's It For?
The SBE service is geared for smaller companies with less than 15GB of server data and with a maximum of five servers. You don't have to purchase any additional hardware, you don't have to buy and manage any software licenses and the service uses your existing broadband connection.

According to Phil Gilmour, EVault's CEO, the service is perfect for companies with no IT staff and little technical expertise. "EVault assigns each customer a dedicated customer service engineer who then walks the customer through the software installation and configuration process over the phone — a process that takes about 20 to 30 minutes," he says. "You can't measure the technology," says Gilmour, "but you can measure customer satisfaction, and about 98 percent of our SBE customers tell us the product is very easy to use."

Benefits
SMBs that use online data backup no longer have to manage tape-based backup systems or worry that a critical backup didn't happen because someone forgot to put a fresh tape in the system. Your data will also be better protected since companies like EVault provide a level of security that most SMBs simply can't afford.

Begin Backup
EVault calls that first system backup "seeding." During the installation, the customer (and the EVault rep) configured a daily time for the system to initiate backup. The first back up copies all of the data files on your server.

At first glance, 15GB might not seem like a huge amount of data when you consider the enormous size of today's hard drives. EVault SBE performs incremental or block-level backup, meaning that after the seed backup, EVault SBE's daily backup saves only the data changes you've made since the last backup.

Maintaining Security
Data security is a primary concern for every company but especially for companies in the medical, financial industries. Sending your data over the Internet may cause initial concern, but Gilmour says that EVault uses SSL 128-bit encryption to keep data secure. "The EVault software agent checks for all changes since the last backup and then encrypts and compresses the information," he says. "The data remains encrypted at all times — at the customer's location, en route and in our storage server facility."


EVault Small Business Edition backup wizard
EVault designed its Small Business Edition to be installed by non-technical staff in less than 20 minutes.

According to Gilmour, storing your business data off site with EVault has several advantages. The company maintains five state-of-the-art data vaults throughout the United States. It maintains redundant systems so that if any part should fail, there's always a backup path to your data. Those systems include multiple paths to the Internet, power supplies, back up generators and data mirroring in two systems.

Recovering Your Data
Of course the whole point of data backup is be able to recover it. EVault offers two ways to do just that. Should a single file become corrupted, you open the recovery program on your PC. You'll see a tree of files and folders — simply click on the file or folder you want recovered. If your company experiences data disaster (like a server crash), and you need to recover a lot of data quickly, EVault takes the recovered data and places it incrementally on to removable media and ships the data to you.

Pricing
EVault charges a $139 per-server or PC set-up fee. Monthly charges vary depending on how much storage you need. The company charges $20 for each additional GB.

  • 0-2GB — $50/month
  • 3-5GB — $85/month
  • 6-10GB — $165/month
  • 11-15GB — $240/month

Lauren Simonds is the managing editor of SmallBusinessComputing.com

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