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Keene State Shrinks Backup Times by 95 Percent

Keene State College in New Hampshire has implemented a new disk-based backup system with data deduplication that has reduced backup times for the college's main file server by 95 percent, from 20 hours to 45 minutes.

The college's IT department had been looking for a solution that would decrease the time required for backups and provide greater reliability than its existing system, which used a combination of attached storage and tape. After evaluating a variety of backup devices on the market, the team chose the ExaGrid EX Series from ExaGrid Systems. It's a disk-based backup system with data deduplication, which works with the college's existing backup software, Symantec Backup Exec, to back up the college's main file server, Microsoft Exchange databases, and VMware environment.

"Decreasing our backup windows and the time the IT team spent on backups each night was a huge factor in why we chose to implement an ExaGrid appliance," said Kevin Forrest, system administrator for Keene State College, in a prepared statement. "Since installation, backup times have decreased significantly and we're all able to sleep better at night knowing our data will be completely backed up by the time we arrive to work each morning."

The scalability of the ExaGrid system also appealed to Keene's IT team. According to ExaGrid, the system uses a unique approach to disk backup that combines processing resources with disk capacity, so when the system scales, it scales both, unlike other systems that add disk capacity without adding corresponding resources for processing.

Other higher education institutions that have implemented ExaGrid backup systems recently include Furman University, Plymouth State University, and Sarah Lawrence College. Furman replaced its aging tape library, reducing its backup data 22-to-1 and cutting nightly backup times by 75 percent. Plymouth State also moved from a tape backup system, achieving data deduplication ratios as high as 20-to-1 and cutting its backup time in half. Sarah Lawrence College replaced its tape system and cut its backup time from 24 to 36 hours per week to 10 to 12 hours.

Further information about ExaGrid's disk-based backup system with data deduplication can be found on ExaGrid System`s site.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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