Are All Clouds Created Equal? The Rise of the Purpose Built Cloud

Feb 18, 2015

Are All Clouds Created Equal? The Rise of the Purpose Built Cloud

BY John DeWolf

BCDR

Information Technology professionals are all about the cloud in 2015. According to TechTarget’s annual IT priorities survey, cloud services are among the technologies that IT pros will focus on this year. In Europe, for example, cloud services are the “single most popular area of budget increases at growth-oriented companies, representing a 48% increase compared to 39% and 43% for hardware and software, respectively.”

With the rise of the cloud, companies are leveraging cloud technologies as part of their data protection processes and there is an assumption among most that all clouds are created equal. But is that really the case?

Storage Switzerland analyst, George Crump investigates cloud options with a specific focus on data storage, backup and recovery in his recent report “Cloud Backups - Purpose Built vs. Public Cloud”.

As businesses look to cloud backup solutions for their data, these solutions typically leverage a generic cloud - for example, Amazon or Google. While these clouds are absolutely trustworthy places for your data, they were never designed with data backup and recovery in mind. A purpose built cloud, however, is designed for a specific purpose….such as backup and recovery.

According to George Crump, there are a few key areas to think about where a purpose built cloud may be better suited for your business. Below we highlight three of these areas:

Support

At some point almost any data protection and disaster recovery solutions will need support. Customers should consider support, specifically their access to support to be a top priority for their data backups residing in the cloud. This is an area where a purpose built cloud provider may have an edge since they own the data center, the equipment in that data center, the on-premises appliance and the software and therefore should be able to fully troubleshoot any problem and find resolution quicker compared to the public cloud.

Cloud Backup Bandwidth

When it comes to public clouds, bandwidth utilization may have to be divided up among a wide variety of other applications. Remember that restoring data uses network bandwidth as they transfer data to the originating business.

In a purpose built cloud, for example, one built specifically for backup and recovery, there won’t be any other unrelated tasks running so the ability to manage data recovery for customers throughout the day should never be an issue.

Disaster Recovery as a Service

What is Disaster Recovery as a Service? If a cloud backup solution customer has a server or data center outage, the provider can host the specific application in their cloud, saving time to recover the data. But this takes resources so DRaaS may be challenging for a software developer using a generic cloud provider since they don’t have direct control over the network and compute resources.

In conclusion, the IT manager or business owner cares most about the software solution they are installing and will diligently go through the quality and capabilities of the solution but it’s equally as critical to evaluate the cloud destination where company data will be stored. Organizations should understand and test each cloud type - public, purpose built, hybrid to confirm that their cloud destination can handle data backups and restores.

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