Articles & Guides

SmartPick Backup Adds Virtual Appliances for Private Cloud Online Backup

Cliff Boodoosingh on August 15, 2011
15 August: SmartPick Backup, a San Jose, California based developer of data backup appliances and services, and a VMware Technology Access Partner, announced the introduction of a new series of virtual SmartFiler data backup appliances. The new series of virtual data backup appliances are ideal for businesses that prefer to use their existing hardware and cut backup implementation costs. The virtual appliances run on VMware Player (available as a free download from VMware); they can also be used with VMware Workstation and ESX/ESXi. SmartFilers are available in various sizes ranging from 10GB to 500GB and maybe downloaded from the company website. The 10GB version is FREE. More information is available on the VMware Virtual Appliance Marketplace at VMware website.

“With our virtual appliances, small and medium businesses can now backup large amounts of data onsite and offsite using their existing desktop computer, NAS, or USB drive infrastructure. There is no need to invest in additional hardware or make monthly payments to online backup providers for data backup.In essence, they own the solution and have the power to create their own private cloud”, says Swami Nathan, Founder of SmartPick Backup.These virtual appliances are also ideal for businesses that have invested in VMware technologies and SAN storage.

The virtual appliances come with the same enterprise class features available on the physical SmartFiler appliances. These include scheduled daily and weekly backups, snapshots for point in time data recovery daily, and are integrated with Symantec’s Backup Exec System Recovery 2010 for Exchange Server backup without tapes, bare metals restore, and backing up third party databases. All virtual SmartFiler backup appliances come with a 30-days free trial enabling businesses to try a virtual appliance even if their data storage requirements are only met by a physical SmartFiler backup appliance.Trials can be downloaded from the website.

The virtual SmartFiler backup solution is simple. Use VMware Player or VMware Workstation to run these appliances. Install the Onsite SmartFiler on a desktop computer, USB drive, or NAS; install the Offsite SmartFiler on a removable USB drive. After the initial backup, relocate the Offsite SmartFiler to a remote location. The Onsite SmartFiler will continue to perform the incremental backup to the remote Offsite SmartFiler.

The physical appliances are designed for quick configuration and “plug-and-play” scenarios and range in storage capacity from 500GB to 10TB, RAID 5 enabled.

Three distinct “private cloud” solutions are available for SMBs to backup critical data. The first solution comprises of two virtual appliances; the second is made up of two physical appliances, while the third provides for a hybrid model that uses a virtual appliance onsite and a physical appliance offsite.

The monthly charges for an online backup service include the cost of using their backup servers, data center, Internet bandwidth, and associated maintenance charges. The SmartFiler Backup Appliance solution lets the users keep their offsite appliance at a secure place of their choice where they have Internet connectivity and power, for which they are already paying. In addition, the SmartFiler virtual appliance solution allows the use of an existing desktop PC as a backup appliance. There is no need to pay for these incidental costs to any online backup service provider. For example, a 100GB SmartFiler virtual appliance solution used to backup 5 computers onsite and offsite costs $399. This is a one-time expense. Compare that with Carbonite and Mozy Pro online solutions. For 3 years of online backup, one could end up paying close to $885 to Carbonite or $2050 to Mozy Backup, and that too, just for offsite backup only.

“Our backup appliances can backup unlimited number of servers in a heterogeneous network consisting of Windows and Unix servers, without any additional software or per computer licensing fees”, adds Suren Lalapet, Co-Founder of SmartPick Backup.

The solution is a self-contained appliance. Restoring data is easy; simply drag and drop the backed up files to a restore location. Configuration is simple and is done using a browser. An integrated dashboard provides details and status information; there is provision to setup email notifications that report on items such as the success or failure of a backup, lost communications between the onsite and offsite, disk capacity used etc.

About SmartPick
SmartPick Backup ( is a San Jose, California based company that develops Backup Appliances, Backup Software, and Network Attached Storage. It is privately held.

About VMware
VMware provides virtualization and cloud infrastructure products and services. VMware is headquartered in Silicon Valley.

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