Tier1 Research: “Geminare adds more cloud options for disaster recovery as a service”

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Geminare adds more cloud options for disaster recovery as a service
Enterprise and Mass-Market Hosting

By Jim Davis, senior analyst
Tier 1 Research
May 17, 2010

Using the cloud to back up to the cloud – that’s how Geminare’s recently released update to its Control Platform can be summarized. The business implications are of interest to both cloud IaaS providers and hosting companies looking to provide value-add services on top of their own cloud offerings.

The technology

Geminare’s software platform controls application processes from ordering, provisioning and billing to control and management. The firm currently offers two services on this platform: a server replication offering for business continuity and a cloud storage service.
While the software was designed to enable backup and disaster recovery to and from the cloud, its software platform was originally intended to run on customer servers, or on Geminare’s servers at colocation facilities. Without needing to use an on-site appliance to replicate server images, however, the firm was able to develop an updated platform that would enable its software to run on the cloud platforms of telco partners that it was talking to, as well as run on Amazon EC2.
From that foundation, Geminare 2.0 Server Replication service can capture changes on file servers, and then compress, archive and encrypt the data for storage on nearly any cloud service now.

New use cases

Apart from being able to run DR services completely from within a cloud infrastructure, Geminare has customers using its platform to do cloud migration and to create ‘sandboxes’ in a new cloud environment, do some testing and development and fail back to production servers if need be.

Customers

Hosting.com is the newest company to announce that it is using the Geminare platform. Bell Canada and CA Inc remain key reseller partners. A deal with a large US telco is soon to be announced.
One key aspect to opening up the platform to more cloud environments is that customers were OK with having data replicated back to servers in Canada (where Geminare is based), but not to the US, for concerns over data privacy related to the Homeland Security Act. Now customers in the UK, Germany and elsewhere have new options for running the Geminare platform that could help drive business even further.

T1R take

Geminare’s update to its core platform is more important than just adding a few new features. It further opens the company to partnerships with telcos and hosting companies that otherwise wouldn’t have wanted to enable storage on competing clouds. The firm’s ability to drive deals with customers in Europe is improved as well, since firms have been reluctant to use any US-based cloud for data backup. Geminare’s position in the cloud storage arena is growing stronger as cloud providers look to add stickier, higher-margin services on top of commodity storage.