StorageCraft Cloud Services - Secure Your Backups in the StorageCraft Cloud

What is StorageCraft Cloud Services, and who should use it?

With StorageCraft® Cloud Services, you can store a copy of your encrypted StorageCraft ShadowProtect® or StorageCraft ShadowProtect SPX backup images in the secure StorageCraft cloud. When you do, you extend your recovery capabilities beyond your four walls—should your business experience a major local disaster, you’ll have the tools you need to quickly recover data, even virtualize your machines and re-create your network in the cloud. StorageCraft Cloud Services is for IT professionals who want to take the next step in assuring their organization’s disaster resistance.  

If you’re a managed service provider (MSP), you can provide reliable cloud services to your clients and enjoy low setup, management, and overhead costs. MSPs also appreciate the control they maintain in the StorageCraft cloud as well as the ability to scale cloud usage as their client base grows.

StorageCraft Recover-Ability logoStorageCraft Cloud Services is a part of StorageCraft Recover-Ability. This disaster recovery solution provides you with the products and services you need to recover systems, applications, and data every time, everywhere, and from any disaster, including site-wide or region-wide events.

Plan your recovery from a site-wide disaster

In a small disaster—the kicked power plug, a computer virus, faulty or aged equipment—your local ShadowProtect or SPX backups enable you to recover IT systems and data. But a major disaster can destroy local backup images. A business that doesn’t have copies of its backup images stored offsite may never rebound from the downtime and data loss it faces during a major disaster.

StorageCraft Cloud Services stores your backups remotely so you’re prepared for the worst. Create your local backup images with ShadowProtect or SPX, and then replicate those backups offsite to the StorageCraft cloud with StorageCraft ImageManager (6.7.2 or later). (You can even seed the cloud with your base backup image and any existing consolidated incremental images by replicating them to a physical StorageCraft seed drive and shipping it to us—this saves your network bandwidth.)

Built using enterprise-grade, redundant hardware and high-availability system design, our cloud is purpose-built for disaster recovery. Our privacy and security measures ensure that only you can access your stored backup images—and that those backups remain safe no matter what. Should a local disaster strike, be confident you can get your data. Recover individual files and folders or virtualize systems in the cloud (choose from our three service levels for the protection that meets your organization’s needs).

As soon as you’re ready, restore your system to replacement hardware onsite by using the StorageCraft Bare Metal Restore (BMR) process. Simply request a BMR drive, which contains your ShadowProtect or SPX backup images. The StorageCraft Recovery Environment will enable you to quickly restore your full system from the BMR drive with minimal downtime. (If you choose Cloud Premium and run a virtual machine in the cloud during a disaster, you can automatically download any incremental backups created after your drive was created and shipped, which makes recovery even easier.)

Uptime that keeps your business operational

Examples of when IT professionals use StorageCraft Cloud Services:

  • Virtualizing a failed server or network after a server room flood or building fire (requires Cloud Premium)
  • Accessing files and folders immediately from anywhere you have an Internet connection when a hurricane or other disaster shuts down offices
  • Archiving important data so it’s available via a shipped BMR drive regardless of what befalls the business
  • Restoring systems and data to replacement hardware onsite using a BMR drive shipped from the StorageCraft data center
  • Having an offsite backup copy that can be easily used in a disaster and that requires low setup, management, and overhead costs
  • Enjoying cloud access with strong security, solid uptime record, and access controls
  • Getting a mirrored data center without having to maintain it
  • Having the option of choosing a different level of cloud protection for each machine in order to stay within budget and business continuity constraints

Features and benefits of StorageCraft Cloud Services

cloud security iconSecurity and Availability

Know that your offsite data backup is safe and always available inside our distributed, scalable, fault-tolerant cloud built specifically for disaster recovery

Our cloud:

  • Boasts a 99.99 percent uptime record
  • Meets or exceeds Telecommunications Infrastructure Standards for data centers (TIA-942) as well as meets or exceeds Tier 3 requirements
  • Is monitored and managed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year by the StorageCraft Network Operations Center (NOC)
  • Was built using redundant firewalls and other enterprise-grade security and encryption models to ensure the most secure cloud hardware and software architecture possible
  • Features client-configurable firewalls for every recovered network running in the StorageCraft cloud (requires Cloud Premium)

service levels iconService Levels and Mirroring

Customize your cloud storage to fit your organization’s business continuity needs and budget, whether your IT environment is small and straightforward or large and complex

  • Choose from three service levels, depending on whether you need instant network virtualization, immediate file and folder recovery, or just archiving of critical data
  • Mirror your backups to a second StorageCraft data center for added redundancy
  • Configure service levels and mirroring to be the same or different for each machine
  • Aggregate total storage needs across machines, departments, and clients and pay only for the storage you use (rounded to the nearest gigabyte)
  • Increase your storage or upgrade your service level with ease

control, flexibility iconControl and Flexibility

Centrally manage and monitor all your StorageCraft Cloud Services accounts as well as fail over in a disaster without intervention from StorageCraft

  • Replicate your encrypted and password-protected ShadowProtect or SPX backup images over a secure SSH internet connection—files stay encrypted, and only you have the encryption password
  • Configure and customize firewall settings for your recovered networks running in the cloud (requires Cloud Premium)
  • Customize account permissions and, if you choose, allow clients to access data files, reserve IP addresses, request seed drives, and do a host of other functions in the cloud
  • Monitor used space, view backup arrival status, set backup retention policies, and configure alerts for events such as “seed drive arrival,” “upload activity,” or “explosive growth”
  • Test your disaster recovery abilities using hands-on verification methods
  • Access stored data and fail over instantly—no need to wait for StorageCraft (failover requires Cloud Premium)

advanced networking iconAdvanced Network-Recovery Functions

Hit the ground running after a disaster with advanced networking features (available with Cloud Premium) that enable you to run your network in our cloud just as you’d run it onsite

  • Access and update your recovery network through OpenVPN or IPsec to enable site-to-site, one-user, or organization-wide VPN connections
  • Configure your recovery network to meet your unique needs with:
    • Port forwarding
    • Port blocking
    • Network control options such as Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP)
    • Independent recovery networks
    • Static public and private IP address reservations (for a nominal fee)
    • Dynamic private IP addresses that are available at the time of a disaster

 

Want to learn more or get your hands on a printable document?

See our support documentation, listed below, for more information:

  • Data Sheet – an overview complete with features and benefits
  • Product Brief – a look at IT challenges and how this product helps you resolve them
  • Seeding Quick Start Guide – instructions for how to seed the StorageCraft cloud
  • BMR Quick Start Guide – steps to take to restore from a cloud BMR drive
  • User Guide – the user manual—step-by-step instructions
  • Legacy User Guide – the old user manual—step-by-step instructions
  • ReadMe – a supplement to the user guide—system requirements, enhancements, issues

Cloud Service Levels

Since every organization’s needs are different, StorageCraft Cloud Services is available in three service levels. In addition, you can choose to have your data mirrored to a second data center. (Mirroring means that all backup images stored in the primary data center are also backed up at a second data center in a different geographic region).

Service LevelsWhat's included 
Cloud BasicArchiving of your critical business backups; ability to request a BMR drive (a BMR drive contains your stored ShadowProtect or SPX images and enables you to restore your system to replacement hardware onsite)Cloud Basic mirrored for additional fee
Cloud +Everything in Cloud Basic plus immediate file and folder recovery

Cloud + mirrored for additional fee

Cloud PremiumEverything in Cloud + as well as instant virtualization of your systems and data (multi-server and network failover is possible, meaning it temporarily takes the place of your offices during a disaster)Cloud Premium mirrored for additional fee

Note: You have seven days after setting the service level for a specific machine to change the service level before it gets locked in. There is also a seven-day waiting period if you change service levels after the initial seven-day period, and service-level changes go into effect at the beginning of the next month after the seven-day waiting period is over.

For additional features and limitations of each service level, see StorageCraft Cloud Services User Guide: Service Levels

Storage purchase methods

Pay only for the storage you use because you aggregate your total storage needs across machines, departments, and clients.

  • MSPs pay per gigabyte of storage used and are billed on a monthly basis (rounded to the nearest gigabyte).
     
  • Value added resellers and other customers pre-purchase storage in blocks (similar to a gift card model).

Screenshots

Click on an image for a larger view:

Add Cloud Account Options screenshot
 
Custom Email Alerts Via Cloud screenshot
 
Networking screenshot

Technical Information

Cloud storage details

File and folder access, as well as full virtualization, in the StorageCraft cloud can be near instantaneous if the data is stored with minimal compression. When a device is initially uploaded to the cloud, the amount of storage space used will be roughly the same as the amount used on the original volume.

The cloud space used will be larger than the space required by the locally compressed ShadowProtect or SPX image(s). As recovery points are sent to the StorageCraft cloud, the storage space used in the cloud will be larger because of the additional cloud recovery points.

To reduce the amount of space used in the StorageCraft cloud, users may leverage a separate retention policy independent of the local StorageCraft ImageManager retention policy.

Populating the cloud

Before populating the StorageCraft cloud, you need to encrypt your ShadowProtect or SPX backups if you’re not already doing so. You can upload your backups to the cloud in two ways: stream directly or use our seeding service.

To ensure your seed drives are properly packaged for safe transit, we require the use of StorageCraft seed drives, which you can request for a nominal fee. You’ll receive up to four 2TB drives and a burly, hard-sided box with foam padding.

Requirements

Please note that use of StorageCraft Cloud Services requires:

  • ShadowProtect or SPX backup software
  • StorageCraft ImageManager 6.7.2 or later

For a complete list of requirements, please visit StorageCraft Cloud Services User Guide: cloud requirements and restrictions