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San Francisco—June 09, 2014— Riverbed Technology (NASDAQ: RVBD), the leader in application performance infrastructure, today announced that Metricon, one of the largest new home builders in Australia, is using Riverbed® SteelStore™ (formerly Riverbed Whitewater) cloud storage gateway products to gain control of the growing volumes of data that need to be backed up and available for recovery. For Metricon, SteelStore has reduced data storage costs and volumes by 80%, shrunk data transfer times by weeks, and saved $28,000 annually on tape costs alone, as well as saved the company more than 400 hours annually that used to be spent backing up to tape. With its data stored in Microsoft Azure, Metricon has also improved the reliability and accessibility of document backups.
Established in 1976 with its head office in Melbourne, Metricon is one of the largest residential homebuilders in Australia, building thousands of homes each year.
To run a national, multi-office operation, keep mobile employees productive, boost employee efficiency and protect business data, Metricon's Information Technology (IT) Group continually looks for the latest and greatest technology solutions. Data backups are a critical part of Metricon's Melbourne data center resiliency strategy, but were consuming the IT staff's time, budget and peace of mind. In addition to home warranties, Metricon must keep copies of contracts and other documents on file for seven years to meet legal requirements. In 2014, after almost 40 years in business, the company had accumulated nearly 40 terabytes of data that it backed up to tapes and moved offsite for safekeeping. By early 2014, George Chen, server engineer in the Metricon IT Group, and a colleague were spending 10 hours a week managing backups. And, if employees needed access to an archived file, it took hours to retrieve.
"Our infrastructure team is not very big and backups were becoming a big time drain," said Chen. "They were taking time away from other maintenance tasks and from managing and improving our business-critical systems. Also, the integrity of tape backups was a concern. Our homes come with 25-year warranties, so we keep our backup tapes for decades. Tapes and tape drives break - we need to ensure that we have warranties and other documents on hand if our customers need them."
The company decided to look into moving its data backups to the cloud to reduce costs, improve speed of access, and simplify management. Metricon deployed Microsoft Azure, the Microsoft public cloud offering, and initially used another solution for backing up data. But, after a month of data transfer, much of Metricon's 39 terabytes still had not made it into Microsoft Azure due to backup software working too slowly over a standard Internet connection.
To speed up the transfer, Chen turned to SteelStore. Now, files are backed up to a local SteelStore appliance, which uses deduplication to eliminate redundancy in the data and then transfers files to Microsoft Azure based on access frequency. SteelStore keeps frequently accessed data cached on the appliance to improve recovery time while also ensuring that the entire data set is secured in Azure. SteelStore deduplication reduced the amount of Metricon data stored in the cloud from 39 terabytes to just 7 terabytes, accelerating the speed at which data was copied to Azure. Metricon still has the same backup policies-daily incremental backups and full weekly backups-but uses the low-cost, more secure, more available and instantly accessible public cloud as a storage tier rather than magnetic tape.
"By using Microsoft Azure and Riverbed SteelStore, we have reduced the time spent on backup by 80% - we are spending two hours a week instead of ten on backup work," added Chen. "We can use these eight extra hours for more important things such as rolling out Microsoft Office 2013, upgrading to Microsoft System Center 2012 Configuration Manager and deploying new technologies that improve the business. In addition, I worry less with all of our data backed up to the cloud. We also have much faster access to our files whenever we want them. Restoring files from SteelStore and Microsoft Azure takes minutes versus the hours required to request backups from offsite tapes. This keeps employees productive and the business moving without interruption."
"Our data is growing at a rate of about 20% a year, so reducing storage costs is important as the business grows," said Chen. "With Microsoft Azure, we can now accommodate data growth cost-effectively and with greater peace of mind. At their current growth rate, in five years, Metricon's storage footprint will be close to 100 terabytes of data, but with SteelStore, their data footprint will remain at a manageable 20 terabytes or less."
Riverbed SteelStore (formerly Whitewater) and the Riverbed Application Performance Platform™
Riverbed SteelStore seamlessly integrates cloud storage into a company's existing infrastructure to streamline data protection and reduce risk while reducing storage and data protection costs by up to 80%. With built-in replication capabilities, SteelStore provides instant data access at a second location while leveraging the industry's most cost-effective cloud storage. By deploying SteelStore as part of a company's data protection or archiving strategy, IT teams eliminate the headaches of tape-based systems, improve disaster recovery (DR) readiness and seamlessly integrate the cloud's high data durability and declining pricing into their infrastructure to deliver increased flexibility and ROI within months. Named Product of the Year by Storage magazine-SearchStorage.com in the category for backup hardware.
Riverbed SteelStore is part of the Riverbed Application Performance Platform™, the most complete platform that enables organizations to embrace location-independent computing, so that business objectives - not technical constraints - drive how applications and data are delivered. The Riverbed Application Performance Platform™ gives companies the flexibility to host applications and data in the locations that best serve the business while ensuring flawless application delivery to better leverage global resources, radically reduce the cost of running their business and maximize employee productivity.
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