Briefing Update, CIO, Data Center

Moving Beyond Backups to Enterprise-Data-as-a-Service

What do you do when your disaster recovery turns into a plain old disaster? Well, if you’re the large media corporation News-Press & Gazette Company (NPG), you turn to Actifio for help. And you get even more than you expected. Our friends at Actifio recently shared a handful of interesting case studies with us, and I found this one particularly interesting.

St. Joseph, Missouri-based NPG owns a wide range of media throughout the Midwest, including TV and radio stations, and newspapers. It also has two datacenters, and that’s where the story begins. When a routine data backup went awry, a huge amount of data was lost — data used to sell advertising, which happens to be a primary source of revenue for a company like this. Ouch.

Enter Actifio. NPG brought in the company shortly after the data loss fiasco, realizing that its own plan wasn’t getting the job done. Actifio started with a straightforward, effective DR implementation using Resiliency Director. It worked great, restoring some of NPG’s peace of mind.

That was only the beginning though. NPG, worried about its ability to crunch and analyze data in a timely-enough manner to stay competitive, soon realized that Actifio could do much more than just DR. The next step was to come up with a comprehensive data management solution across the enterprise. That’s where Actifio’s broader Enterprise-Data-as-a-Service (EDaaS) solution comes in. The EDaaS architecture eliminates many issues plaguing traditional data management solutions: incomplete, time-consuming backups, lengthy recoveries, cost overruns and poor cloud migration performance.

Problem solved. With EDaaS, NPG got striking improvements in backup, DR and long-term data retention for all its data-centric applications, from analytics and business intelligence (BI) to warehousing. EDaaS’ effectiveness stems from its application-centric approach; it doesn’t just look at data management from an infrastructure perspective. This allows for features like instant virtual point-in-time copies of app data, on-premises or in the cloud. With this design, Actifio reduces duplicate data, providing greater efficiency across hybrid infrastructures and enabling users to access data the same way they access applications: as a service.

And that little DR problem? Gone. NPG can restore data and critical business functions much more quickly and economically than before.

Actifio does all this while keeping costs reasonable. NPG CIO Matt Hoskins explains: “Support is a big deal in today’s environment. If we can’t solve a problem, there is an Actifio engineer that can help us quickly; I don’t have to hire Actifio experts to get the maximum return from our investment.”

It may have started in disaster for NPG; but with Actifio’s help, it ended in a much better place. If you’re interested in learning more, as I was, you can dig in to a good-sized library of resources here.