March 29, 2012
windows 8 cloud backupMicrosoft (MSFT) is developing a cloud-based backup service for Windows Server 8. New details about the Microsoft Online Backup Service surfaced on the Microsoft Windows Server blog earlier today. On the one hand, the Microsoft cloud service could potentially compete with established online backup companies. But on the other hand, Microsoft is opening up the Online Backup Service to partners. Here’s some timely perspective from The VAR Guy.
Microsoft is offering Windows Server 8 testers a free beta of the Online Backup Service with up to 10 GB of storage. But Microsoft offers this caveat:
Please note that there are a limited number of customers that we can support during the beta and we will grow our capacity over time. We have available slots right now so if you are willing to give us feedback, sign up now to try this great new service.
Approved testers can download and install the Microsoft Online Backup Agent and get started.
Connecting Windows Server 8 to a Microsoft-developed, cloud-based backup service sounds like a natural, logical step. But key questions remain:
How much will the Microsoft Online Backup Service actually cost?
Will the Microsoft Online Backup Service ever address non-Windows servers?
What type of fees, if any, can partners earn for reselling the Microsoft Online Backup Service?
How fast can the Microsoft Online Backup Service restore customer data?
The Microsoft Online Backup Service is based on Windows Azure, which suffered a major leap year cloud outage.
Those are Big Questions. And so far: There are not clear answers. For most VARs, that means the logical choice is to continue using established cloud-based backup services that offer cross-platform support and clear SLA (service level agreement) terms.
Still, Microsoft offered this intriguing side note: The Microsoft Online Backup Service has an API that allows partners to offer their own backup solution.
Hmmm… That’s fascinating…
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