Linux Desktop: Seven Leading Applications: Page 5

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5. Acronis’ True Image Family

What it does: Provides enterprise-class backup and recovery for Linux servers, workstations, and desktops.

How it will help you: We’ve all heard this one before: back up your data, often. Yet, it’s like eating your vegetables. Not everyone does it as often as they should, even if they know it’s good for them.

In the enterprise setting, you can’t trust backups to good intentions. Automated backup and disaster recovery are a must, and any worthwhile enterprise-class solution must have the ability to create compact, ready-to-deploy images.

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Acronis True Image 9.1 Workstation provides bare-metal restore capabilities for both workstations and desktops. System administrators can create exact images of hard drives, allowing complete restores with all of the necessary software and drivers already installed.

If Linux hopes to compete in the corporate desktop market, solutions for quickly deploying new machines in a distributed environment are a must. Acronis Snap Deploy 2.0 meets this need, enabling enterprise users to create a standard configuration for a new PC or server that can be can then be quickly deployed.

What’s more immediately relevant for most organizations, though, is Arcronis True Image 9.1 for Linux Server, since many mission-critical servers are already running Linux. True Image Server for Linux creates exact server disk images that include OSes, applications and configurations, while also backing up mission-critical databases.

After any crash, it allows users to perform a full system restore, a bare-metal restore or just a restore of individual files and folders, depending on the severity of the crash. True Image Server for Linux creates a server disk backup image without interrupting server operations.

Upgrades in the more recent versions of its products include support for virtualization and transportable images. Acronis also offers Windows versions of its products, as well as products geared for the consumer market.

Obstacles to Adoption: First off, Acronis’ real market is still Windows. When it comes to Linux, their focus has been on the server market, since there really isn’t much of a corporate Linux desktop market yet.

That said, the market leader for Windows-based imaging and backup products is Symantec with its Norton Ghost. Response to Symantec’s version of Ghost that supports Linux, though, has been less than stellar, providing a potential opportunity for Acronis.

Partimage, an open-source imaging utility, is fine for home users, but most corporate users want more bells and whistles. Other alternatives include Zmanda’s Amanda, Storix Backup Administrator, and Acreia’s backup solutions. SOHO and mid-tier users may also consider products from Yosemite.

Developer: Acronis, in Burlington, MA.

Management Team: Walter Scott, CEO, previously served as the CEO of Imceda Software. Ed Harnish, VP of marketing, and Ellan Murphy, VP of sales, were also formerly with Imceda. Max Tsypliaev, co-founder and chairman.

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