What is our primary use case?
Typically, most of our customers that have been using this solution have been using it when they need to have some sort of local recovery, but they want to have a cloud-based solution in the event of a disaster. We've been kind of using it as our disaster solution as a company. We sell it to the customers as a local recovery with the ability to failover to the local appliance, and then In the event of a true disaster, failover to the cloud. Our use case is basically for anybody who needs to have a local failover or local availability for a high RTO, RPO type of thing.
We are a managed service provider, so we typically manage this solution for the customer. We have access to it, but the customers usually have one or two people that also have access to it. In most cases, they are either the systems administrator or whoever's in charge of backup and recovery. They have access to the console so that they can do basic recovery of regular files and folders as needed. Anytime there's any type of, let's say, a major restore — so restoring the entire VM or back to a physical box, or even failing over to the appliance —, that's something that we would be involved in and we would do.
What is most valuable?
The ability to failover to the appliance and run as if it was a similar production environment with minimal impact on the actual business until recovery needed — this has been really useful for our clients.
What needs improvement?
One of the areas that I would absolutely say that they should improve, is the recovery from the backup when you're running in a failover mode. In other words, if I have to bring the server online on the appliance (so I'm running on the backup image), there should be a way for me to replicate back to or restore back to the hardware or the original source, and then, in the end, you would do a Delta sync and switch over.
As of today, I have to shut everything down and the entire resource has to be offline while I'm doing the recovery. So having the ability to kind of recover while running would be a great feature to have.
Also, when you failover to the appliance, it doesn't retain the IP information. I have to go in and update the IP information for each of the boxes that I have to fill up. If you're only doing one or two, it's not really a big deal, but if you had to failover, for example, 10-12 boxes because an entire EM infrastructure went down hardware-wise for some reason, you have to know all those IPs and go in and set them up and restart them — that can take a little bit of time. So retaining the IP information would be great.
For how long have I used the solution?
We were using another solution when it merged into 360Recover. Technically, we've been using 360Recover ever since it was rebranded.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
It's super stable. We really like it. We've tweaked a lot of it ourselves and partially because we really believe in the product and we've been using it for so long that we've become very proficient at it. When it works, it just works really well.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
It's scalable to a certain degree.
How are customer service and technical support?
They're actually really good and they're very responsive. In most cases, you open up a ticket, and within a day, they usually have responded back saying that they've looked into it or they need to look into it with you. Then they kind of go through the resolution process with you, whatever it happens to be. In some cases, they do it in the background and they just send an email like, "Hey, it's fixed." So depending on what it is, the support there has really been really good. We're very happy with the customer support.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We had used a couple of different products. The closest one that we used at the time was Datto. We had some issues with Datto. When we were looking at competing products, I just kind of found the solution that would become Axcient x360Recover. I demoed it out, I spoke to a couple of people and I decided to try it on one of our customers — one of our smaller customers that were open to being a Guinea pig for us. When we started working with that customer, it was a really simple product that works really well. We didn't have to contact support to do the things that we needed to do. For example, if I wanted to export the entire machine, I could easily do it. If I wanted to change the IP address, I could easily do it.
I could actually get back-end access and console access to purge some data. So it became a lot more user-friendly for us as an MSP to manage the appliance and manage the backups without having to call support for every little thing.
So that with the ability to deploy it very quickly and efficiently and effectively. It's super reliable. The fact that we have unlimited cloud retention is great for us and our customers. It started to become a win-win all the way around. So we decided to make the move.
How was the initial setup?
The initial setup is very straightforward. It doesn't take very long to implement at all. It's a great product. We really like it.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
I believe that (if I'm not mistaken), there are a couple of different pricing models. Early on, we were using the storage based model. It's a fee for however much backup storage you had and if you use a limited number of servers, as long as you stayed within that storage retention. They range from $199, $299, $399, all the way up to whatever it is that you need it to be, or a list price for individual server licenses — I think it was roughly $70 or $75 per server with two terabytes of storage and roughly $10 or $15 for the workstations. We've bought so much of it that our pricing is much better.
What other advice do I have?
The only thing I would say is demo it out for yourself, see how easy it is to implement, do a failover from your production or your development, and failover to the appliance to see how seamless that seems to work out. It'll pretty much sell itself for the most part. The only real downside is that the recovery process requires you to shut down the actual resource while you're doing the restore. There's a couple of other competitors out there that allow you to restore online while it's up and running. I do know that that's in that pipeline, but, in most cases, most backup solutions when you have to recover from a disaster, the resource is offline during that recovery anyway, so it's not like it's a black eye on the product. To make that last little step so much better would be to have that replication and recovery in the background with the Delta sync before switch would be almost ideal.
Overall, on a scale from one to ten, I would give this solution a rating of nine.
Which version of this solution are you currently using?