StarWind Enables Cloud Storage for IBM i System Line


Beverly, MA, April 06, 2024 – StarWind, a leading provider of hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) for Enterprise ROBO, SMB, & Edge, introduces an affordable backup cloud storage for IBM i systems. Seamless integration with an existing tape backup infrastructure is achieved by emulating a tape library (VTL), the one IBM i knows how to deal with. StarWind VTL is a complementary, rather than competitive, solution, where the virtual tape provides an additional local backup copy for better resiliency and faster recovery, with an extra copy offloaded to a cost-effective public cloud. This air-gapped “extra” copy of the backup data, stored in an immutable cloud, serves one more purpose – insurance against ransomware. Amazon AWS, Google GCP, and Microsoft Azure are fully supported as backup destinations, including long term storage like AWS Glacier, Google & Azure Archive. In general, any S3-compatible cloud storage will work.

“Love it or hate it, but tapes are here to stay, and we’re dedicated to improving life with them. We’re thrilled to provide IBM i systems with a money-saving cloud storage they deserve. As of now more organizations can achieve greater cost efficiency, better resiliency to ransomware, more of flexibility, and scalability when it comes to their backup strategy,” said Artem Berman, co-founding partner at StarWind.

Over 40,000 companies in the U.S. alone continue to rely on IBM i systems to power critical operations. Various sectors such as finance, banking, healthcare, manufacturing, telecommunications, logistics, government, and others heavily depend on the non-stop data processing that IBM i systems provide. Traditionally, these environments relied on IBM Backup, Recovery, and Media Services (BRMS) for tape backup processing. Although tapes are rock-solid, deadly-reliable, and provide best bang for the buck, they often present limitations in backup and restore performance. Tapes are evolving over the time, but any StarWind-powered all-flash VTL is always faster in both backup and restore. Cost-efficiency is another consideration, as while tapes are inexpensive, archival object storage in the cloud is even more budget-friendly for long-term data retention. Air-gapped immutability is an important component of ransomware resiliency, a crucial part of a comprehensive ransomware prevention and recovery strategy.

“Algenol Biotech chose StarWind VTL because of its reasonable price and required functionality. It was easily integrated into the established backup and archival process of the company without any changes. In addition, StarWind VTL automated and secured offsite backup and archival by eliminating the human process, thereby determining the reliability of the backup process. StarWind VTL provided the much-needed backup solution for the control network of Algenol Biotech’s manufacturing plant, ensuring data protection and integrity,” said Tom Ziegler, Network Systems Administrator at Algenol Biotech.

The seamless integration of StarWind VTL into existing BRMS-centric backup infrastructures enables organizations to introduce a disk & flash-based backup tier, which significantly improves backup and, especially, restore performance. Additionally, the built-in cloud storage tier enables the replication of backup and archive data to Amazon AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, Wasabi, Backblaze B2, and other cloud storage providers, allowing to cut down the long-term data retention costs. This approach not only boosts performance and cuts operational expenses but also capitalizes on existing hardware and backup processes, optimizing overall IT efficiency without duplicating efforts.

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