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Posts Tagged ‘datto’

RansomWare Attacks Up 50% in Last Year

Monday, May 1st, 2017


According to ZDNet, in THIS article, Ransomware attacks are up a whopping 50% over the last year.  They are now the #1 source of data loss and business downtime exceeding all other reasons.

This article gives you the details and even history of RansomWare which actually dates all the way back to 1989.

Ransomware creators are now working with criminal enterprises where instead of selling the Ransomware to the criminals, they take a 50% cut on all proceeds.
On average, Ransomware takes a victim offline for at least a week.  That alone could shutter many small businesses.

The rise of BitCoin has helped Ransomware.  In the earlier days, credit cards were used for payments but most major credit card processing companies banned the use of credit cards for this purpose leaving no way for the creators of Ransomware to get paid for the unlocking keys.  With BitCoin, they have a completely untraceable way of getting paid, although its orders of magnitude harder for the victim to figure out how to buy and transfer BitCoin versus using a credit card.
The best way to avoid Ransomware is via vigilence around your users Internet activities.  The usual warnings of never clicking unknown links in email or web pages.   However, its almost inevitable that someone may not be careful, or may be in a rush and it only takes one person in your office to unleash Ransomware on every computer.

Using our EverSafe! solution, you will get an immediate notification if Ransomware is detected on your network.  At that point, you can remove the Ransomware. Without EverSafe!, removing Ransomware usually leaves your data that has been encrypted, now forever destroyed.
With EverSafe!, you can just restore all of your data how it appeared only minutes before the infection, and you are back up and running with virtually no downtime or data loss.

Microsoft Azure… Epicor, Microsoft Dynamics NAV & AX and SAP Business One now has a Cloud Answer

Monday, March 13th, 2017


Microsoft Azure is the perfect solution for hosting your ERP System. In the past there were stand alone data centers that would let you install your solution. However, they were essentially remote fixed servers. The same as hosting in your office, just at a more secure or robust location.

After spending over $20 Billion Dollars!, Microsoft has built a worldwide infrastructure that allows for a level of reliability, scalability and cost effectiveness that was only a dream just a few years ago.

With Azure we get 24x7x365 worldwide monitoring and support to run your mission critical applications. Using Clients First Business Solutions, a Microsoft Gold Azure Partner, we can manage and host your Epicor ERP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV and AX or SAP Business One solution in the worlds most powerful public cloud.

Advantages include

  • No need for a physical environment, power, cooling and heating
  • A global infrastructure for security, backup, and management
  • The ability for ‘compute on demand’ and scaling capabilities.  We can automatically bring up additional application servers during your busiest periods and yet you don’t pay for them when things are quiet.
  • We can scale up the performance of your servers as you grow.  We can literally ‘add memory and processors’, while your users continue to use the system with no downtime.
  • The ability to use a specialized partner, like Clients First, to manage your infrastructure with the same level of connectivity and support as your internal IT resources.  Let them focus on your strategic growth visions and let us be the ERP specialists so they don’t have to.  Asking your IT department to manage your ERP system is like asking your personal doctor, a general practitioner, to also be a heart surgeon when needed.

The Cloud isn’t the right solution for everyone and don’t let your software vendor box you into a solution built for their profitability, not yours.  With Clients First, you can take advantage of the lower cost of ownership of perpetual ERP licensing while having the same or better full cloud offloading of local IT responsibility and with no limitations in what you can do to customize your system for your company’s needs.

If On-Premise is right for you, Clients First’s IT specialists and our EverSafe Business Continuity solution can still provide for you the same level of managed ‘no headache’ services as a cloud solution.

Clients First has spent years perfecting the managing and hosting of ERP systems on public clouds.  It’s not as simple as simply subscribing to Azure and installing your software there.  We’ve developed a significant amount of IP (Intellectual Property) around the ability to have your ERP system run in a public cloud but still feel as if it’s installed in the room next door.  Standalone public clouds like Azure or Amazon S3 will not touch your ERP solution whatsoever.  They are only responsible for keeping the operating system up and running.  When you host through Clients First’s Azure Hosting, its a ‘one throat to choke’ managed service solution.

We even have solutions for on-premise cellular fail-over should your Internet go down and make the cloud inaccessible at your office.

Whether you are hosting Epicor ERP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics AX or SAP Business One, let Clients First Business solutions be your go to partner for ‘lights out’ headache free uptime.

Automatic Server Failover – A New Information Page

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

If you’ve ever wanted a solution that doesn’t just back up your data, but ensures that no matter what happens, virus, disk crash or disaster, your company can be up and running again in minutes, your wait is over.

Our new information page summarizes EverSafe! and includes and short informational video as well.

EverSafe! constantly replicates your live servers all day long.  In the event of a problem, you can quickly ‘flip a switch’ and be operating on the EverSafe! appliance while you wait the hours, days or even weeks to address your primary server issues.  In the event your entire building is damaged or destroyed, EverSafe! is sending copies of your servers to two bi-coastal data centers in the cloud which you can bring online and operate from in less than 30 minutes.

Its just that simple.

See it here:

Standby server

Datto vs Axcient: A Comparison

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

For end to end comprehensive Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery solutions on the mind for so many companies ravaged by outages and weather, we compare the two most popular solutions for small and mid-sized companies


Boxing men

by Mark Chinsky

Note: Updated 11/11/13

Ever since the back to back hits of Hurricane Irene & Sandy in the Northeast, many companies have realized that traditional backup isn’t enough.  The two leaders in the “Hybrid Cloud” based backup solutions are Datto and Axcient.  Hybrid cloud means you have hardware on your premises keeping your data and ability to failover during the most common types of failures very fast and painless, yet if you suffer a true disaster on premise, you can fail over to servers hosted in the Cloud which involve a bit more when you need to fail back.

There are many Disaster Recovery solutions consisting of just Cloud services, just local hardware, or just local software, but very few that cover the entire spectrum of coverage in one cohesive easy to use solution designed for non technical folks to utilize.  During a disaster you don’t want to have to be dependent on your one 20 year IT veteran as that person could be unavailable, on vacation with no internet access, or simply can’t find gas to fuel his car and get to your office as was the case during Sandy.

Datto and Axcient cover everything with very integrated and simplified solutions where you just have one point of contact and one solution to ensure everything is covered and typically at a lower cost than the multiple pieces of the puzzle of using other options together.

To be clear, Clients First Technology Solutions is a Datto Partner and markets our own customized line of their solutions at  However, we spent months researching the various options on the market before we made our decision to build our business around Datto.  We looked at technology, company track record, likelyhood of long term survivability as an entity, track record of any OEM components used, technical support structure and responsiveness, reliability of the solution and overall fit to our needs and those of our customers.

Datto vs Axcient:

  • Financing:
    • Datto is a firm founded by an operating systems & development ‘genius’, Austin McChord.  He heads up the company he founded and at age 28 is one of the fastest rising tech industry CEO’s.  I like to think of him as the Steve Jobs of Disaster Recovery. Austin is still involved in designing and testing new development of the solutions.  When he’s talking about Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery to the many industry groups he speaks with, you know he actually knows what he’s talking about and not just reading from talking points.  He wants to build great solutions and knows that when you build something great, they tend to sell themselves, just like Apple.  Datto has NO Debt and has a 5300% CAGR growth rate since its founding.
      • In September of 2013, Datto took on an investment partner and 2 board members, including the former co-founder and CTO of VMWare.  This funding was not in anyway for day to day operations, but to allow for rapid expansion overseas to take advantage of the growing market and to get the great technical insite of these new board members.
    • Axcient is a creation of Venture Capital and is constantly being propped up annually by more outside funding.  When you look at companies who were built organically (Apple, Google etc), versus ‘.com’ type companies that were created to eventually be sold for a big profit, the organic companies have a much stronger and longer track record.  If you pay for a 3 year upfront subscription you want to know your vendor is going to be around for the long run to be in this industry and not a just an investment vehicle for bankers
  • Platforms
    • Axcient can failover for both Windows and Linxus
    • Datto can Failover Windows and can backup Linux and Mac and is Time Machine compliant as a Time Capsule.  If you need near real-time failover for Linux, than Axcient is probably your better choice
  • Agent vs. Agentless
    • Axcient is an Agentless solution.  Datto’s CEO does a nice job explaining the difference here.  In summary, the advantage of an Agentless solution is there is nothing to install on the destination server and it does not require a reboot after installation.  Axcient uses VSS to backup in use files like Exchange or SQL
    • Datto uses an Agent which is part of their ShadowSnap engine.  The advantage of an agent is it can monitor block level changes as they occur on your hard disks.  This means when its time to backup, it can instantly just jump to the sectors changed and back them up.  Agentless solutions need to traverse the whole file system looking for changed data making backups take longer and putting a much greater load on the source server during backup.  Because of this Datto can backup your servers as often as 12x/hour vs. Axcient at 4x/hour.  Datto also uses both VSS & STC to backup ‘in use’ files like Exchange or SQL.  If VSS fails Datto automatically fails over to STC providing a higher percentage of good backups .
  • Storage Method
    • Axcient stores its backup data in a proprietary format.  It needs to go through a lengthy conversion process if you need to pull out a VMDK (VMware) or VHD (Hyper-V).
    • Datto backups are already stored in industry standard VMware VMDK format and are ready to be spun up instantly or mounted/exported to another Virtual Host without a lengthy conversion.
  • Incremental Method
    • Axcient uses “Reverse Incremental” technology.  This means your last backup always is an accumulation of those before is so if you deleted a prior incremental or if a prior one was damaged, it has no effect on the ability to use the latest backup.  This is a BIG benefit over traditional incremental designs.  Plus it means you don’t have to await for it to re-assemble your latest image from all of the past incrementals before you start using your data.
    • Datto uses “Inverse Chain” technology which is combined with Sun’s unique ZFS File system.  Apple’s Time Machine is based on this same concept.  This means like Axcient, your latest restore point is always ready to run and be used.  However, unlike Axcient, ANY past restore point is also in a state where its ready to run and requires no lengthy rebuild process like Axcient.  If you are making say two backups per hour but discovered a virus hit you 2 hours ago, with Axcient you’ll need to wait for it to re-assemble the 3 hour ago backup image before you can fail over.  Datto is ready to fail over in under 30 seconds in most cases.
  • Local Virtualization
    • Axcient requires a conversion from its proprietary storage file to VMDK before it can spin up your server in the appliance.  For a small 500GB server, this can take 5 minutes or longer.  If you need to go back through multiple images looking for the point in time before your virus hit your system, this 5 minute lag can become very substantial.  For larger servers, this conversion process will take longer .
    • Datto has already stored every restore point in a VMDK.  Thanks to the miracle of ZFS, each one is tiny (usually megabytes) but represents a full size image of your server whether its 500GB or 5TB
  • Backup while Virtualized
    • If you are failed over to the Axcient Device it is no longer taking backups of itself.  Perhaps you are awaiting 2 weeks for new hardware to arrive.  As unlikely as it might sound, what if you suffered a disaster during that time, or even a serious virus?  Your latest backup could be two weeks old.
    • Datto continues to backup your virtualized machine even while you are running on the appliance.  That backup is still being sent to two cloud datacenters all the while you are failed over to the appliance.  If you got hit with a ‘double whammy’ you would still lose little to no data
  • Bare Metal Restore
    • Axcient  can inject drivers as you restore to new hardware to hopefully alleviate driver incompatibilities
    • Datto can also inject drivers, but also looks for additional or newer drivers from both their and StorageCraft’s web database which is more comprehensive than what fits inside the local device
    • Datto can also restore to replacement servers who’s volumes are smaller than your original server.  Axcient cannot
  • Off-Site Storage
    • Axcient and Datto use similar extremely secure technologies and procedures for off site backup and both are SSAE 16 certified data centers.  However, Axcient has only one data center in the US.  Axcient is based in California and we’ve been unable to locate where its data center is.  If it’s in California, that tends to be a region prone to many types of natural disasters
    • Datto has two bi-coastal data centers in Pennsylvania and Utah.  Both are in historically very low natural disaster impact zones.  Essentially Datto pays for twice as much storage as Axcient as your data is duplicated in two centers but they feel a customer who’s life depends on the ability to know their data is secure and ready to run, needs to know there is redundancy in every part of the solution.
  • Off-Site Seeding
    • Axcient requires customers to send their initial backups by shipping hard drives at their own expense.  These drives aren’t encrypted and the time to complete varies
    • Datto allows customers to do initial backups via the cloud with accurate ETA readouts, or the client can choose to do a round trip drive, at no expense, including Datto paid for shipping.  The drive has the option to be encrypted during transit and turnaround time is guaranteed to be < 1 week.
  • Off-Site Virtualization
    • Axcient takes hours to mount and bring your servers on-line in the cloud.  There is an additional fee being charged from the moment you virtualize in the cloud
    • With Datto you can spin up your servers in the cloud in the same <30 second time you can on-site.  They allow you 30 days per server of virtualization time in the cloud per year.  Typically you will get a free seeded replacement appliance sent to you in a disaster situation long before your 30 days would be used up.  This also makes it easy to do your own off-site testing.
  • Customer Support
    • Axcient provides support 9am to 8pm EST M-F.  Response time varies with severity, with the highest severity being 4 hour response
    • Datto provides full time US Based telephone support 24x7x365.  Response times vary by priority with Urgent & Emergency being <1 hour.    Sometimes a disaster doesn’t wait for a convenient time to happen

Find out more about EverSafe!, powered by Datto


Why choose Clients First Technology Solutions for your Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity needs?  It’s all about Focus.  Our entire division is focused on Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery through our tight partnership with Datto.  Look around on the web, you won’t find a single other BDR partner with the focus, knowledge and on-line resources as Clients First and our EverSafe!, Powered by Datto solution.  For most others, Business Continuity solutions are just an after thought to their main lines of business doing IT support.  It’s like going to general practitioner for heart surgery.  Our solutions require specific experience and expertise as well as the ability to help customers evaluate the entire Disaster Recovery Plans, beyond just IT solutions.  As a matter of fact, if you have an existing IT services company, we aren’t here to replace them, we want to work cooperatively with them as specialists in this arena.

If you choose to go with Datto, reach us below via the Chat button.  We can usually match a price  you receive with a level of service that is 100% dedicated to this product line and industry.

Check out and see what a dedicated Disaster Recovery & Business Continuity specialty firm really looks like.