any.cloud spent substantial time, money and effort designing, planning and implementing its hosting infrastructure to offer high availability to customers, but its agent-based backup tool was an impediment. The tool was so slow and error-prone that it was impossible to back up every hosted virtual machine (VM) daily; therefore any.cloud couldn’t even offer customers a recovery point objective (RPO) of 24 hours. Furthermore, a restore could take several hours, making it difficult to offer competitive recovery time objectives (RTOs).
“It was obvious we needed a solution that delivered true availability so we could offer customers short RPOs and RTOs,” said Benjamin Elveng, Chief Technical Officer at any.cloud. “With the right availability solution we could also leverage our hosting infrastructure and begin a new line of business by competing for large enterprise companies with on-premises VMs. With the right availability solution we could manage their backup and disaster recovery.”
The challenge was finding a reliable and affordable availability solution to power backup-as-a-service (BaaS) and disaster recovery-as-a-service (DRaaS). any.cloud felt the only way to win large enterprise customers was to offer a competitive recovery time and point objective (RTPO™).
any.cloud deployed Veeam® Backup & Replication™ in its hosting infrastructure to offer a 15-minute RTPO and acquire large enterprise customers. Elveng said Veeam was a game changer and door opener for any.cloud.
“Veeam Backup & Replication was a game changer for us because we were able to broaden our focus from traditional hosting services to availability services,” Elveng explained. “Veeam powers BaaS and DRaaS in our solution called Reverse Virtual (ReVirt).
Veeam Backup & Replication provided another game changer. Veeam makes it easy for any.cloud to provide Veeam customers with cloud-based DR and offsite backup. The capability is called Veeam Cloud Connect.
“Veeam Cloud Connect was a door opener for us because Veeam customers who manage their own VMs can choose us for backup and DR (BDR). We provide cloud repositories for their offsite backups, and we host their offsite VM replicas. We believe Veeam customers choose us over other providers because they see ‘instant activation’ next to our name in the service provider directory that Veeam provides online. Setup with any.cloud is instant because we use the Veeam API in ReVirt. Cloud repositories and cloud hosts appear in customers’ Veeam backup consoles in minutes.”
Not only did Veeam Cloud Connect provide a second new line of business for any.cloud (BDR for customers who manage their own VMs), it also enabled any.cloud to leverage its role as a Veeam value-added reseller (VAR) to seek new revenue opportunities. When prospective customers managing their own VMs want offsite backups and replicas, any.cloud recommends they deploy Veeam Backup & Replication on site and send their backups and replicas to any.cloud via Veeam Cloud Connect. Moreover, any. cloud has authorised select distributors to rebrand ReVirt for their customers to access with Veeam Cloud Connect.
Veeam also assists any.cloud in helping customers recover from malware.
“The CryptoLocker virus affected several customers, and they contacted us for advice about paying fees to unlock their data,” Elveng said. “Before we called them we restored their VMs with Veeam. When we told them their VMs were up and running, they thought we were joking at first. Then they were happy to learn they lost very little production time.”
Veeam provides yet another revenue opportunity for any.cloud. Veeam Endpoint Backup™ backs up customers’ Windows-based desktops and laptops, as well as those few remaining physical servers.
“We found an additional way to use Veeam Endpoint Backup,” Elveng said. “A customer wanted to move his on-premises Microsoft Hyper-V VMs to our hosting infrastructure, so we used Veeam Endpoint Backup as a converter. We treated each Hyper-V VM as a physical machine and restored it in our hosted VMware environment. We migrated 40 VMs within a few hours. It was such an easy way to onboard a hosting customer.
“That’s one of the things we like best about Veeam — its capabilities,” Elveng continued. “We find ourselves continually fine-tuning and optimising our environment based on Veeam’s capabilities. For example, the reason we chose HP 3PAR StoreServ for production storage is because it integrates with Veeam. We can make backups and replicas from storage snapshots every five minutes if that’s what a customer requires.”
Slashes RTPO to 15 minutes and creates a new line of business
any.cloud couldn’t even provide a 24-hour RTPO before deploying Veeam Backup & Replication in its hosting infrastructure. Reducing RTPO to 15 minutes with Veeam enabled any.cloud to provide availability services to customers and start a new line of business: BaaS and DRaaS for large enterprise companies managing their own VMs.
Generates a second new line of business and related revenue opportunities
Not only did Veeam Cloud Connect provide a second new line of business for any. cloud (BDR for customers managing their own VMs), it also enabled any.cloud to leverage its role as a Veeam reseller to seek related revenue opportunities. As a reseller, any.cloud recommends Veeam Backup & Replication to customers wanting offsite backups and replicas and authorises select distributors to rebrand ReVirt for their customers to access with Veeam Cloud Connect.
Onboards new hosting customers fast
Not only does Veeam Endpoint Backup back up customers’ remaining physical servers, it also helped any.cloud migrate one large customer’s on-premises VMs to any.cloud’s hosting infrastructure quickly and easily.