White Paper

Raising The Bar For Reliability

Business Continuity/BDR, Network Security, PSA, & RMM

According to FEMA, as many as 60% of small businesses never recover after a disaster and are forced to close, highlighting the need not only for trustworthy backups, but also for the ability to keep systems running. In many cases, it is an IT failure that escalates disasters such as power failures, flooding and security breaches. MSPs need infrastructure that protects critical business data for their customers in order to continue to operate. If the backup fails, MSPs struggle to satisfy customers when it matters most.

Datto’s business continuity products empower MSPs with backup reliability and consistent restoration outcomes. When disaster strikes and systems go down, MSPs need to know that their backups are in good standing so they can be the hero for their customer. This lack of downtime provides end users with an edge when local competitors lack the ability to bounce back quickly.

Uptime, All The Time

Business continuity is more than backup and recovery. Going beyond simply recovering data, business continuity saves businesses by keeping them online in the face of otherwise devastating issues such as ransomware, malware, natural disasters, network downtime and costly human errors. Most importantly, business continuity offers end users the ability to immediately get business systems back up and running.

Not All Business Continuity Is Created Equal

Many business continuity systems are not reliable. And this lack of reliability can cause MSPs to lose customers because of unplanned downtime. Extensive restore times from file backups, backup failures and the inability to restore data for their customers present major pain points for the MSP. Datto eliminates those concerns by designing and delivering better backup and restore options that give MSPs confidence in their data protection and enable them to instantly virtualize from the Datto Cloud.

Backup Confidence

When a system goes down, getting that system back up and running quickly is every MSP’s goal. All too often however, a backup will fail, causing the MSP to lose confidence in the backup and recovery process. Datto
empowers MSPs with 100% confidence in their backups by validating and protecting client data.

Backup Validation

Lack of consistency in backup performance means MSPs have to do more work to keep customers in operation. In order to ensure backup integrity, an integrated approach is necessary as there is no single feature that guarantees a backup can be recovered. File-based backup and recovery offerings don’t backup the entire system, therefore they are not a reliable fix during a disaster. By protecting data beyond the operating system level, Datto’s image-based backup provides end users with a more comprehensive rescue than traditional file-based backup systems. These image-based backups also include a better backup chain and backup verification to eliminate the possibility that backups won’t work. This means MSPs can focus on their business rather than worrying about backup integrity or risking problems when restoring. Building backups with Datto’s Inverse Chain Technology and Advanced Backup Verification delivers tremendous value by ensuring the system will boot -- with all volumes and applications intact -- and will be successfully recovered.

Inverse Chain Technology

Datto’s proprietary Inverse Chain technology combats the high failure rates associated with most backup offerings and leverages the snapshot and clone capabilities within ZFS for efficient storage management. Inverse Chain provides freedom over other types of chains such as traditional backup chain, reverse chain, synthetic full and incremental forever, enabling more frequent backups and flexibility over incrementals. If a single point in the backup chain is corrupted or compromised, other vendors with image-based backups may not be able to recover the entirety of data, making the integrity of their backups questionable. Datto’s backups are more resilient and have the best available recovery point and recovery time objective for the value.

Advanced Backup Verification

Most MSPs do not realize a client’s backup failed until they need to restore during a disaster. Historically, backup testing has been a difficult, manual process and as a result, most MSPs don’t do it. Datto pioneered Screenshot Verification to provide MSPs with the ability to automatically verify backups are able to boot when the backup is taken. However, verifying the backup will boot only provides a certain amount of confidence.

Advanced Backup Verification takes Datto’s patented Screenshot Verification to the next level to give MSPs 100% confidence in their backups. Not only does the system use Screenshot Verification to ensure the backup will boot, it also uses Local Verification (file system, volume, VSS, and ransomware checks), application and service verification, and support for custom verification scripts to verify all aspects of the system being backed up. Datto’s support for custom scripts means that important third-party client tools such as electronic medical records holding patient data can be properly verified. Verification is run when the backup is taken, eliminating the need to scramble during recovery time, at which point it is too late.

Getting Back to Production

Reliability isn’t just about having a good backup; It’s also about consistently getting end users back online. Because each disaster is different, Datto equips MSPs to back up and recover virtually any system. Understanding that there is no one size fits all solution for the issues that MSPs face, and that not having the right restore option could cost the MSP  valuable time, Datto delivers more restore options than anyone else in this market.

Restore options in Datto’s Unified Continuity product line range from granular restore -- to recover specific files, to bare metal restore with fast failback -- to restore entire systems and minimize unnecessary downtime.

File Restoration

Sometimes a restore is as small as a few files or folders deleted because of human error; in those scenarios, Datto’s File and Direct Restore can recover files and folders to help save the day for panicked customers. File Restore is available from the web UI, making it remotely accessible. The Direct Restore Utility, a fully automated software application that enables MSPs to mount any image back on their machine, enables MSPs to restore one or many files with their meta data and settings preserved.

Rapid Rollback

Performing a restore because of unwanted changes to a large amount of files or an unsuccessful OS or application update presents a number of challenges. In these scenarios, a simple file restore is cumbersome due to the time it takes to manually identify and restore everything. Rapid Rollback is a tool designed specifically for these scenarios, and negates the need for MSPs to perform a complete restoration of the system.

Bare Metal Restore with Fast Failback

Datto’s Bare Metal Restore (BMR) is for use when a system is so catastrophically damaged that the only option is to completely rebuild it from the ground up. While a BMR is in progress, customers can continue business operations by failing over with Datto’s instant virtualization. The challenge occurs in capturing changes made while the customer is running in the virtual environment. With many business continuity products on the market, the MSP is required to plan downtime in order to copy those changes from the virtual environment back to the production system. By contrast, while a restore is in process, Datto’s Fast Failback technology copies any changes made in the virtualized state back to the production system -- with no downtime. This technology completely eliminates the need to plan for downtime, and enables MSPs to quickly recover from a catastrophic failure.

Instant Virtualization

When a production machine goes down, Datto’s Instant Virtualization enables an MSP to continue operating the downed machine locally or in the cloud. To facilitate this process, Datto constantly updates, validates, and stores backups making any restore point instantly virtualizable. There are no file conversions required during virtualization, further simplifying and accelerating the recovery process.

Instant Virtualization can be particularly helpful in the case of a ransomware attack. For many backup systems, when a ransomware attack is initiated, encrypted data can be copied to the backup and make the latest restore point unusable. With Datto’s Inverse Chain technology, aggressive ransomware can’t compromise an entire backup. Simply failover with Instant Virtualization, then revert to another recovery point. It’s that simple.

Reliable Backups Enable Reliable Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

Reliable backups empower MSPs to know that they can easily address end user’s data failures. Datto knows how important it is to MSPs to consistently deliver on their SLA promises. Backup verification empowers MSPs to trust in the reliability of the saved backup and to sleep better at night knowing their client data is protected. Backup verification also guarantees that less maintenance is necessary, as Datto’s technology eliminates the need to do manual testing to verify the state of the backup. When backup and restore options are trustworthy, MSPs save time which they can use to deliver more value to their customers.

Storage Protection

Datto delivers additional value to MSPs by ensuring that data is protected and stored under the best possible circumstances. With Datto’s geo-redundant private cloud storage, partners can rest easily during a disaster knowing that their data is physically protected, even if an entire region goes down. When it comes to storing data, MSPs can choose where in the world their data lives and have additional flexibility to create different retention schedules for local and off-site backups. By setting different retention schedules, the MSP can optimize WAN usage and still maintain the protection needed by their clients.

Datto Works For MSPs 24/7/365

Even under the best circumstances, technical challenges still appear. At Datto, reliability extends beyond the product itself. MSPs can rely on Datto Support to help them whenever they need it, 24/7/365. Although installation, backup and restore processes are simple, MSPs can directly access tech support when they need them -- by phone, chat or email at any time, day or night. Every day, Datto performs up to 50 disaster recoveries at no charge to partners, illustrating our commitment to support.

Datto Goes Beyond Backup

Datto products and services fully align with how MSPs deliver managed services. With monthly service pricing, time based and infinite cloud retention and 24/7/365 Direct-to-Tech support, Datto is committed to the channel. Tools such as MarketNow, a marketing automation platform available in the Datto partner portal, drive new customer acquisition. And if and when disaster strikes, MSPs can rest easily knowing their backups work, and if they need to, restoring a downed system can be accomplished quickly and easily. Datto continuously talks to and works with MSPs to better understand their needs in order to deliver products and add on services to raise the bar on backup reliability.