Expertos en TI is a small business in Barcelona, Spain, providing business consulting, IT hardware resale and integration, and data hosting using its own infrastructure. It supports sports portals, e-commerce sites, real estate sites, and classified advertising sites targeting Spanish and Latin American markets, as well as hosting ERP systems for some customers. The company has points of presence in the United Kingdom and France, and has plans for another in Spain.
Expertos en TI needs its customers’ virtual machines (VMs) to be always available to ensure the survival of the business, explains founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Sergi Morales. “If something breaks and we can’t restore it in a few hours, we will lose a customer. It will have an impact on our revenue, for sure,” he says.
Expertos en TI wanted a commercial VM backup solution that would reliably back up several dozen VMs it hosts for customers. Prior to January 2014, the company had tried using open source virtual machine backup tools to manage the backup process. Morales wasn’t happy with that method. Opening a virtual hard disk, copying a file or folder and sending it to a customer, or recovering a full VM, was a cumbersome procedure. “We weren’t comfortable using those tools,” Morales says.
The company also wanted an affordable product that could provide backups from its data centers in the United Kingdom and France.
Before using VM Explorer, an Expertos en TI employee was spending 20 percent of each week solving reliability problems with VMrelated backups. Now they spend less than five minutes to manage VM backups, Morales says.
“Our team is pretty small and senior, so spending time managing those backups instead of doing customer projects or improving our offering meant we were losing time and money,” Morales says.
“VM Explorer has saved us time, allowing us to focus on more productive things, so we have been able to increase our revenue 50 percent year on year.”
Switching to VM Explorer has made it easier for Expertos en TI to protect its customers’ data. The interface makes backup a simple process, says Morales. “You don’t have so many knobs to touch to get the job done. If we do something wrong, the user interface will warn us,” he says.
Morales receives a report via email once a backup is completed, letting him know the company’s data is protected. VM Explorer also gives him the ability to test his backups, so he is sure data can be recovered. He can also choose to restore individual files if necessary. VM Explorer also lets Morales offer his customers the ability to restore their VMs themselves.
These backup features are an essential part of the Expertos en TI service and critical in retaining customers.
“With VM Explorer we get peace of mind. If our service goes down, we have VM Explorer to recover and restore it within a few minutes,” says Morales. “Our customers must be confident we can restore the services as soon as possible. With VM Explorer we are able to provide that.”
Price was also an important consideration, with Morales saying VM Explorer is affordable.
VM Explorer is also flexible, allowing backup of VMs created with both VMware’s hypervisor and Microsoft’s Hyper-V (though nearly 90 percent of VMs at Expertos en TI are created with Hyper-V).
Morales also likes VM Explorer’s ability to restore Windows VMs and Linux ext4 VMs at the file level, both with and without the Logical Volume Manager. Some other backup tools do not offer this flexibility.
Our customers must be confident we can restore the services as soon as possible. With VM Explorer we are able to provide that.
VM Explorer has saved us time, allowing us to focus on more productive things, so we have been able to increase our revenue 50 percent year on year.