Cloud offers comfort in wake of Japan earthquake

Nirvanix offers customers data migration out of the region

One of the biggest benefits of cloud storage became clear last week when cloud storage provider Nirvanix, in the aftermath of the Japan earthquake and Tsunami, offered its customers the ability to relocate their data from a data center in Tokyo to one in another location.

With cloud storage, access to storage data is transparent -- users accessing the data don't need to know where it is located or how it got there, as long as it's always there. Corporations, on the other hand, frequently need to be able to point out exactly where their data resides, for both legal and out-of-region requirements. To that extent, customers can store data in one of seven Nirvanix data centers located across three continents and for additional availability have it replicated between widely distributed data centers.

Of the seven data centers Nirvanix operates, the one in Tokyo was not affected by the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan a week ago. But to allay customer's fears for the possible loss of data as the effects of the disaster ensue, Nirvanix also offered that the migration of this data from the Tokyo data center would be free.

Will iPad 2 supplies be hurt by Japanese quake?

There would be no costs for transferring data out of the old location and transferring data into the new location — a cost that is sometimes overlooked by customers seeking to deploy cloud storage services and only looking at the raw cost of storing data in the cloud.

Several cloud storage providers, including Amazon S3 and Windows Azure charge customers for transferring data out and into the cloud and this charge can rapidly mount up when wanting to relocate data. Other cloud storage vendors can bundle these charges into a single all-inclusive monthly fee that looks attractive to potential customers, but may result in overpaying for cloud storage. Nirvanix offers customers all uploads, downloads, bandwidth and replication for a single flat monthly rate, which ranges from $0.15-$0.25 per GB, depending on the application

Nirvanix is waiving these costs, for customers whose data is stored in the Tokyo data center. Customers can move their data temporarily for 30 days, or if they want to permanently shift their data to another continent, the choice is entirely theirs — free of charge.

This is not only a humanitarian move for Nirvanix, but one that has real business impact. Customers wishing to migrate data from one area of the cloud to another will not only be able to protect their data in an uninterrupted fashion but set up a new disaster recovery location for it, and do it at a significant cost savings.

Recent IDC research indicates that 50% of all data will be in public clouds by 2014. For anybody doubting or questioning the value of the cloud, the ability to leverage a public cloud storage network during this type of tragedy really solidifies its place in our future for business continuity, data protection and collaboration. A global grid of interconnected nodes that cross-communicate with each other at all times, not a series of isolated storage machines, is the future of this industry.


Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

The 10 most powerful companies in enterprise networking 2022