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CA Tailors Backup Software for Windows

Computer Associates International (CA) refreshed its popular BrightStor storage backup software, Monday reinforcing its ties with the Microsoft Windows platform in hopes of garnering more market share from its chief rival VERITAS .

While BrightStor ARCserve Backup r11 contains a number of new features, the key achievement, according to David Liff, vice president of storage product marketing worldwide at CA, has been closer alignment with key Microsoft storage features.

A multi-billion-dollar business for the last several years, data backup arguably remains most the important area of storage because more and more corporations have relied on computers to create and save crucial documents. Natural and synthetic disasters, as well as government regulations as a consequence of corporate accounting scandals, have greatly raised the need for records retention.

A renowned desktop software maker, Microsoft realized the potential to elbow in the segment and made its play. Since announcing its entrance full bore into the enterprise storage market two years ago, Microsoft has been garnering market share for its Windows Storage Server 2003, which was rolled out in September.

CA agreed with Microsoft's storage story and chose to support the top desktop platform maker as much as possible.

Liff said CA could add to the value of its products by tailoring BrightStor to support such key features as the new VSS (Volume Shadow Copy Service) feature in Microsoft Windows Server 2003. VSS works with BrightStor to create "snap-shot" copies of open volumes and application data sets for uninterrupted data backup.

Also in the mix are new multiplexing features, previously only available in high-end data management software, which boosts backup performance by enabling multiple backup jobs to be written to the same tape media concurrently.

With it, Liff told internetnews.com, backup for Windows can be pared from six and a half hours to just two.

"Multiplexing makes a big difference on restore speeds," Liff said, noting that CA's chief competitor VERITAS does not offer the capability in its comparable Backup Exec software. "With it, tuning time is almost negligible."

BrightStor r11 for Windows also comes with a "pre-flight check" feature that scans for issues with backup jobs before the administrator leaves for the night, as well as seamless backup for laptops and desktops.

The new BrightStor also supports Windows Storage Server 2003 and WORM (write once, read many) devices to ensure regulatory compliance.

BrightStor ARCserve Backup r11 for Windows also guards data on NetWare, Linux, UNIX and MAC OS X servers and clients. It supports the three key storage formats, including DAS (Direct Attached Storage) , NAS (Network Attached Storage) and SAN (Storage Area Network)

Pricing for BrightStor ARCserve Backup r11 for Windows starts at USD$775. CA is also offering, for USD$995, a version tailored for Microsoft's Small Business Server, which includes agents for Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft SQL Server, Open Files and Windows workstations. Pricing for BrightStor ARCserve Backup for Laptops & Desktops begins at USD$495.