EMC, Lenovo offer unlimited SMB backup service

Lenovo and EMC on Wednesday announced an effort to free small businesses from the hassles of data backup by offering an unlimited Mozy storage service for Lenovo's SL series laptops.

In the first such deal for the Mozy division, buyers of the small-business SL laptops will be able to sign up for a special hosted service for backing up an unlimited amount of data. With the regular Mozy Pro service, subscribers pay per gigabyte and per user.

The Lenovo Online Data Backup offering with unlimited storage is priced at US$79.20 per year for a limited time and, so far, is available only in English in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Ireland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines and Singapore. The regular price will be $99 per year. By year's end, Lenovo aims to offer it in more countries and in six other languages.

Data protection has become a more critical concern with growing documentation requirements and increasing reliance on IT, even by small companies. Mozy's services let users back up the data on their PCs without having to buy and manage storage capacity. Mozy has its roots in backup services for consumers but is trying to expand its reach to businesses. It started offering Mozy Pro last year and was acquired by EMC in October. Of Mozy's approximately 850,000 subscribers, only about 23,000 are businesses.

With Mozy, users can have backups run without closing their files or shutting down applications, according to the company. They can also set how much of their Internet bandwidth the backup service takes up while it's working.

With the introduction of the Lenovo-branded service, Mozy is also upgrading its system for privately managed encryption to AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) from the Blowfish technology that it has previously used, said Devin Knighton, a Mozy spokesman. The stronger encryption is also available to other Mozy users.

The Lenovo-branded service is designed specifically for individual users in small businesses, unlike Mozy Pro, which costs $3.95 per user license per month in addition to $0.50 per gigabyte of storage per month.

In addition to the unlimited service, buyers of the Lenovo laptops can get a service with a 50G-byte ceiling for $48.99 per year for a limited time, with a regular price of $69. They can also try out Lenovo Online Data Backup with a free three-month trial that has a 5G-byte limit.

Also on Wednesday, Mozy announced it has opened its first data center outside the U.S., in Dublin. The new center will help businesses in Europe meet European Union data-privacy laws that require information to be stored within the E.U., and it should increase international use of Mozy, Knighton said. Today, only about 25 percent of Mozy users are outside the U.S., he said.

The six additional languages set for later this year are French, German, Italian, Japanese, Universal Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese, and more will come next year, according to Knighton. He did not detail the additional rollout by countries. Eventually, the service will be available worldwide, he said.

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