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EMC limps into SaaS game

'There's a new acronym we can hitch our disk to?'

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Storage behemoth EMC clearly wants to ride the wave of successful on-demand web applications that made headway in 2007. Or at least it wants to cash on the SaaS hype.

Today EMC is launching an online data protection service. You can consider this move a SaaS (software/storage as a service) toe-dipping exercise for EMC, although the vendor has threatened to get a little more wet once it's good and ready.

The new service is based on EMC's mutation of Mozy, the online backup and recovery suite from Berkley Data Systems, which the storage giant purchased last October.

EMC has re-launched the service as MozyEnterprise. It's largely the same as the existing MozyPro service EMC been hosting since the acquisition — with a few company-centric features added. For instance, there's an option to apply EMC's RSA authentication system, use some deployment tools and tap the company's 24/7 support and email alerts.

Mozy is an online backup service for desktops, laptops and remote Windows servers. Most customers are smaller businesses with around 500-1,000 employees. The notable exception is a contract with General Electric, although it uses Mozy to back up its PCs and laptops, not server data.

In the larger scheme of things, MozyEnterprise is the first SaaS offering using EMC's new infrastructure dubbed "Fortress." Slick name. Very durable sounding. But that's about all we've got to go on.

EMC is keeping the details of what exactly the platform consists of under wraps. Whether Fortress will expand to compete against larger-scope storage offerings such as Amazon's S3 remains to be seen.

MozyEnterprise for individual systems will cost $5.25 a month per machine, plus 70 cents per gigabyte protected. Windows-based servers pay $9.25 a month per machine and $2.35 a month per gigabyte protected.

You may have thought the world's leading storage vendor would beat the likes of an online book seller to providing online storage in a meaningful way. But old line giants can move with only so much speed, right?

You can grab davantage d'information on MozyEnterprise here. ®

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