Teneros appliance targeted at Exchange users

E-mail continuity vendor Teneros Monday added disaster recovery to its lineup of appliances for Microsoft Exchange.

The company introduced its Teneros Disaster Recovery Appliance for Microsoft Exchange at the annual Demo conference in San Diego. The appliance provides a failover for Exchange that lives on the WAN. The company has an identical product for the LAN called the Application Continuity Appliance. The appliance ensures that Exchange is available in the event of an outage. The Disaster Recovery Appliance lets users place their failover Exchange servers anywhere on the WAN.

"For Teneros at the very least they have some market differentiation with the appliance model," says Matt Cain, an analyst with Gartner. "It could lead to lower cost of operations and [total cost of ownership], but we don't know that yet." Teneros plans to ship the Disaster Recovery Appliance in the first quarter of next year with the target market being small and midsize companies that typically don't have major disaster recovery infrastructure in place.

But Cain said Teneros and other vendors such as CA, Neverfail and Double-Take will find competitive pressure from two new features included with Microsoft Exchange 2007 based on log shipping technology. Those features -- Clustered Continuous Replication (CCR) and Local Continuous Replication (LCR) -- are aimed at recoverability and higher availability. LCR replicates copies of Exchange databases on a local server, while CCR enables a cluster that does not require shared storage while replicating the database to a passive backup.

Teneros uses a similar passive node concept with the passive node holding a replicated copy of the Exchange data store. During a disaster, Exchange can failover to the Teneros appliance to provide uninterrupted access to Exchange. Once the Exchange server is back online Teneros restores e-mail sent and received during the outage.

The appliance uses technology developed by Teneros called Instant-On, which lets the appliance instantly take over e-mail duties from an Exchange server when problems are detected or an Exchange server fails. While the Exchange Server is healthy, the Disaster Recovery Appliance is continually replicating the contents of its mail store.

The appliance also handles updates to DNS and MX records so that mail can start flowing to the appliance.

"We have also added WAN optimization technology because when the appliance is in standby mode we are replicating over the WAN connection," says Teneros CEO Steve Lewis.

Also unique to the Teneros appliance is Transaction Integrity Validation, which is real-time data verification that ensures corrupt data in Exchange is not replicated to the appliance. To harden itself from failure, the Disaster Recovery Appliance has multiple independent CPUs, hot swappable power supplies and hard disks, and hardware RAID with redundant controllers.

Disaster Recovery Appliance also includes built-in Sophos antivirus and anti-intrusion technology to protect against worms, viruses, network-level attacks, identity spoofing and Trojans.

The Teneros Disaster Recovery Appliances is priced starting at US$20,000.

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