Founded in 2005, Dubai English Speaking College was established to meet the needs of parents who have moved to Dubai and require their children to continue a British secondary education from Year 7 up to Year 13. Based in Academic City in Dubai, the College currently has over 1,200 students ranging from the ages 11-18.
With technology firmly establishing its presence within the education sector, there are a number of rules and regulations a school is required to meet; particularly when it comes to storing confidential data.
The Dubai English Speaking College had previously used a number of 'off the shelf' online backup providers, but was struggling to find a dedicated backup solution that remained reliable and was efficient enough to meet the college's needs.
Gillian Parsons, Network Manager, comments, "In the past we have tried a number of generic backup solutions which have failed to meet our needs in the long term. We've had a number of problems when the various solutions were updated, becoming incompatible with our servers, meaning that backups weren't completed."
As well as struggling to find a backup provider to suit their needs, the Dubai English Speaking College found that the generic consumer backup providers were unable to backup the amount of data required. This is a significant challenge for an institution with over 1,200 students and an increasing amount of data which often needs to be backed up and restored.
"The backup process was a bit of a burden with some of our previous solutions," says Parsons. "Due to the volume of data, our provider was unable to complete the backup process all at once so we had to separate the data into various folders and run the backup for each folder. This was a time consuming process, but became necessary as it would have taken around 36 hours to complete in one go and meant we could only complete a full backup once a week."
To add to the college's challenges, the support from their backup provider was often slow and limited to email-based support. This meant that if a critical issue did arise then it would take a while to resolve.
Gillian says, "As we had experienced a few issues in the past with our previous solution, we had needed to contact the support team to help guide us through some difficulties with the software. However, the support often came in the form of a generic email checklist and seldom went beyond this. We realised that we needed to opt for a more reliable solution that could accommodate our needs and provide more support."
Gillian began looking for a new data backup provider and started researching online for dedicated solutions with a significant presence within the education sector and providers who shared the same priorities as the college itself.
"We had a little more budget to invest in a dedicated provider", Gillian explains. "I looked online and came across Redstor and after reading reviews and forums of the service, it seemed like a good fit for the college. Having such a strong presence within education was a particular draw as it meant they understood our particular needs."
In February 2015, Dubai English Speaking College rolled out Redstor's RBUSS solution to backup over 2.8TB of critical data.
"The installation process was seamless and straightforward but even when we did have an issue, the support team from Redstor were very helpful and quick to respond to any problems that did arise."
Since implementing RBUSS, the college has seen a significant improvement with their data backup. Gillian no longer needs to separate the data into individual folders and can now do a complete backup all at once; saving valuable time.
Gillian comments, "In the past we have only been able to complete a full backup once a week due to the volume of data and the need to put everything into separate folders. Using Redstor we are able to do a complete backup every night which gives me much more peace of mind that the critical data is being backed up."
Due to the intuitiveness of the service, it only seeks out data that has been changed to minimise the time taken during the backup process which considerably reduces time spent backing up data unnecessarily.
"With our previous solution it would have taken 36 hours to complete a full backup but we have found that Redstor is much more efficient and, depending on the volume of data, backups can be complete in between 90 minutes and just a few hours."
Parson adds, "As with the nature of the college, files do go missing or get deleted but we have found the restore process to be very smooth and painless. Luckily we have only had to restore a few individual files and folders but if we do have to restore a larger volume of data we know Redstor can handle this."