Vembu Technologies has made available for production StoreGrid Cloud AMI, an online backup "virtual appliance" on Amazon Web Services.

The company says that with the StoreGrid Cloud AMI and the Amazon Web Services infrastructure, it is now possible for service providers to offer a scalable, secure and highly redundant online backup service to their small and medium business (SMB) customers without any upfront capital investment in a data center.

Online backup service providers can now configure the StoreGrid Cloud AMI virtual appliance to run as a backup server in the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2).

StoreGrid Cloud AMI will use the Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) to store backup data from client machines at remote locations.

The StoreGrid Cloud AMI virtual appliance also leverages Amazon Elastic Block Store (Amazon EBS) to store meta-data information in the MySQL relational database.

Steve Rabuchin, director of Developer Relations and Business Development for Amazon Web Services, said AWS is designed to help alleviate for its customers, the cost and effort associated with building, operating and scaling technology infrastructure.

"We are pleased that the StoreGrid Cloud AMI is able to leverage Amazon Web Services to extend this service to their customers," he said.

Even service providers who want to keep backup data in their own data centers can use the StoreGrid Cloud AMI virtual appliance as a replication server. This deployment would enable them to replicate the backup data into the Amazon S3 storage cloud, thus offering more redundancy to the data.

Sekar Vembu, CEO, Vembu Technologies

Sekar Vembu, CEO, Vembu Technologies, said that investing, managing and scaling server and storage infrastructure is one of the most complex tasks for any online backup service provider.

"StoreGrid Cloud AMI for Amazon Web Services eliminates this complexity by virtualizing the computing and storage infrastructure in a cloud," he said.

Vembu released the Beta version of StoreGrid Cloud AMI in December 2008, and since then more than 50 service providers have been testing it.

This production release incorporates feedback from these Beta partners, including the enhancement to use Amazon EBS as a temporary cache before uploading backup data to Amazon S3.

StoreGrid Cloud AMI is available for purchase now and is priced as an annual subscription per StoreGrid backup client, with USD $30 for desktops and USD $60 for servers.

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