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September 2013

OIT Tech News

Crash Plan Pro—Automated Backup for SMU Managed Faculty and Staff Computers

OIT is now officially launching the new automated backup solution for managed Faculty and Staff computers.  Crash Plan Pro is a software application that can be installed on Windows, Macintosh, and Linux platforms. After the initial installation, the software performs a complete backup of the folder locations specified in the configuration. Once the initial backup is complete, the application will continuously backup changed files. All data is fully encrypted and secured in transit from your computer to the server storage in our data center. Best of all, the process is fully automated and requires no user intervention!

Your data is completely safe, secure, and accessible only by you.  When you need to recover data, there’s a quick and easy process to locate the folders or files that you need from the backup client. You can restore your files with just a few clicks. 

When CrashPlan Pro is first installed, you are prompted to authenticate with your SMU credentials. This ensures that only your ID and password can grant access to the data for that backup file.  The first backup process is a full backup of files stored in the common storage locations. You may continue using the computer during this backup with little performance impact. After that, the backup process occurs on a daily basis and takes only a few minutes. This process runs in the background and will not impact the performance of your computer.

This new application will be published to the LANDesk portal on a certain schedule to avoid overloading the network with the initial backup process.  The first big pilot group will begin on September 16 and include OIT, technical representatives from various departments, and the School of Education.  On September 23, we will begin targeting those machines that are scheduled for a new computer as this will shorten the overall installation process.  We’ll then add a new batch of computers each week throughout October and early November.  Because of resources involved in this service, it will only be available for full time Faculty and Staff and only on the designated primary machine.  It will not be published to secondary or shared workstations.  Communication will be sent once CrashPlan is available for installation in your department.