AppAssure's Replay 4 Backup Software Helps Nationwide Company Reduce Downtime from Five Days to 20 Minutes

Replay 4's robust disaster recovery capabilities helped Brundage Bone to back up server in 20 minutes with very little staff work interruption.

AppAssure Software (, a provider of innovative backup and disaster recovery software for Windows Applications Servers, today announced that Brundage Bone Concrete Pumping, the largest concrete pumping company in the United States, reduced downtime from five days to 20 minutes after replacing Backup Exec with AppAssure's flagship backup & recovery product, Replay 4, at a fraction of the cost.

With offices in over 18 states and with major projects such as pumping concrete for Denver International Airport and countless bridges, skyscrapers, and even a shark tank, at any one time there are 40+ sites at which Brundage Bone has its pump trucks, its equipment, and its crews. As large as its concrete pouring jobs are, Brundage Bone nevertheless depends on a relatively small IT team with complicated infrastructure to keep its scheduling, accounting, payroll, and other applications running smoothly.

"Our pouring jobs can be in any of our locations at any one time," says Herb Thornton, Network Administrator for Brundage Bone. "The right pump has to be sent out for the right job with the right amount of labor. If we don't show up for a job because the server that hosts our scheduling application has failed or the data is lost somehow, there won't be a second chance."

Thornton knew that without a solid IT infrastructure, Brundage Bone was looking at a potential catastrophe. "All our locations were running Symantec Backup Exec and were backing up to tape," notes Thornton. "The existing tape drives did not have the capacity to back up the whole server, just the critical files. This enabled us to keep a nightly backup of our dispatching software, database, and other critical office documents, but there was no way to get at them unless the server was functional and operational. Although extremely slow, it did give us the ability to recover files from tape, but not any part of the server operating system. So my biggest fears have been that I would not be able to get a failed server at one of my branch locations up and running in a timely manner, or at all."

It tends to be rare for an IT expert to have the exact production server failure scenario take place with two different backup solutions used in each instance for an "apples to apples" comparison, but Thornton was one of the "lucky" few who had a front-row seat for two exact server failures at Brundage Bone: one before AppAssure's Replay 4, and one using Replay 4's backup and disaster recovery solution.

"My predecessor had a server fail at one of our remote locations while we were using Backup Exec," explains Thornton. "It involved him purchasing a new server, flying to that location and reinstalling everything from scratch and then performing the file backup from tape. That branch did not have access to the dispatching software for about five days. They ended up doing everything on paper during that time period, including the cash logs and work orders."

That was the nightmare scenario that kept Thornton up at night when he took over IT.

"A month after I had purchased Replay," says Thornton, "I ran into the same scenario as above. A server quit and refused to start up at one of my remote locations. I was able to take the latest snapshot and fire up a virtualized image of the server. I had the employees remote into their virtualized server and had them back up and dispatching within 20 minutes. I then concentrated on doing a bare metal restore on another server. I was able to get the server restored to a different unit, test it and get it shipped to the location by the next day. They simply plugged the replacement server in at their location, I pushed the updated changes data back to the replacement server from the virtualized server and it was business as usual. I was able to do this without flying out and had no downtime."

While Replay quickly became Brundage Bone's backup and disaster recovery solution of choice, Thornton also found himself impressed by Replay's dedupe and compression features.

"I did an estimate of the amount of storage I would need when I purchased an NAS server to handle the snapshots," explains Thornton, "and I was estimating that I would need a minimum of 3 TB to handle all the snapshots before they were compressed. I have been running Replay on the new NAS server for four months now and I have yet to exceed 1 TB of storage space. If you look at the local storage summary on the Replay console, it's showing that I am only using 20% of the storage space, post-compression. That's amazing!"

To download a free 14-day Replay 4 trial, visit


Tags: backup, backup and recovery, backup software, bare metal restore, data backup, data deduplication, data recovery, disaster recovery

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Steven Toole
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