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Sabio Digital has souped up its CM4 network-attached storage device with a new operating system that enables automated backup and data recovery protection at a price point that is comfortable for small to midsize businesses.

The upgrade comes a year after Sabio released the flagship product with RAID 5 onboard, designed for SMB NAS. The new version adds FalconStor Software’s DiskSafe Express software and starts at a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $849 with a range of 1TB to 2TB of capacity.

“When we originally launched the product, we were targeting shared storage,” said Ajay Gupta. “Then we realized that users were looking for a more robust backup solution.”

FalconStor’s Linux operating system and backup software has been a staple in many higher-end storage solutions, but this is the first time the software has been available in a product accessible to SMBs, Gupta said.

The new software enables both a block-level backup and a file-level backup, allowing users to recover full hard drives in addition to single files. The previous software only offered file-level backup.

“Most corporations have a robust backup strategy, but a lot of small businesses and regional offices don’t really have a good solid strategy,” Gupta said. “This does automatic backup without any user intervention. And it’s easier to recover from a failure than it is with other products.”

Kano Technologies, a storage solution manufacturer that caters to the high end of the storage market with its custom-made storage solutions, was looking for another vendor to partner with to provide a device that could meet customer requests for a lower-priced solution, according to Richard Young, president of the company and a former executive with the storage divisions of Hitachi and JVC.

Young’s company tested a handful of devices for performance, looking to balance that with price in the solution it would ultimately offer to its customers. The Sabio device offered the right balance and also provided a strong automated backup solution that could be customized in terms of look and feel.

“The people buying this NAS are not IT people,” Young said. “The majority of these people are average skilled PC users so this has to be easily supported. It really needs to be plug-and-play.”

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Young found the device ideal for general data and standard video applications. However, high-density video applications would require a higher-end solution, he said.

The devices now come bundled with FalconStor’s DiskSafe Express, which features scheduled backups that can be scheduled on a weekly or daily basis. After initial backup of all the data, subsequent backups capture only the changes. FalconStor’s complete DiskSafe software is available for an additional fee and can take as many as 64 snapshots of data per day.

Sabio will ship the device to VARs with or without hard drives already installed. Most VARs choose to install their own hard drives, Gupta said. In addition, VARs can re-badge the device with their own brand.