PresSTORE 3 Review
PresSTORE is an industrial strength backup and archiving tool. Competing in a market with lots of big-name rivals, PresSTORE 3 has a very persuasive selling point; it’s cross platform. Running as a server component and configurable in any web browser on your network, there are versions for Windows and UNIX-based platforms as well as for the Mac.
Considering its target audience of system administrators, PresSTORE 3 is forgiving at all stages of installation and configuration. It installs as a server process, but is accessible immediately without a reboot. At least, that was the case on our test bed. Users can log in with their Mac’s default username and begin configuring backups immediately using tools that can detect or manually configure attached volumes.
The interface takes a minute to work out, as the menu bar is context sensitive. In the Backup manager section, for example, the File menu has commands that enable you to create or duplicate backup plans. In the Device section, you can add new devices in the same menu. Speaking of backup devices, there’s support for a comprehensive range of storage types, though licensing restricts how many media drives you can target.
With network access to configuration tools a selling point of the package, security is important. The company emphasises the tool’s strong security features – described as end-to-end encryption. Though virtually invisible to administrators, data can be encrypted both at source and during transmission over the network, ensuring that the only people who see your data are the folks who are authorised to. This is essential when you consider that PresSTORE is capable of continually backing up data.
This brings us to our only reservation with the software, the licensing structure. The version we tried had everything enabled – archiving, backup and synchronisation – but in the real world there are seven different licences. Then there are further expansion licences for adding media drives (default support is for one drive at entry level), servers and workstations. PresSTORE is a robust, comprehensive data-protection solution, but it could end up being a pricey one.
An efficient backup tool that’s highly configurable and benefits from solid documentation. It’s of most benefit to small to medium sized companies dealing with mission critical data day to day where the value of consistent backups will offset the considerable cost.