Top Midwest University Discovers Benefits of Cloud-Replicated Backup

Washburn University Chooses Barracuda for Cloud Replication, Fast Recovery, Cost Savings

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  • Based in Topeka, KS, USA
  • 7,500+ students, 650+ faculty, and 1,100+ employees
  • Founded in 1865


  • Outdated tape-based backup solution was vulnerable to disaster
  • Managing tape-based backup consumed scarce IT staff time and resources
  • Second campus was too close for secure redundant backup


  • Barracuda Backup with Barracuda Cloud replication


  • Achieved secure, redundant backup
  • Had significant cost savings over other potential solutions
  • Significantly reduced IT administrative and management workload
  • LiveBoot provides immediate relaunch of cloud server instances for fast disaster recovery

A New Solution

Jim Tagliareni joined Washburn University as Chief Information Officer in January 2017—and he knew right away that upgrading the school’s backup solution would be among the first things he had to accomplish. The existing system was a tape-based backup product. The tapes were updated at the end of each day, and the tapes were stored in the same building as the university’s data center.

Tagliareni knew that this was far from ideal. In 1966, the Washburn campus was devastated by a tornado, and he was concerned that if a similar disaster came again, the data center and backup tapes could easily be destroyed together.

In his previous job at another college, keeping redundant, off-site copies of backups had been a high priority. “In that position, I shopped around and did my research,” says Tagliareni. “I was ready to go ahead and buy a redundant tape system. But I got a call from a Barracuda rep right about then. Long story short, I ended up purchasing Barracuda Backup.”

Despite his earlier decision to use Barracuda Backup, at Washburn Tagliareni made sure to perform due diligence before selecting a new backup solution, evaluating a number of possibilities. One particularly intriguing idea he explored was to trade rack space with another university in a different region—effectively acting as each other’s backup replication. “Mutual backup with another college was less costly than the co-location facilities I had looked at,” says Tagliareni. “But then I spoke to Barracuda, and their offer was too good to pass up.”

Barracuda Backup Benefits

Barracuda Backup met all Tagliareni’s requirements—and the cost was considerably lower than the inter-college rack-trading arrangement he had been considering.

Besides the low cost, Tagliareni was especially impressed with the benefits of replicating his backedup data to the Barracuda Cloud. First of all, Barracuda offered unlimited storage, making it easy for Washburn to keep seven years’ worth of data, which exceeds all legal and regulatory requirements. Also, with Barracuda Backup, they didn’t need to enlarge their data center, saving both cost and hassle.

Recovery speed was also a major concern for Tagliareni. He says, “One of the best things about Barracuda’s cloud replication is that all our servers are replicated completely. So in a disaster, we can re-launch virtual servers in the cloud and be back up and running in a matter of minutes. That means there’s no mad scramble to replace failed hardware and restore data and applications. That’s a huge benefit that really sets the Barracuda solution apart.”

"In a disaster, we can re-launch virtual servers in the cloud and be back up and running in a matter of minutes. That’s a huge benefit that really sets the Barracuda solution apart."
- James Tagliareni, Chief Information Officer, Washburn University

Speedy Setup

According to Tagliareni, “fast deployment and ease of use are the beautiful part of Barracuda. It was just a few days from purchase to actively backing up data. The user interface is just so simple and intuitive—Barracuda is sort of the Apple of backup solutions."

"It was just a few days from purchase to actively backing up data. The user interface is just so simple and intuitive—Barracuda is sort of the Apple of backup solutions."
- James Tagliareni, Chief Information Officer, Washburn University


Thanks to Jim Tagliareni and Barracuda, Washburn University is now protected against data loss— everything is securely stored both onsite in the virtual Backup appliance, and redundantly in the Barracuda Cloud. Even if a major natural disaster impacts both of Washburn’s campuses (they’re only four miles apart), Tagliareni can re-launch cloud server instances and get the University’s critical systems back on-line right away.

What’s more, the university saved considerable money by choosing Barracuda Backup. As Tagliareni puts it, “Barracuda Backup is not only the best backup solution out there. It’s also the most affordable.”

In fact, Tagliareni was so impressed with the benefits of cloud-based backup replication with Barracuda that he published an article about it on LinkedIn. (You can read it here: pulse/5-reasons-why-cloud-based-disaster-recovery-smart-tagliareni-cgcio)

Tagliareni puts it best, when he says, “In two consecutive roles at two different colleges, I twice went through a thorough evaluation of potential backup solutions. And both times, I ended up choosing Barracuda Backup. I think that really tells you all you need to know.”

Über Barracuda

Protecting users, applications, and data for more than 150,000 organisations worldwide, Barracuda Networks has developed a global reputation as the go-to leader for powerful, easy-to-use, affordable IT solutions. The company’s proven customer-centric business model focuses on delivering highvalue, subscription-based IT solutions for security and storage. For additional information, please visit or follow us on Twitter@barracudaEMEA.

About Barracuda Backup

Barracuda delivers easy cloud-connected Backup. Barracuda Backup is the unified, cost-efficient data protection solution for your physical and virtual environments. Backup software, local storage, and remote storage are integrated into a solution that can be rapidly deployed in under an hour. Cloud-based central management enables seamless multisite administration, and rapid local or remote recovery prevents data loss, and also minimizes downtime. Barracuda Backup is a complete backup solution with remote storage that is easy to buy, install, and manage, all backed by our live 24/7 customer support experts.

Barracuda Backup Fast Facts

  • Secures physical and virtual environments (VMware & Hyper-V)
  • LiveBoot for VMware
  • Deduplicated storage and fast replication
  • Microsoft SQL, Exchange, Restore at the News Level
  • VMware Snapshot and File Recovery
  • Cloud Storage and/or Siteto-Site-Replication