Information Technology Services (ITS)


UTORrecover is the professionally managed backup solution provided by Information Technology Services. It’s available to any University of Toronto department or faculty.

Other than the requirement that the client system be on the University’s network, there are virtually no restrictions on the type of hardware, operating system or total amount of data to be backed up.

Protect your valuable data

Backing up centrally makes sense:

Easy – Once the UTORrecover client software is installed on your server and a backup time selected, the rest is completely automated. You’ll never have to worry about managing backup tapes again.

Reliable – The UTORrecover Institutional Backup Service is a managed service with dedicated support staff and 24/7 monitoring to assist you with any problems and ensure reliable operation of the equipment and software.

Lower cost – There is no costly equipment or server software to purchase, manage or maintain.

Offsite protection – Backups are done remotely, across the University’s backbone network. This means that your backup data is stored in a different physical location from your server. Having your data backed up offsite ensures that your valuable information is protected from any local environmental disasters such as fires, floods and theft.

Growth protection – As your backup requirements grow, the service automatically expands to accommodate your additional data — you’ll never run out of tape in the middle of the night!

Technology – You can take advantage of the latest state-of-the-art technology, fully tested and expertly configured.

Helps you recover data following a ransomware attack – Backing up your data regularly to backup media that are not directly attached to your server(s) is an important part of your overall data protection practices and can increase your chances of recovering data following a ransomware attack. ITS’ Information Security group has curated some very useful information on the risks of ransomware and they include guidance on how to make your backups more resilient to ransomware.

UTORrecover features

Feature Details
Frequency of backups Daily – Backups are scheduled to run between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m. nightly. Full backups are done once per month with incremental thereafter. Other schedules are available. Please contact us for additional information.
Standard backup retention period 30 days – Optional 60 day, 90 day, 180 day and other schedules, including extended archival storage, are available. Please contact us for additional information.
Operating systems supported Windows, Solaris, Linux, Netware, MacOS X and many others. Please contact us for specific OS versions that are supported.
File / directory / partition / disk level backups and restores Yes
Length of time to restore a single file Less than 2 minutes (typical). Dedicated resources can be made available for disaster recovery.
Local administrators can initiate recoveries Yes
Client interfaces available GUI – Windows, Solaris; CLI – Windows, Linux, Solaris, MacOS X
Ability to backup multiple systems and multiple disks on a single system in parallel Yes – Parallel backups decrease the overall time required to complete a backup.
Raw file-systems supported Yes – Typically used by database applications.
Sparse file-systems supported Yes – Typically used by database applications.
Pre/post command execution supported Yes – Useful for shutting down then restarting an application during the backup cycle.
Ability to include or exclude disks/partitions/ directories/files Yes – Backup only what needs to be protected.
“Hot” backups of databases such as Oracle and Exchange supported? (Note: this feature may require an extra cost software module) Yes – Automated application management.
Encryption Data is not encrypted through the backup process. If your business requirement demands it, data should be encrypted at the source prior to being backed up.
Testing & recovery It is the client’s responsibility to regularly test their backups to ensure data integrity.

UTORrecover terms & conditions

Learn more about the terms & conditions.

How we calculate the cost

UTORrecover is a cost recovery service. Charges for this service consist of two components: an annual client license fee and an annual charge based on the average amount of data your backups consume.

The graph below is an example of a server protected by UTORrecover with the standard 30-day backup retention period.  Monthly full backups are made on the 1st of every month and daily incremental backups are made on other days. To keep the example simple, we have not accounted for any growth in the size of the data being protected, the server always has 100 GB of data to be protected, a churn rate of 10% has been assumed, and the first backup is performed on the first day of the annual billing cycle (May 1).

Example graph of a server protected by UTORrecover

The blue line shows the size of the daily backups, with the spikes representing the monthly full backups.

The red line shows the total amount of storage required to hold the backup sessions that have been created and must be retained.  The saw-tooth pattern is typical. The space required increases with each backup made until a collection of backups expires, approximately every 30 days, at which point the space occupied drops dramatically. The variations in the saw-tooth pattern are the result of the differing number of days in each month.

The green line shows a rolling 30-day average of the space consumed on the backup server. Space is billed based on the average space occupied over the billing period (typically 1 year), but the 30-day average serves to illustrate the difference between peak storage requirements and the billed average.

After the first 90 days of backups have been completed, the 30-day rolling average does not vary much and the familiar saw-tooth pattern of the space occupied has been established.

You are billed for the average amount of storage space your backups consume over the course of the year of the backup. This cost is significantly less than if you purchased and managed your own backup solution.

You also get 24/7 monitoring, daily reports and professional support to help resolve any problems you may encounter.

How much will it cost?

You can estimate the cost of backing up your server(s) by using the cost estimator tool. Enter the number of servers and the total amount of storage you want backed up. You will receive a pricing estimate via email.