State of Ohio (MCOECN)

State of Ohio breaks ground by managing education systems’ data state-wide

The Challenge:

Officials in the state of Ohio were trying to manage the storage needs of more than 725 school districts across the state. Each facility had varying needs, storage capabilities and operating systems.

Maintaining proper disaster recovery assurance was a challenge not easily met. Consolidating storage among the various installations seemed impossible.

In Ohio, a network of 23 Information Technology Centers (ITC’s) represents the 725 school districts, as well as Educational Service Centers, community schools and approximately 1.3 million students.

The main responsibility of the ITC’s is to provide services to all the school districts across the state.

The Solution:

The Management Council of the Ohio Education Computer Network (MCOECN), which oversees the 23 ITC’s, decided to standardize systems and processes used by the state’s school districts. Linking the storage device to a disaster recovery site was crucial.

Following some rigorous due diligence, the MCOECN purchased a STORServer Enterprise Backup Appliance (EBA) for local disk-to-disk and disk-to-tape backup and archiving.

“The decision to standardize with the STORServer solution was based primarily on its ease of use and installation,” said Duane Baker, chief operating officer of the technology solutions group of the Ohio Education Computer Network. “STORServer can also handle 100 percent of the operating system environments the ITC’s deal with, including Windows OS, Microsoft, and Red Hat Linux.”

The EBA’s platform-neutral, policy-based methodology manages backup, archive, and disaster recovery across the enterprise, safeguarding data for more than 725 school districts and 1.3 million students. “A state-wide implementation of a storage appliance has been unheard of until now and we’re really excited to be working with STORServer,” said Baker.

The EBA’s hierarchical tier structure allows local archiving to be copied to an off-site location for assured data recovery in the event of a disaster at the local site.

“There have been a handful of nearly disastrous encounters, including fires and power outages, that made us realize the installation of a data backup and recovery solution was absolutely necessary,” said Baker. “With STORServer, I finally have the peace of mind that in the case of data loss due to another disaster, the ITC’s will have no trouble recovering their data.”


The STORServer Enterprise Backup Appliance at MCOECN performs backups for 600 school servers and sends them to two additional STORServer Backup Appliances at the disaster recovery site every night.

“No other state is currently doing what Ohio and STORServer are doing together,” said Baker. “A state-wide implementation of a storage appliance has been unheard of until now and we’re really excited to be working with STORServer.”

Download State of Ohio MCOECN Case Study