The new service follows an early study commissioned by 16 Ontario universities, which suggested colleges and universities could achieve significant efficiencies by establishing a shared, secure online data storage service over ORION

Supports Green Technology Solutions

TORONTO – May 28, 2010 – / – The Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION) is launching Canada’s first backup storage service dedicated exclusively to research and education institutions.

The new service, being launched at the Ontario Universities Computing Conference at the University of Ottawa May 31, is expected to bring significant benefits and efficiencies to universities, colleges and other research and education facilities across Ontario.

“This is very significant to Ontario’s postsecondary institutions and research-intensive facilities, because it allows them to use ORION to backup and store multiple terabytes of critical data in a robust and highly secure environment,” says ORION President and CEO, Phil Baker. “The resulting benefits and efficiencies will be quite substantial,” he said.

Offered in partnership with Toronto-based Storagepipe Solutions Inc. the ORION Backup Storage Service has already been tested in some of Ontario’s top universities and is now available to all ORION institutions, including colleges, school boards, teaching hospitals and research facilities across the province.

The new service recently wrapped up a successful testing stage involving Queen’s and York Universities, evaluating off-site backup storage in typical production conditions.

“We expect this will be one of ORION’s most valuable services,” says ORION Technology Innovation Leader, Blair Brenot, who helped develop the service in consultation with ORION user institutions. “It makes a lot sense for institutions to leverage ORION’s capabilities, where speed and the ability to store and retrieve very large and critical data is absolutely vital,” he says.

The burden of managing backup storage represents a significant resource and operational pressure for many research and education institutions. The amount of data now being created, shared and stored at postsecondary and other institutions is growing exponentially, driven by increasing dependence on digital documentation and multimedia files for learning and research in all disciplines.

“CIOs and IT managers are under pressure to support more productive deployment of available resources. Core IT activities such as data backup and storage account for an increasingly disproportionate share of these scarce resources which can be applied to other priorities,” says Brenot.

Access to a shared service also introduces a green information technology solution, by reducing an institution’s need to maintain costly and less efficient storage facilities.

The new service follows an early study commissioned by 16 Ontario universities, which suggested colleges and universities could achieve significant efficiencies by establishing a shared, secure online data storage service over ORION.

For more information on the new service, visit

The Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION) is Ontario’s ultra high-speed research and education network. It links 1.7 million Ontario researchers, scientists, students, teachers and staff who depend on ORION for teaching and learning and to enable their research collaborations and discoveries in physics, cancer research, environmental science and technologies, social sciences and the humanities and multiple other disciplines. ORION links users and institutions to each other, and through CANARIE – Canada’s advanced research and innovation network – to high-capacity research and education networks, partners and collaborators across Canada and around the world. Visit

Media Contacts:
Andre Quenneville
Director, Communications
416-507-9860 ext. 226

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