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Laptop Back-Up Made Painless

1 Nov, 2001 By: Virginia Renz Higgins imageSource

Laptop Back-Up Made Painless


office equipment dealers immerse themselves more deeply into the digital world,
many have found that laptop computers have become essential tools of the trade
whether sales or service personnel use it. With more dealer personnel tied to
laptops as never before, as in the wake of easy connectivity and Internet
access, they have evolved from single or dual use devices into powerful
communications centers. As such, dealers are storing more and more essential
information on these systems, in a variety of formats. 


in spite of increased reliance on these devices, there can be heard a collective
wince whenever the subject of laptop back-up is mentioned in a meeting, for few
computer users, no matter what their profession, perform such a necessary task
with any regularity, if at all. Meanwhile, other well-intentioned notebook users
who have juggled with JAZ or Zip drives have been left wanting. However, a new
product called the ABSplus from a
small company called CMS Peripherals offers the painless back-up most laptop
users have been waiting for, as well provides them with a way to expand the
storage of an existing, yet memory-shy PC. 


CMS Peripherals

Peripherals was founded in 1983 with the goal to develop easy-to-use products to
handle the task of high-performance mass storage. Today, CMS designs,
manufactures, and develops a broad line of products for servers, workstations,
and portable computers.


offers these solutions in the U.S. to Fortune 500 Companies, Government
Agencies, and Educational Institutions through a channel of distributors and
corporate resellers. Currently, its largest distributor is Ingram Micro, who
generates twice the revenue of its second-largest partner, Tech Data. CMS also
has a reseller channel, with DellWare, CDW, and Insight ranked in order of
descending sales. CMS estimates that channel sales constitute about 50% of its
domestic revenue. The third tier in its distribution involves forming strategic
alliances with industry leaders to integrate CMS technology in their own product
lines. CMS also taps the international markets through various international


CMS calls itself “the recognized leader in mass storage products including
backup products for notebooks, notebook hard drive upgrades, data transfer kits
and desktop hard drives.” In the past 17 years CMS has installed more than
three million storage products in 90 different countries.




offers a variety of storage products for notebook and desktop users. Products


& Forget Drive:
  a credit card-sized PCMCIA Type II drive that holds 2GB of
data storage. It includes automatic launcher software and is compatible with
Windows 98/ME/2000/NT.

Bundle Data Transfer Kit:

is a PCMCIA data transfer cable for transferring data from an old drive to a new
drive. It is compatible with Windows 95/98/Me/2000/NT.

Easy-Go Hard Drives:

are fully configured and tested drive upgrades in all capacities for DOS,
Windows, MacOs, and Linux.

ABSplus: an
automatic back-up system for notebook users, and uses a PCMCIA Interface.
Compatible with Windows 95 and up, the system comes with an automatic launcher, that scans the source drive and copies all
files which are new or have been modified since the last backup. A USB version
is available for both notebooks and desktops. Available in 6, 10, 20, and 30GB
capacities, this device has been designed to provide extra shock protection for
rugged environments.


a user standpoint, there is a lot to like about this 7 oz. product. First of
all, when the ABS formats and partitions the enclosed drive, it includes all
boot sector information. Each time the unit is inserted in the PCMCIA slot, the
backup launches automatically, scanning the hard drive and copying only those
files that have been changed or newly created since the last back-up was
performed (it has a data transfer rate of 75MB per minute. The USB version
offers 1.5 MB per second performance with hot swap capability). It stores data
in its native file format, and files and applications can be run directly from
the ABSplus. 


the “automatic launcher” software, which remains resident on the laptop,
offers both “express” and “custom” options, enabling users to direct the
ABS's back-up efforts in a specific or global direction.


Bottom Line

are plenty of scary statistics out there about hard drive failure to motivate us
to address this loophole, but transient and remote workers, such as office
equipment sales and service personnel have specific needs, which many data
storage solutions do not address. First and foremost, many need back-up that is
quick, portable, and easy to use. The ABSplus
fits the bill far better than many of the alternatives, and does so at a
price point that is easy to digest (MSRP$329, street price $250-280). 


fact that all data is stored on the ABSplus
with the directory structure the user has set up is extremely helpful in the
event of laptop failure and subsequent restoration, which may occur more
frequently with laptops that belong to “road warriors.” Add to that the fact
that routine back-ups are simple and automatic, and the ABSplus
looks like a worthy addition to any dealer salesperson’s or service
technician’s remote or mobile office.







Ventures is a strategic consulting firm for providers and users of digital
business communication technologies and services. CAP Ventures provide knowledge
and business strategies through timely research, analysis, forecasting,
benchmarking, counsel, market education and implementation. For more information
on CAP Ventures, visit www.capv.com.

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