A Canadian reseller sees sales opportunities opening up with the release by Centurion Technologies of a new hard drive protection solution.

“We believe we now have an arena of new customers,” Jay Lakhani, sales director for Codework Inc. in Mississauga, Ont., said of Centurion’s CompuGuard Cornerstone

application.

Cornerstone is client-based software installed on PCs, which builds on the St. Louis, Mo.’s company’s Instant Restore technology found in products such as DriveShield.

DriveShield, which Codework sells to the education and corporate markets, prevents hard drive configurations from being changed by users.

Cornerstone adds remote management and automatic update features, unattended installation as well as the ability to prevent the connection of USB devices. Instant Restore can also be enabled or disabled for any partition.

“We are marketing Cornerstone to customers who may have resisted trying out DriveShield because it didn’t give remote install and other features,” said Lakhani.

For example, he said an administrator can configure Cornerstone desktops to be upgraded with new software at midnight. PCs protected with DriveShield have to be changed individually.

The market can be sizable for Codework, a British-owned solution provider with offices here and in the U.S. Lakhani estimates the Canadian division, which has a staff of 12 and a Quebec office, sold 10,000 DriveShieldlicences last year.

Cornerstone “will appeal to many more new customers,” he predicted.

According to Tim Derstine, Centurion’s manager of business development, Cornerstone is the first of the company’s CompuGuard line. It also includes a server-based administration application called CompuGuard Control Centre.

With the improved management features the CompuGuard lines allows the company to bring its reboot-restore technology to the enterprise market, he said.

“It will allow resellers to go after more lucrative contracts and clients that we were not able to.”

At the same time it launched the new line Centurion is also embarking on an expansion of its channel. Until now it quietly signed up resellers through word of mouth. However, the company is in the final stages of signing a distribution agreement with Ingram Micro.

However, Centurion will continue to sign up VARs directly, he said. There won’t be a price advantage to doing so, but those that do will see better support.

The company discounts 15 to 30 per cent off the suggested list price to VARs depending on the annual sales.

With only two Canadian VARs (the other is Horizon DataSys Inc. of Vancouver.), Derstine said he is also looking to add more resellers in this country.

“I don’t believe two resellers will be able to handle the amount of business there,” he said.

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