You’re no doubt aware of the extreme flooding that has been occurring throughout Queensland and now encroaching upon Brisbane CBD.

Our own car park in downtown Brisbane is under water…

clip_image001

Microsoft is already helping through government infrastructure support, temporary software licenses/online services access, and facilitating donations & volunteering. But I wanted to do more.

Yesterday at lunchtime I shared an idea about a way I had thought of to actually help some of the businesses affected by these floods.  I know when I had my business, I didn’t have the data redundancies in place to cope with something of this magnitude. My idea was that hopefully we could use the infrastructure that Microsoft has available to help prevent this for some of the businesses effected by the floods.

Since then people have been running around like crazy to see if we could put something together to actually do this. Big thanks to Larry Gregory who was instrumental in making this possible.

So now we’ve set it up, we’re hoping to enlist your support is in helping small/medium businesses back up their data (server loss could be catastrophic for a small business). 

We’re proposing a very simple approach: backing up files to a local virtual hard disk and uploading those files into Windows Azure storage.  This is not designed to provide application-level services and is only meant to be short term storage (accounts expire in 30 days).  However, it could provide the data backup solution your customers need in this time of crisis.  Note: the Azure accounts we’ve secured carry no guaranteed SLA or data liability (and you’re not permitted to charge for these Azure account resources).

The additional info you need is an Azure ID (username & password) for each customer you intend to help (IDs mustn’t be shared across customers).  You can receive these Azure IDs by emailing BNEFlood@Live.com with the names of the organizations you’re looking to assist.

We will then send to you step by step backup & upload instructions on how to use this service to help. also included below are important conditions for using the service. 

Important Conditions for Using the Service

Customer data must be kept separate.  Use one username per customer and never use the same username for another customer.  You must give the username/password information to the customer, for them to retain.  Customers must be above 13 years of age to receive a Live ID. 

This Windows Live ID is a test account intended for temporary use while testing the Windows Azure platform.  You should not use this test account with any services other than the Windows Azure platform services (Windows Azure, SQL Azure or Windows Azure Platform AppFabric). Microsoft may deactivate this test account, your access to it, or any services connected with it at any time. In such instances all content and contacts in the account will be permanently deleted. By using this test account you/your customer agrees to the following terms of use and privacy statements:

Windows Live ID Terms of Use: http://explore.live.com/microsoft-service-agreement?ref=none

Microsoft Online Service Agreement: https://mocp.microsoftonline.com/Site/Mocp_Eagreement.aspx?country=USA&lang=en

Microsoft Online Privacy Statement: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=74170

Windows Azure Platform Privacy Statement: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=154099

If you do not agree to these terms, do not use this service.