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What you need to know about data backup in Elk Grove
Data backups aren’t exactly the most glamorous part of IT-ops but they are certainly one of the most important. You not only need to ensure that your data is protected, you need to keep the law in mind at all times while you do so. Here is a quick guide to what you need to know about data backup in Elk Grove.
A data backup is a snapshot of your data at any given point in time
A data backup just reflects the state of your data at any given point in time. This may sound like stating the obvious but it actually has several important implications.
Firstly, you need to make sure that any necessary organization happens before the data is backed up. Alternatively, you just need to accept the fact that your backups will be as disorganized as your production data and that this will probably end up costing you both money and time.
Secondly, you can run into trouble (and certainly incur excess costs) if you use data backups in place of a proper data archiving strategy. Data backups hold all your data and it’s up to the human users to know what they need and where to find it. Data archives hold specific files that are needed for specific purposes. Archived files are unlikely to be needed quickly but there is usually a time limit regarding how long you can take to retrieve them.
Last but definitely not least, a data backup in and of itself is not a disaster-recovery solution. A disaster-recovery solution has data plus everything needed to work with it. This typically means that, as a minimum, you will also need an operating system and applications.
You need to backup all active data but not all the time
All active data means all data which is actually being used. Anything else should be archived or deleted. If you’re not confident about deleting data, then keeping it in archive is a good compromise, although it’s advisable to put a time limit on this, otherwise, you will reduce the cost of storing unnecessary data but not eliminate it.
Once you have identified what data needs to be backed up, you need to determine a strategy for balancing thoroughness with cost (and time). For most SMBs taking full data backups all the time is just a lot more hassle than it’s worth. The astute move is to intersperse full data backups with incremental data backups (which only backup data which has changed since the last backup) and/or differential backups (which only backup data which has changed since the last full backup).
The choice between incremental and differential backups essentially boils down to whether you want to save resources when you perform the backup or keep your life simple if you need to restore. Incremental backups are easier to perform, but it can be a pain to restore from them. Differential backups typically generate more data and hence require more resources to perform, but restoring from them can be much easier.
You can backup sensitive data from a private cloud to a public one
If you’re already working in the public cloud then backing up your data to an alternative public cloud is usually the most cost-effective and straightforward way of combining two essential functions into one, namely data backups and disaster recovery.
If, however, you’re working in a private cloud, then the situation is a little more complicated. You can use the public cloud to hold backups of even sensitive data. The reason for this is that you would encrypt the data on your own servers (and ideally keep control of your own keys for maximum security). After that, the data would stay encrypted until it was either used or deleted.
If you went down this route, however, you’d need to implement an alternative disaster-recovery solution, presumably a second private cloud and you would need to ensure that this was also linked to the public cloud which was holding your data. The link would have to work both ways (importing and exporting) so you could resync everything with your main platform once it was operational again.
The alternative would be to use cloud service for both data backup and disaster recovery. This would probably incur a higher headline cost but could be both simpler and should make it possible for you to get up and running again more quickly as your data would already be where it needed to be.
You need to have a policy for deleting data backups
Again, this may sound like stating the obvious, but unless you have a solid process for deleting out-of-date backups, you can easily end up with significant and pointless storage costs.
If you’d like to speak to a reputable and experienced data backup provider in Elk Grove, please click here now to contact Salient IT.