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What you need to know about data center backup in West Sacramento
By this point, the importance of data backups is, or should be, IT 101. The principle itself is simple enough but putting it into practice effectively can be rather more challenging. Fortunately, it is possible, even for SMBs on a tight budget. With that in mind, here is a quick guide to what you need to know about data center backup in West Sacramento.
Data center backups start with understanding your data
Although the very term “data center” emphasizes the data, it’s important to understand that, in this context, “data” means more than just the data items which populate your apps. You need to think about backing up resources such as operating systems and applications and even potentially infrastructure (although this may depend on your disaster recovery plans).
You need a strategy and the right tools for the job
Your strategy starts with knowing your data. This will inform your choice of tools. The first decision you need to make is how you are going to manage your data center backups, i.e. through hardware, through software, through the cloud or through a hybrid solution that combines elements of software and elements of the cloud.
Realistically, hardware-based solutions are likely to be a very bad choice for the majority of modern businesses. They are simple and convenient, but they are also, by definition, vulnerable to hardware failure. The cloud is also simple and convenient and it isn’t vulnerable to hardware failure. This means that if simplicity is your priority, Backup as a Service is likely to work out better for you than a hardware solution.
If simplicity isn’t a priority if simplicity isn’t even an option, then software is almost certainly the right way to go. You then need to work out how to choose the right data center backup software from the numerous options on the market.
The first point to check is whether or not any given software option does everything you need it to do and if not whether there is another option that could plug any gaps. These days it is increasingly common for businesses, even SMBs, to need to use more than one solution due to the need to support a plethora of environments (particularly virtual ones), operating systems and applications, often including a mixture of ones which run in data centers and ones which run in clouds, private and/or public.
In principle, you should be able to tell all this just from a look at the product description. In practice, you’re probably going to need to do some thorough research and testing to be sure that the vendor’s support for any given platform is as robust as you need it to be. Evaluation periods can be very useful here.
Speaking of support, you also want to know what ongoing help you can expect from the vendor. This is massively important, especially in complex environments, where even minor changes can create the risk of interoperability issues.
One of the big advantages of working with a good data center backup vendor is that they can usually provide technical support which is as good, if not better than the support provided by the retailer.
This is because issues with data center backup software are very rarely caused by the software itself, they are usually caused by an interoperability issue between the software and some aspect of the hardware, operating system or application(s). Data center backup vendors often have greater experience of dealing with the environment as a whole, rather than just with the software.
It is important to choose the right storage for your needs
You’re probably going to want to use physical storage for your local data center backup and for practical purposes your choice is between hard drives, SSD drives, and tapes. Hard drives offer decent storage and retrieval speeds, but they are prone to failure. SSD drives are speedy and not too prone to failure, but when they do fail they tend to do so without warning and it is very difficult (and expensive) to retrieve data from them. Tapes are the old favorite and are still valued for their reliability, but they are notoriously slow.
Many organizations are now operating a “disk-to-tape” strategy, in which an SSD drive is essentially used as a filter to buffer, clean and compress data before it is finally stored on a tape. Managed properly, this can offer the best of both worlds for local storage.
For your off-site data center backup, you have a choice between replicating your local data center backup and just backing up to the cloud. While storing physical media off-line may indeed be more secure, this has to be set against the time and costs involved in moving, storing and retrieving the media.
If you’d like to speak to a reputable and experienced data center backup partner in West Sacramento, please click here now to contact Salient IT.