A disk can fail, files or email folders can be accidentally deleted, or even worse, a disaster occurs. All this will lead to disturbance of processes and sometimes even to downtime of the organization. Making backups should not be seen as wasted energy but as insurance against unforeseen undesirable situations.
“Ideally you would follow the 3-2-1 rule when it comes to backups. This means having 3 copies of your data, stored on 2 different types of media, with 1 copy stored offsite.”
No set answer for backup requirements
It is virtually impossible to provide a general rule for making backups besides just doing it. Important things to take into consideration are:
Automation allows for frequent backups
It goes without saying that frequent backups of your data are important to protect your business operations. However, making manual backups is time and labour consuming. The sensitivity and the importance of your data decide how often you must make backups. This can range from continuous backup to backups once a week. To save costs and add reliability we recommend automated backup software. We partner with industry leader Veeam to ensure your data is always backed up.
How much loss of data is acceptable?
What method of backup is ideal for your business operations depends on a few things. Have you ever asked yourself what would happened to your business operations if part of your data can't be recovered? If even a minute of unrecoverable data has a negative impact on your business operations you need to go with synchronous replication. In synchronous replication (backups) data is immediately backed up during or right after write-complete.
If a short period of loss of data doesn't have a negative impact on your business operations then asynchronous backups are an option for you. With asynchronous backups you make backups of your data every few hours.
Better affordability makes Flash ideal for backup
The data that you need to backup decides the type of medium that you use. When you back up mission-critical data, it is smart to back up to a faster medium such as Flash. This helps you get your data back and running as soon as possible in case of a data loss. Backups of archive data that are not mission-critical can be stored on HDD or even tape. However, with Flash becoming more affordable there is no reason to wait with transitioning your archive backups to Flash to prepare yourself for the future.
If your goal is to follow the 3-2-1 rule you will need to make sure to use two different types of medium. In this case, you store one backup on Flash and a second backup on HDD or tape.
A mix of cloud and on-premises backups
If you already follow the 3-2-1 rule, you know that it is important to have 3 copies of your data with 1 of them stored offsite. We suggest you use a cloud provider such as Microsoft Azure to satisfy the offsite backup rule. Microsoft Azure offers high reliability and uptime as well as advanced security and data encryption. However, when dealing with large amounts of data, cloud storage could become costly. Therefore, we recommend utilizing your on-premises network to store the remaining two copies of data.
Testing doesn't have to be time and resource-consuming
It is important to frequently test your backups. In case you have to fall back on a backup you want to make sure that the backup will be restored without any issues. It is especially important to test backups after upgrading to new firmware, when hardware or software has been replaced, or if you plan to restore a backup to a different machine.
As the testing of backups can be time-consuming and takes your personnel away from other tasks, we strongly recommend exploring Veeam Availability Suite. Veeam Availability Suite gives you the power to verify the recoverability of backups by using SureBackup and SureReplica.
Our specialists at Strada Networks have extensive experience in the design and implementation of backup environments. We can advise you on the use of the right equipment and software to create backups that fit your unique organizational needs.