The Entrepreneur TechTakes - Recovering from Disaster: It’s About Preparation
By: Ron Derven, contributing editor, Development.
If you were caught off guard by Superstorm Sandy or a plethora of other natural calamities in recent years, you might be struggling to put your business back together. The loss of desks, chairs, and even the building that houses your business, could be minor compared to the loss of company data.
One effective way to protect that data is to use so called “cloud storage,” according to Abdul Altamimi, executive vice president of technical services for RestorePoint, Inc, Alpharetta, GA, a leading provider of centralized disaster recovery, compliance monitoring, change detection and asset tracking for complex multi-vendor environments.
Cloud backup and recovery is a process of backing up the business data of an organization and storing it in “the cloud,” simply put, a server that is in a different location than the business. Having a cloud backup and recovery element in a disaster recovery plan could mean the difference between getting a business back up and running quickly or closing the doors for good.
Using cloud backup and recovery is more efficient when compared to tape backup. Once in place, a cloud backup runs automatically without much need for human intervention, especially if it uses an agentless architecture, where the backup software does not need to be installed on every machine. Instead, the software can be installed on a single machine and reach out over the network to backup files or application data — essentially everything that needs to be protected. This approach is less resource intensive and less intrusive on the IT environment.
Cloud backup allows data to be recovered and restored quickly and easily, especially if the solution provides both local and remote recovery that is optimized with high-performance data de-duplication and autonomic healing to ensure data integrity. De-duplication prevents duplicate data from being backed up, which optimizes the backup environment and speeds recovery. Autonomic healing finds corrupted files and ensures they are fixed as part of data integrity to enable restorability in the future. This is an important feature — imagine going through the ordeal of surviving from a natural disaster only to find the restored data corrupted and useless.
A Real World Example
Equity One, Inc. is a Miami-based commercial real estate developer. According to Altamimi, the company used tape backup systems for its data protection needs when it was much smaller, but as the company grew, the IT department found it too difficult to work with tapes. The tape rotation had to be kept straight or problems would occur and performing a backup would take most of the day. Recovering data was a major hassle, requiring retrieval of tapes from an off site storage location, finding the first tape in the rotation, and conducting the recovery incrementally. By switching to cloud-based backup and recovery in early 2002, Equity One found efficiencies immediately. If any problem occurred, Equity One was notified by RestorePoint engineers, the cloud backup and recovery service provider for the company. While Equity One has been fortunate to not have experienced a disaster affecting business operations, the cloud backup solution provided by RestorePoint has made their day-to-day restoration needs much easier.
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