Two Data Backup Solutions Walk Into a Bar:
The first one sits down with a pile of money, and states he’s got a lot of free time on his hands and he’s going to be there all night. The second orders a soft drink, takes a few sips, and leaves.
Later that night, as Data Backup Solution Two is running a few errands, BAM – disaster strikes. A pipe springs a leak, and takes out a server. Two is immediately all hands on deck; prepared with the latest image of the server, which includes:
• a complete backup of the operating system
• all programs and applications, and 100% of the files, most of which are also backed up to the cloud, just in case.
Two holds tight, knowing everything will be ok. He’s seen this kind of problem before back in the winter of 2011.
Meanwhile, One is happily singing karaoke to “I’ve got Friends in Low Places” when he gets a call. Complete hard drive failure and corruption on the SQL server. One is uninterested, because it really doesn’t affect him. His only job is to back up a few photos, word, and excel files to the cloud, and he completed that task, so his work is done.
From 30,000 feet, signing up for an inexpensive online backup solution feels like disaster recovery, but it’s not. It’s only a small part of the complete package of what should be your number one priority when it comes to protecting your data. Online services do the job of backing up your files very well.
What they don’t do, is:
Back up your Operating System -
Why this matters – If you are running Server 2008 or Server 2012, and you lose it, how are you going to replace it? Your server probably shipped with the OS, and you didn’t give it a second thought, until the pipe burst.
Back up your Programs and Applications -
Why this matters – When your server was first setup, many painstaking hours were spent getting the server versions of your applications properly installed and configured. Do you have all those disks and downloaded files, or even a list of the programs you need?
Include an Image Backup -
Why this matters – An image based backup of a server is like having a heart surgeon and EMT on your plane if you have a heart attack while traveling. It’s practically the difference between life and death. With an imaged based backup and the right solution, you can continue working as if nothing has happened. HOW? Because the image can be “turned on” and “instructed” to run in a virtual environment until your new hardware arrives. Yes, it sounds technical and it is. So is the technology used to send thousands of files out your window into a server somewhere in the cloud, yet we seem perfectly comfortable paying for that.
Cloud backup is essential. It should be part of your disaster recovery solution. It should not BE your disaster recovery solution. (Read more about imaged based backup here)