As we pointed out in Five Questions to Ask About Backups and Restores, the other side of backing up your data is that someday, you may need to restore it. Restoring data can be a difficult process if your backup protocols aren’t where they need to be. Consider the following questions:
1. What sort of data do you need to restore?
The most common backup is that of the full server, and yet the most common restore requested is that of a single file. If you’re focusing your backup efforts toward restoring a failed server, to the exclusion of single files, emails, or folders, then you may be creating more work for your IT personnel than necessary.
2. Can you restore a single item without much problem?
How much time would it take to restore a single item, and how many hoops would you have to jump through to do it? That’s the central question here. Consider backing up data as an actual live volume, so that when the need arises, you can extract that data from the database rather than restoring whole database files or utilizing an additional server for storage.
3. How quickly can you recover an entire server?
It’s an event that most IT personnel dread – the server failure. From the standpoint of getting it up and going again, restoring a server can take time. But from the standpoint of lost productivity, you don’t have a lot of time to spare. The best solution is to prioritize which blocks of data get restored first, minimizing lost productivity, while IT staff work on getting the full server back online.
4. Is your backup integrated with your key applications?
Attaching directly to your applications will help to speed backups, aid in faster restores and recovery, and ensures reliability for each backup per application.
5. What’s your storage budget?
The variety of storage media used to be limited and expensive, and many companies continue to use the same storage solutions as they have always used. Other options exist, many of them more cost efficient than older methods, and give you a great deal more flexibility than ever before. Consider moving storage to the cloud, removable drives, or Network Attached Storage, or many of the other storage solutions available.
If you’ve asked yourself these five questions (and the five before them) and aren’t happy with the answers, contact Lieberman Technologies for assistance in analyzing your backup and restore needs. We can help you customize a solution that meets your requirements, with the capability to adapt to your needs.