The survival of an organization is dependable on data backup. More data is produced each day, and almost all information is now digitized. Many factors can cause data loss. In the event of a hardware malfunction, you can lose data on the servers and storage device. In the event of computer malware and hacking, your data can be wiped or locked with the crypto locker type of malware. In the event, your data is encrypted. You have two options. The first option is to pay a ransom. Depending on your company size, the price can range from $500 to $700.000, even a million. The second option is to restore from the backup. If you have one. If you have one, are you sure that the data can be restored? One of the often missed data loss is from a company workstation or a laptop. While the loss of data on a PC may not present a high risk, it can greatly impact the company. Just imagine what an engineer or a programmer can do in a week.
If virtualization is powering your business, you have to choose a reliable VMware backup solution that can store your data as fast as possible with the least space, that can be restored instantly. It should also be able to back up the rest of your company assets like workstations and laptops with an option to replicate to a secondary location and a copy to the cloud. Let’s take a look at the basics.
Types of data backup
When you create your first backup job, you will have to choose the type of backup. Below are the most common backup types.
A full backup will backup all files and folders every time it runs. If selected data is 1TB in size, the full backup job will backup your selection in full – 1TB of data every time it runs.
When you choose Incremental, the first time the job runs, it takes the full backup. Jobs that are run after a full backup include only new and updated data each time a backup runs after that. Recovery takes a while.
Differential backup is similar to incremental backup. Differential backs up all the changes in all the files from the previous backup. It takes more space compared to incremental, but it is much faster to restore.
Data Backup Solutions
There are different solutions on the market. Price varies a lot. The same can be said for quality and functionality. You can find a product with basic features for a low price and a product that covers all the requirements of a large enterprise with the price of a yearly income SMB. There are exceptions. Nakivo, for example, includes most enterprise features but is very affordable. You don’t have to buy the most expensive product to have a good backup solution. Let’s take a look at backup solutions.
Data backup solutions
Hardware appliances basically 19″, rack-mounted white-label servers, equipped with hard drives and backup software branded as a Backup solution. All you have to do is to plug them into your server’s rack, and you are ready to backup. You manage the backups via the web interface, and usually, the whole experience is quite pleasant. In the past, the main benefit of hardware appliances was deduplication. Custom solution that can save a lot of space if your data is mostly databases. The downside of hardware appliances is the price. Often than not ridiculously overpriced. Oh, and since the hardware can fail, it was best if you bought them in pairs.
Software solutions are installed on your systems. In most cases, they can be installed on a virtual machine. Most solutions require MS Windows Server, but there are bright exceptions that can be installed on a Linux OS. That way, you can save on Windows Server licenses.
NAS – Or build your own hardware appliances
As NAS devices have become powerful, you can use them for other tasks in addition to serving files. They can be used as a print server, private Office cloud, mail servers… there are many possibilities. And yes, you can use them for backup as well. For example, you can install Nakivo backup software on a NAS and create a very affordable hardware appliance with included deduplication.
Hybrid Data Backup solutions
The latest trend in the backup space is the Hybrid backup solution. A hybrid backup solution gives the backup administrator power and freedom to install the software on-premise or use it as a cloud service. That way, you have the best of both worlds. With solutions like Nakivo, you can even backup Office 365 data.
When the backup is run, a copy of your data is stored in backup storage. There are several options for data storage.
You can backup data on a local disk. Either on a physical server or Physical host of the virtual machine where you host your VMs. The benefit of local storage is speed. The downside of local storage is that it gets destroyed if the server or a physical server breaks down. Saying RAID is not backup has its value. Local disk is best used for quick backups, most commonly for the test environment.
External USB hard drives or USB keys are alternatives to tapes. The benefit is the transfer speed, as you can quickly transfer large amounts of data to USB SSD drives. You can even rotate backups and send them to a secondary location. The downside is the cost as external drives are quite expensive. If you use magnetic drives, you have to use special packaging when sending them as the drives can break if they are not handled well.
Network shares and NAS
Network share and especially NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices have changed the way we backup. We can have one large repository, and we can keep several years of data on the NAS. Backup and restore speed is great. Also, the cost of such devices has fallen dramatically. You can use cheap and high capacity drives and easily create a 126TB backup repository. You can have two NAS devices, one on the primary location and the second on the secondary location, for a backup replica. If your NAS is compromised, you can lose the backup if you don’t have a backup plan for the backup.
Tapes are a great way of archiving your data. Tapes are affordable, and you can use Tape loader / Tape library, which can automatically rotate tapes for backup. You can send tapes to the secondary location and can restore them in the worst scenario. But, tapes are slow, so if you have a lot of data, you should think about how to quickly restore the most important data.
A modern alternative to tape backup is cloud storage. The only thing you need is the internet. Fast internet. There are several types of cloud storage, and prices vary too. For example, fast storage is expensive, while slow to access cloud storage is very affordable. You have to consider additional fees for a large amount of data that you download. You can also backup entire servers, and in case your main location goes down, you can start servers in the cloud.
Which Data Backup Storage is the best?
Every storage solution has benefits and drawbacks. Every backup should adhere to the industry standard 3-2-1 strategy. Store your data in 3 places on two types of storage, and one copy should be stored off-site.
Your company is dependent on a good backup solution. You can’t go wrong by implementing the 3-2-1 backup rule. Everything starts with a proper backup objective. First, define the scope of your backups. The second information you need is how often you should backup. Ideally, you should know how fast you can recover. When choosing a solution, you can take a look at Nakivo. It can backup virtual infrastructure, physical servers, workstations, and laptops. It can back up to the cloud. You can install it on a Linux server and save money, and you can also install it on a NAS.