Backups: Why Data Redundancy is the Key.

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We’ve all been there. After years of never having to even think about what it’s doing, your hard drive stops working. Sometimes, you get lucky. It spins up long enough to retrieve your data before officially heading to the great e-waste recycler in the sky. Sometimes, though, that data is just gone. You have to recreate it as best you can and hope for the best. That’s sort of acceptable for personal data, but when it’s data from your business? Losing it spells disaster. Backups are the best way to make sure you never lose your information.

For years, most backups were kept physically on-site. CD-ROMs, floppy disks, or thumb drives kept most of our data safely backed up. Most businesses these days have far too much information for this kind of storage to be practical. There are many options these days for making sure your data is usable regardless of what happens, and they aren’t limited to 32GB or less. You can rely on on-site backups such as servers or external hard drives, off-site backups and/or portable hardware, or cloud-based backups. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages, but unless you know what those are, you don’t know which might work best for you.

Backups have come a long way. Image depicts old fashioned backup methods. A blue 9 in 1 card reader, red CD-R, small spiral notebook, several USB thumb drives, a green 3.5 inch floppy and a hard drive.

On-Site Backups:

An on-site backup is something like an external hard drive or server that is located in the same building as the original device which is being backed-up. On-site backups are easy to access, fast to import, and under your physical control. This makes the data highly secure from things like hacks. Unfortunately, if something physically happens to the building, such as a fire, the on-site backup is likely to be compromised along with the original.

Off-Site Backups:

An off-site backup is a physical drive similar to the ones used for on-site backups. Data is either transmitted via the internet or physically moved off-site to a secondary secure location. They can be moved or uploaded anywhere from daily to monthly. The data is much more secure in the case of a natural disaster. They are also ordinarily safe from data breaches and hacks. Unfortunately, if something happens to the original device, you may be stuck waiting a long time to retrieve your data. This can take anywhere from hours to a week. If your business relies on fast access to data to run, this may not be the solution for you.

Cloud Based Backups:

Many businesses these days rely on cloud based backups. While a cloud based backup relies on an internet connection for transmission, it solves many of the issues with traditional physical backup media. You need not keep track of external hardware, schedule pick-ups, or find a place to put your server. All you need for a cloud backup is your internet connection. Most cloud backup providers either upload files as you save them or upload data once a day and send it to their storage.

Cloud based backups are, generally, the best solution for most small to medium sized businesses. They’re reliable, require no physical storage space, and generally speaking are fairly low cost.

If you’d like help choosing and implementing a backup solution, we would love to help. Call or message Problem 86 today!


About the Author:

Project Coordinator, office mom, research queen.
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