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A quick guide to data backup storage in Sacramento
The principle of data backup is about as simple as you can get. You need to protect your data to protect your business. The practice, however, can be rather more complicated. This is because a lot depends on the company’s situation. That said, there are some general issues most, if not all SMBs will need to address. With that in mind, here is a quick guide to data backup storage in Sacramento.
Keeping your production systems clean minimizes the amount of data backup storage you need
All storage has a cost. It, therefore, makes sense to minimize this cost as much as you can. This is particularly true if you’re working in the cloud, where you pay for exactly what you use for exactly as long as you use it. Even with physical storage, however, it makes sense to keep your costs as low as possible.
The obvious way to minimize the amount of data backup storage you need is to minimize the amount of data you need to back up, in other words, the amount of data you keep in your production systems. There are usually three steps to achieving this.
Firstly, you want to minimize the amount of data you collect in the first place. Sensitive data should only ever be collected based on need and it’s a good idea to apply this principle to all data. Secondly, you want to keep your data clean (for example to eliminate duplicates and fragments of data). Thirdly, you want to move dormant data swiftly out of production, either delete it or archive it. Archiving does, of course, use storage, but you can use more affordable storage (and you won’t have your other data backup costs).
Offline storage versus online storage
If you’re still running a data center, then offline storage will really be your only option for your local data backup. You can then choose between offline storage and online storage (i.e. the cloud) for our off-site data backup. If you’re already in the cloud then your local data backup will be to the cloud. In principle, you can choose between offline storage and online storage for your off-site data backup, but in practice, the only sensible option is likely to be to take your off-site data backup to a second cloud.
Your offline storage choices
Realistically, your offline storage choices boil down to hard drives and tapes. At present, SSDs are far too expensive for the average SMB to use as their main storage solution. CDs/DVDs, meanwhile, are both too fragile and too cumbersome for that kind of use in a business environment. The one exception might be the very smallest SMBs, but these days they’d almost certainly be working in the public cloud anyway.
Hard drives have a lot of good points. They’re affordable, convenient, straightforward and much faster than tapes. Unfortunately, they also have a high failure rate. It has to be said that when hard drives fail there are generally some warning signs. It also has to be acknowledged that it is often possible to recover data from failed hard drives (although there is usually a cost to this). There is, however, no getting away from the fact that this is a longstanding issue with hard drives and one which is unlikely to be resolved any time soon (if ever).
Tapes are still popular. Part of the reason for this, however, is probably because some companies have already invested heavily in the infrastructure needed to run data backups to tape. That said, this is far from the only argument in favor of tapes. They are reliable and robust and, after the initial investment, very economical. Unfortunately, they are also very slow.
Interestingly, however, the slowness of tapes can be mitigated by partnering them with SSDs. Basically, the data is run through the SSD first. The SSDs buffers it and uses its indexing capabilities to clean and compress it before passing it to the tape. This offers substantial performance improvements compared to using tapes alone and is much less expensive than using SSDs as your main storage medium.
Data backup storage and the cloud
When it comes to data backup storage and the cloud, the key point to note is that you pay for exactly what you use for exactly as long as you use it. This means that it literally pays to manage your data effectively. In particular, you want to segment your data according to your business priorities and then store each segment in the slowest form of storage you can reasonably use for it.
If you’d like to speak to a reputable and experienced data backup storage partner in Sacramento, please click here now to contact Aperio.IT.