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Affordable Intelligent Business Continuity Redefines Data Protection for Small Business

How often have you heard about local backup systems that didn’t work when they were needed?  Tape or backup drives failed or the backed up data had been corrupted, rendering it useless. The backup devices themselves suffered physical damage, or necessary files were omitted.  And as we know all too well on the East Coast, the lack of commercial power for days effectively isolates the workforce from business data.

We’ve written before about the staggering number of business failures that result directly from a data loss.  As IT systems become more important over time to business, the ability to recover from a ‘disaster’ becomes more important, too.

Cloud-based backup offers a partial solution, but suffers from some of the same issues (corrupt data, being one) while adding some new ones (bandwidth and storage space, for example).

And no matter whether backup is local or cloud-based, it can often take days or weeks to recover data and return to full operation.

The best solution combines the best attributes of local and cloud-based systems, adds some functionality to eliminate the drawbacks, and allows for rapid recovery.  Datto, the leading maker of backup and recovery systems for small businesses, calls this combination intelligent business continuity. The components of an intelligent business continuity system are:

  1. Image-based backups.  Full, image-based backups eliminate the possibility of omitting critical files.
  2. Full top-level backup.  Each individual backup is compared to all prior backups, and only incremental changes are added,
    saving bandwidth and space.  A full, top-level backup is built containing all data ever present in addition to
    incremental additions.  Even if data is not present (i.e. deleted) from subsequent backups, the full top-level backup contains
    the data.  Contrast this with other backup plans that overwrite older data to manage storage requirements.
  3. Recovery from either local or cloud resources.  The local backup appliance both saves the backup images locally and
    stores those images in the cloud.  In cases where the local appliance cannot perform the recovery (damage, lack of
    power), or function as the failed network resource, entire networks can be recreated virtually and connected to in the cloud.
  4. Regular verification of backup integrity.  This can be accomplished in a number of ways; Datto automatically takes a daily
    backup and virtualizes it locally, off-network.  The system then verifies that the backup not only contains your data, but that in the event of a real crash or disaster it can be booted up and function in place of the production system.  Errors are reported automatically to the system administrator.
  5. Bare metal restores.  The ability to restore to new or different hardware is critical for recovery from physical damage or when utilizing backup or temporary facilities.
  6. Minimized manual requirements.  Systems should not rely on manual operations to manual administration and operation of the backup process.

The newer systems, such as the new Datto Alto offering, leverage cloud storage and innovation to provide smaller businesses with enterprise-grade business continuity at a fraction of the traditional cost.  For more information about intelligent business continuity and to find out how affordable it is, please contact Sound Technology Services.

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