Why Backup

For many businesses the data on their computers are the digital assets of the organization. This can include accounting data such as accounts receivable and payable information, payroll records, CRM data, documents, spreadsheets, pictures, videos and more.  Losing this data could mean the very existence of the company and the loss of jobs. 

Having the right backup solution can provide a disaster recovery and business continuity solution.  The right backup solution is key to providing data recovery and to minimize the disruption on the organization to provide products or services to its customers.


Viruses, Malware, Ransomware, computer loss or theft, accidental deletion, natural disaster are just some of the ways you can lose data.  Preparing for the unexpected by having the right backup solution and strategy can help recover from a data loss large or small.
What is a Backup
A backup is the process of making a copy of a file or files and depending on the backup type, a full image of all of the files, programs and even the operating system.  A backup can be on the same computer (not recommended), a flash drive, external hard drive, a backup device such as a NAS (Network Attached Storage) and even the Cloud.  Selecting the right backup and where you store your backup is key in being to recover your data when it is needed.
Backup Devices and Locations

Your Computer

You can backup a file on your computer or device but it is not advisable to do this.  By storing your backup on your computer you put the back at risk in the event you get a Virus/Malware or a mechanical failure such as your hard drive failing. Normally you want to backup your files on a device such as a flash drive, external hard drive, a NAS or the cloud. 

Pro
Provides a quick way to do a fast backup

Cons
Your backup is on the same computer. If you get a virus it can also take out your backup
A flash drive is a portable device  you can plug into a USB port on your computer.  This device acts like a hard drive allowing you to copy or save files to it.  Often users will use the flash drive as their only place to save files.  This can be dangerous since often these files are not backed up.  Flash drives can be prone to failure and loss. 

A flash drive can be used as a medium to store your backup.  if you do use a flash drive for a backup you should make sure you understand what you are backing up.  Files that contain sensitive information such as username and passwords, Personal Identifiable Information  (PHI), Social Security Numbers, Medical or banking information, just to name a few, should be encrypted with the appropriate encryption level for the data you are storing.

Pros
Flash drive provide portability so you can store your backup offsite
Inexpensive option to setup

Cons
Drive can be lost. If data is not encrypted the can be substantial risk.
Drive can "short circuit" when removed from the USB port.
Storage space is usually limited so this is not a good option for image based backups


Flash Drive

External Hard Drive

An external drive  is a portable device like a flash drive  you can plug into a USB port on your computer.  This device allows you to copy or save files to it.  Like the flash drive, users will use the external hard drive as their only place to save files.  This can be dangerous since often these files are not backed up.  Flash drives can be prone to failure and loss. 

A flash drive can be used as a medium to store your backup.  if you do use a flash drive for a backup you should make sure you understand what you are backing up.  Files that contain sensitive information such as username and passwords, Personal Identifiable Information  (PHI), Social Security Numbers, Medical or banking information, just to name a few, should be encryption with the appropriate encryption level for the data you are storing.

Pros
Flash drive provide portability so you can store your backup offsite
Somewhat Inexpensive option to setup.  A good external hard drive with encryption and other feature sets can be expensive

Backups are usually faster than other solutions
External drives are usually large and can support image based backups

Cons
Drive can be lost. If data is not encrypted the can be substantial risk.
Drive can "short circuit" when removed from the USB port.

Large drives can hold a lot of data which can be a problem if lost if not properly encrypted

Network Attached Storage

Network Attached Storage (NAS) is a device with one or more hard drives built in and attaches to your computer network.  This device can be used to back up one or more computers or devices across a network. 

Many NAS units have one or more hard drives which increases the storage space available to backup computers.  This makes a NAS a good choice to perform image based backups which is a complete copy of one or more hard drives in your computer.  This is an excellent choice for disaster recovery allowing you to recover the entire computer including the data, programs and even the operating system.  The NAS alone usually does not perform the image backup which means you will need special backup software that can perform the image backup.

Pros
NAS can be used to backup one or more computers
NAS can be used for image based backups
Data can be encrypted
Data can be shared with other users

Cons
NAS units can be expensive depending on the size and feature set
NAS can be affected by virus and malware since it is attached to the network
It is recommended to use a Cloud option to supplement data backup


Cloud Backups

Cloud based backup are relatively new to the backup options.  Cloud is just a fancy word that means your data is backed up offsite using someone else's storage.  This is a great disaster recovery option since the data is located off premise providing a layer of protection from catastrophic events such as a fire or act of God.  Many Cloud backup providers do not have a full image option which means you will just be backing up you files such as documents, spreadsheets, pictures, music and other relatively small files.

Pros:
Your data is stored off site and provides a layer of protection against catastrophic events
Doesn't require an investment in hardware or software

Cons
Initial backup can take days or weeks to complete
Restores can take days or weeks to recover files
Backup Commander
Backup Commander is a hybrid solution that encompasses several technologies to provide backup, disaster recovery and a business continuity solution in one

Backup Commander is a critical component to your disaster recovery plan. With
Backup Commander an entire image of your server is backed up including your
data, programs and the operating system. With remote monitoring and
management your backups are monitored and the backup server is maintained
including all patches and updates. Backup Commander is a complete backup and
monitoring solution and a critical component to your disaster and recovery plan.

Features of Backup Commander
Full Image Backup – backup all files including the operating system
Backups can be scheduled as often as every 15 minutes
Recover a single file or the entire server
Failover to the backup server in the event the main server goes down
Remote Monitoring and Management – we verify your backups are working
Backup Microsoft SQL, Exchange, and SharePoint servers and other critical
application servers, including updates in memory
Daily offsite backup to our datacenter
No Hardware to Purchase—subscription service covers hardware, monitoring,
management and offsite backup


Contact us today for more information


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