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Data Backup – Are You Certain That You Can Restore Your Data Reliably?

Data Backup – Are You Certain That You Can Restore Your Data Reliably?

Data backup is, without a doubt, a critical activity in business today. If you are not currently performing a backup of your data, stop reading this article right now and go get started.

Unless you are winning the togel hari ini every week or can go to Vegas and return home with a suitcase full of money, you SHOULD be performing a regular data backup.

While you may have your own reasons why you should be backing up your data, I want to bring up a couple of reasons you may not have considered:

 

  • What is the impact upon your customer relationships?
  • What is the “real” cost of a loss?

 

Soft cost evaluation is the reason to consider the reasons above. Just like any activity in your business from buying paper clips to putting together a marketing campaign, there are soft costs that you must include in the total cost formula.

Nearly everyone who has not had a backup will tell you that soft costs are real and are probably higher than the actual hard costs associated with re-generating the data and doing business again. Unless you want to become am expensive statistic, perform a backup.

If you were not convinced to perform a data backup, you probably are now and that is a good start. You are no longer rolling the dice but you are still in the casino. Let me explain why.

As suggested by the title, you must make sure that AFTER a data backup you can successfully restore files of various types. While that may seem obvious, it is truly shocking how few people actually do it.

ALL backup media fails. This should not be news to you. Tapes, Tape Drives, Hard Disks, or other means you use to perform your local backup is mechanical. Mechanical devices, even with routine maintenance, fail. There are ways to avoid the failed backup scenario but that topic is for another article.

What type of files should you verify from the restore? In general, if you want to make sure your backup is correctly restored, you should pick files found in a number of directories and drives. The objective is to perform a random test. If you are able to restore, view and copy the files, you can be pretty sure that your backup has been performed properly.

Server backups need to be treated differently. That is especially true if the backup is of your database server. Since the data housed in your database server is quite literally the life blood of your business, you should be willing to spend additional time and resources to verify the backup.

There are many ways to effectively restore and verify a server. The method described here is the simplest we have found that predicts that the backup was successful. To verify a server is more complicated than simply checking a few random files. You should follow, at a minimum, these steps:

 

  • Have a SEPARATE PC available with plenty of disk space
  • Restore the backup onto the PC
  • Perform a directory comparison with your running server using windiff or a similar tool
  • Compare a few of the restored files with your running server to verify the contents

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