There are two different areas to account for when researching backups: Backups for servers and backups for individual computers.
Servers are considered mission critical, meaning if your server is down, business processes completely stop. That’s why it’s essential to have a short Recovery Time Objective (RTO), or a short amount of time between when the system goes down and is recovered.
In terms of an RTO for your server, you should be setting up backups to run at intervals based on hours not days. We recommend image-based backups, which create a snapshot of all data on a server (apps, files, operating system, and so on). The benefit of image-based backups is instant recovery.
We recommend your backups are stored offsite and in the cloud. Which also assists with criteria you may be considering for business continuity and disaster recovery.
Because server backups are more defined all critical data should be kept on a server rather than an individual PC. However, individual computers still require backup services.
Traditional Computer Backup
Some individuals still backup computer data on a thumb drive. However, there is too much room for human error and it can be time consuming.
Automated Cloud Backup
An automated cloud backup method is more secure, consistent and simpler than traditional models.
If a computer houses critical systems like QuickBooks or AutoCAD, the computer should be treated like a server, i.e. image based backups and short RTO.
What We Use For Backups
There are many backup products on the market. Many of them are good, and for those of you who are interested we use StorageCraft for our image based backups. We also use a Windows product called Shadow Copy, which allows us to recover documents that have been revised from a point in time without going through a full server image backup.
The Only Good Backup Is A Tested Backup
Backups don’t do a lot of good if they aren’t working. Ensure your backups are set up by a quality IT service provider and ask them to ensure they are working from time to time.
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