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Asking where to concentrate with commercial backup techniques

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I have reached a point that I am overwhelmed with all the techniques and software out there (and backup philosophy,meaning deciding when and how much to backup).I am starting to get exposed to programs like rsync,dervish,backupPC,openDedupe and then the option to image or clone a drive as a backup technique.My question is,where to concentrate my studies. I was not aware that the subject of "backing up your data" was going to generate so many opinions on how to do it,with everyone wanting you to use (and learn) their software. Any pointers on where to draw the line,I can't do it all it seems.
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post #2 of 10
the point is not really necessarily what tool that you use but that you DO do it. Often and regular. My philosophy is a full drive image monthly kept off-site in a fire/other major disaster resistant location with data backed up nightly/weekly again kept off-site. nightly data backups kept on-site for easy location and restoration.
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post #3 of 10
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We are getting into all this analysis about using the least amount of resources and what the pros and cons of how to implement the recovery process,including making the best use of employee time.When all of these variables are pulled into the question "what is the best backup policy/procedure for company ABC" it seems like you can talk all night about the issue but still end up with a compromise.Thanks for making me feel that learning every theory of backups that exist is not really required.I would at least like to be able to get comfortable with some main techniques.Our instrusctor suggests a hybrid approach combining rsync with dervish,lots of reading to do.I feel backups is such a large area that trying to cover it in 2, 4 hour sessions only confuses people (well at least it confuses me).
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post #4 of 10
Basically i divide backup into two categorys: file back up and system back up. I keep them separate because programs that are good for system images are not good for file backup in my eyes. I hate when programs make compressed folders/images of my files. Also, when they run backups they can take up excessive room on the drive.

I use robocopy and freefilesync because they are great for syncing and mirroring folders from my main drive to my backup drive and they are light on resources. I run that 1 time every day, I usually have it on a schedule to run at like 3am. This makes sure all my data is backed up and up to date every day in case something happens.

I use Windows imaging tool or easeus todo backup for system images. I do a system image of only the OS when I first set up my system and then every few weeks to months following. This doesn't really even mater much to me because a reinstall and set up doesn't really take long anyways.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Sean, I had not asked or brought up opinions on a division of system and data backups, the idea was on my mind,I was not ignoring the idea that there could be a rationale for using different methods depending on if your backup was data or a system.

Perhaps you can tell that these questions of mine are instigated by a class at school (Advanced Linux Networking).My instructors speciality is in the data storage field.He comes up with ideas,questions,proposals to the class that I have barely skimmed an article about.It is all I can do to just sit and listen as I do not know enough about the subject to come up with my own proposal.We are not working out of any textbook,just technical articles off the web and a lot of "how to's". We are to bring back a report on the online info for the "how to's" related to backupPC and dervisih.This will not be a problem.

One thing on the non-technical side that he did relate,he says it is hard to sell disaster plans,he wants our opinions on why this is so. Thanks to all and reps to all.
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post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by PCCstudent View Post

We are getting into all this analysis about using the least amount of resources and what the pros and cons of how to implement the recovery process,including making the best use of employee time.When all of these variables are pulled into the question "what is the best backup policy/procedure for company ABC" it seems like you can talk all night about the issue but still end up with a compromise.Thanks for making me feel that learning every theory of backups that exist is not really required.I would at least like to be able to get comfortable with some main techniques.Our instrusctor suggests a hybrid approach combining rsync with dervish,lots of reading to do.I feel backups is such a large area that trying to cover it in 2, 4 hour sessions only confuses people (well at least it confuses me).

your right this is something that can be discussed forever so just a quick overview.. In any commercial back up plan the first thing that comes to mind is Risk Management and Security, so here you place emphasis on first securing data,.. IMO this is first done at the network level with tiered HW firewalls, followed by "risk" what is sensitive I.E financial records, personal information etc so what data should be encrypted and what data can be left as unencrypted so ask, what is more at risk?

Back ups, now i assume we are talking huge amounts of data and enterprise level, not just your some home user.. here comes in Business Continuity planning, from my understanding these are policies that plan for data corruption, loss and even theft/viruses hence why back up.. so the main concern at this part is recovering from data loss/corrupted ASAP and maintaining business continuity.. any down time means loss of revenue or worst in the case of data theft.. back to business continuity, RAID is one tier to recover from data corruption, redundant storage servers that can come online as soon as a server goes down. backing up to offsite datacenter's offers another tier of data protection as in the worst case scenario you data can be restored in the case of total failure or environmental damages to your own servers such as fire.. this could go on for ever LOL but in the end it all comes down to business continuity planning, so for this to be effective data recovery solutions must be put into place and polices drawn up (disaster recovery) smile.gif

IMO in an a large enterprise, no data should be stored on a users machine, thats why SANs and enterprise NAS servers were invented.. realistically only the OS should be installed on a users machine and apps in a repository of the company and even then you could run a zero client where even the OS is loaded from a server across the network smile.gif
Edited by stubass - 4/2/12 at 2:37am
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post #7 of 10
All of that^
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks stub, you are correct this is all about enterprise level disaster recovery or even just best practices reguarding protection of data that if lost will cost money because no business can be done.We do not spend any time at all about what a home user should be doing(and this is my interest as enterprise level employment is not going to happen for me).I feel this is an error but I am not in charge of the syllabus.One thing,my instructor does not consider RAID to be a form of backup.He says RAID is a way to maintain,not backup.You can see how this discussion can go on a good while.
Edited by PCCstudent - 4/2/12 at 4:24pm
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post #9 of 10
Well he is right, RAID is not a back up solution. Think about it. If the data in the server is all on a RAID array in a building and the building burns down the data that was "backed up" will be destroyed inside by the fire. A backup solution is when you have the data in a secure place(s) away from the main storage and work area. So if worst comes to worst there is still a way to have the data one way or another.
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by PCCstudent View Post

Thanks stub, you are correct this is all about enterprise level disaster recovery or even just best practices reguarding protection of data that if lost will cost money because no business can be done.We do not spend any time at all about what a home user should be doing(and this is my interest as enterprise level employment is not going to happen for me).I feel this is an error but I am not in charge of the syllabus.One thing,my instructor does not consider RAID to be a form of backup.He says RAID is a way to maintain,not backup.You can see how this discussion can go on a good while.

yep it is something that can be discussed for days on end biggrin.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Webster View Post

Well he is right, RAID is not a back up solution. Think about it. If the data in the server is all on a RAID array in a building and the building burns down the data that was "backed up" will be destroyed inside by the fire. A backup solution is when you have the data in a secure place(s) away from the main storage and work area. So if worst comes to worst there is still a way to have the data one way or another.

all of this^^ and yes RAID is not a back up solution but part of a tiered solution and disaster recovery in the case of drive failure to maintain continuity and data integrity IMO. it still has its uses though smile.gif
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