|By Greg Schulz||
|March 29, 2014 05:16 PM EDT||
Data Protection Diaries: March 31 World Backup Day is Restore Data Test Time
By Greg Schulz
World Backup Day Generating Awareness About Data Protection
This World Backup Day piece is part of my ongoing Data Protection Diaries series of posts (www.dataprotecitondiaries.com) about trends, strategies, tools and best practices spanning applications, archiving, backup/restore, business continuance (BC), business resiliency (BR), cloud, data footprint reduction (DFR), security, servers, storage and virtualization among other related topic themes.
March 31 is World Backup Day which means you should make sure that your data and digital assets (photos, videos, music or audio, scanned items) along with other digital documents are protected. Keep in mind that various reasons for protecting, preserving and serving your data regardless of if you are a consumer with needs to protect your home and personal information, or a large business, institution or government agency.
Why World Backup Day and Data Protection Focus
By being protected this means making sure that there are copies of your documents, data, files, software tools, settings, configurations and other digital assets. These copies can be in different locations (home, office, on-site, off-site, in the cloud) as well as for various points in time or recovery point objective (RPO) such as monthly, weekly, daily, hourly and so forth.
Having different copies for various times (e.g. your protection interval) gives you the ability to go back to a specific time to recover or restore lost, stolen, damaged, infected, erased, or accidentally over-written data. Having multiple copies is also a safeguard incase either the data, files, objects or items being backed up or protected are bad, or the copy is damaged, lost or stolen.
Restore Test Time
While the focus of world backup data is to make sure that you are backing up or protecting your data and digital assets, it is also about making sure what you think is being protected is actually occurring. It is also a time to make sure what you think is occurring or know is being done can actually be used when needed (restore, recover, rebuild, reload, rollback among other things that start with R). This means testing that you can find the files, folders, volumes, objects or data items that were protected, use those copies or backups to restore to a different place (you don’t want to create a disaster by over-writing your good data).
In addition to making sure that the data can be restored to a different place, go one more step to verify that the data can actually be used which means has it be decrypted or unlocked, have the security or other rights and access settings along with meta data been applied. While that might seem obvious it is often the obvious that will bite you and cause problems, hence take some time to test that all is working, not to mention get some practice doing restores.
Data Protection and Backup 3 2 1 Rule and Guide
Recently I did a piece based on my own experiences with data protection including Backup as well as Restore over at Spiceworks called My copies were corrupted: The 3-2-1 rule. For those not familiar, or as a reminder 3 2 1 means have more than three copies or better yet, versions stored on at least two different devices, systems, drives, media or mediums in at least one different location from the primary or main copy.
Following is an excerpt from the My copies were corrupted: The 3-2-1 rule piece:
Not long ago I had a situation where something happened to an XML file that I needed. I discovered it was corrupted, and I needed to do a quick restore.
“No worries,” I thought, “I’ll simply copy the most recent version that I had saved to my file server.” No such luck. That file had been just copied and was damaged.
“OK, no worries,” I thought. “That’s why I have a periodic backup copy.” It turns out that had worked flawlessly. Except there was a catch — it had backed up the damaged file. This meant that any and all other copies of the file were also damaged as far back as to when the problem occurred.
Read the full piece here.
Backup and Data Protection Walking the Talk
Yes I eat my own dog food meaning that I practice what I talk about (e.g. walking the talk) leveraging not just a 3 2 1 approach, actually more of a 4 3 2 1 hybrid which means different protection internals, various retention's and frequencies, not all data gets treated the same, using local disk, removable disk to go off-site as well as cloud. I also test candidly more often by accident using the local, removable and cloud copies when I accidentally delete something, or save the wrong version.
Some of my data and applications are protected throughout the day, others on set schedules that vary from hours to days to weeks to months or more. Yes, some of my data such as large videos or other items that are static do not change, so why backup them up or protect every day, week or month? I also align the type of protection, frequency, retention to meet different threat risks, as well as encrypt data. Part of actually testing and using the restores or recoveries is also determining what certificates or settings are missing, as well as where opportunities exist or needed to enhance data protection.
Closing comments (for now)
Take some time to learn more about data protection including how you can improve or modernize while rethinking what to protect, when, where, why how and with what.
In addition to having copies from different points in time and extra copies in various locations, also make sure that they are secured or encrypted AND make sure to protect your encryption keys. After all, try to find a digital locksmith to unlock your data who is not working for a government agency when you need to get access to your data ;)...
Learn more about data protection including Backup/Restore at www.dataprotectiondiaries.com where there are a collection of related posts and presentations including:
- 5 Tips for Factoring Software into Disaster Recovery Plans
- Remote office backup, archiving and disaster recovery for networking pros
- Securing your information assets and data, what about your storage?
- 3 Questions to Help SMBs Plan a Backup Strategy
- Until the focus expands to data protection, backup is staying alive!
- Data Protection Modernization, More than swapping out media
- Cloud storage: Dont be scared, however look before you leap
- Virtual, Cloud and IT Availability, its a shared responsibility and common sense
Also check out the collection of technology and vendor / product neutral data protection and backup/restore content at BackupU (disclosure: sponsored by Dell Data Protection Software) that includes various webinars and Google+ hangout sessions that I have been involved with.
Watch for more data protection conversations about related trends, themes, technologies, techniques perspectives in my ongoing data protection diaries discussions as well as read more about Backup and other related items at www.dataprotectiondiaries.com.
Ok, nuff said
The principles behind DevOps are not new - for decades people have been automating system administration and decreasing the time to deploy apps and perform other management tasks. However, only recently did we see the tools and the will necessary to share the benefits and power of automation with a wider circle of people. In his session at DevOps Summit, Bernard Sanders, Chief Technology Officer at CloudBolt Software, explored the latest tools including Puppet, Chef, Docker, and CMPs needed to...
Feb. 12, 2016 01:30 AM EST Reads: 338
With the Apple Watch making its way onto wrists all over the world, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a staple in the workplace. In fact, Forrester reported that 68 percent of technology and business decision-makers characterize wearables as a top priority for 2015. Recognizing their business value early on, FinancialForce.com was the first to bring ERP to wearables, helping streamline communication across front and back office functions. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kevin Roberts...
Feb. 12, 2016 12:45 AM EST Reads: 400
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
Feb. 12, 2016 12:00 AM EST Reads: 273
It's easy to assume that your app will run on a fast and reliable network. The reality for your app's users, though, is often a slow, unreliable network with spotty coverage. What happens when the network doesn't work, or when the device is in airplane mode? You get unhappy, frustrated users. An offline-first app is an app that works, without error, when there is no network connection.
Feb. 11, 2016 11:00 PM EST Reads: 226
Data-as-a-Service is the complete package for the transformation of raw data into meaningful data assets and the delivery of those data assets. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lakshmi Randall, an industry expert, analyst and strategist, will address: What is DaaS (Data-as-a-Service)? Challenges addressed by DaaS Vendors that are enabling DaaS Architecture options for DaaS
Feb. 11, 2016 10:45 PM EST Reads: 363
One of the bewildering things about DevOps is integrating the massive toolchain including the dozens of new tools that seem to crop up every year. Part of DevOps is Continuous Delivery and having a complex toolchain can add additional integration and setup to your developer environment. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, Miko Matsumura, Chief Marketing Officer of Gradle Inc., will discuss which tools to use in a developer stack, how to provision the toolchain to minimize onboa...
Feb. 11, 2016 10:00 PM EST Reads: 122
As someone who has been dedicated to automation and Application Release Automation (ARA) technology for almost six years now, one of the most common questions I get asked regards Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS). Specifically, people want to know whether release automation is still needed when a PaaS is in place, and why. Isn't that what a PaaS provides? A solution to the deployment and runtime challenges of an application? Why would anyone using a PaaS then need an automation engine with workflow ...
Feb. 11, 2016 05:15 PM EST Reads: 218
SYS-CON Events announced today that Catchpoint Systems, Inc., a provider of innovative web and infrastructure monitoring solutions, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's DevOps Summit at 18th Cloud Expo New York, which will take place June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Catchpoint is a leading Digital Performance Analytics company that provides unparalleled insight into customer-critical services to help consistently deliver an amazing customer experience. Designed...
Feb. 11, 2016 05:00 PM EST Reads: 392
The cloud competition for database hosts is fierce. How do you evaluate a cloud provider for your database platform? In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Chris Presley, a Solutions Architect at Pythian, will give users a checklist of considerations when choosing a provider. Chris Presley is a Solutions Architect at Pythian. He loves order – making him a premier Microsoft SQL Server expert. Not only has he programmed and administered SQL Server, but he has also shared his expertise and passion w...
Feb. 11, 2016 04:30 PM EST
With the proliferation of both SQL and NoSQL databases, organizations can now target specific fit-for-purpose database tools for their different application needs regarding scalability, ease of use, ACID support, etc. Platform as a Service offerings make this even easier now, enabling developers to roll out their own database infrastructure in minutes with minimal management overhead. However, this same amount of flexibility also comes with the challenges of picking the right tool, on the right ...
Feb. 11, 2016 04:15 PM EST Reads: 181
SYS-CON Events announced today that FalconStor Software® Inc., a 15-year innovator of software-defined storage solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. FalconStor Software®, Inc. (NASDAQ: FALC) is a leading software-defined storage company offering a converged, hardware-agnostic, software-defined storage and data services platform. Its flagship solution FreeStor®, utilizes a horizonta...
Feb. 11, 2016 04:00 PM EST
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 ad...
Feb. 11, 2016 03:45 PM EST Reads: 413
SYS-CON Events announced today that (ISC)²® (“ISC-squared”) will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Two leading non-profits focused on cloud and information security, (ISC)² and Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), developed the Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) certification to address the increased demand for cloud security expertise due to rapid growth in cloud. Recently named “The Next...
Feb. 11, 2016 03:00 PM EST
The Art of DevOps provides a fun overview to help teams understand DevOps. Written in the style of the famous 6th century Chinese manuscript “The Art of War,” this eBook describes DevOps in the form of a mission to continuously deliver assets to the operational battlegrounds safely, securely, and quickly. It’s a fun read with valuable insights.
Feb. 11, 2016 02:45 PM EST
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
Feb. 11, 2016 02:45 PM EST Reads: 442