Remote backup as a part of data protection in companies has a vital importance since it guarantees the organization its operational continuity and functionality in the occurrence of loss or damage to critical data that may affect them, such as:
In summary: situations and events often arise that compromise the integrity of the data of processes and users, and therefore the operation of the company. A sophisticated remote backup strategy helps to be prepared in the events of disaster.
The importance of the remote backup in organizations is widely accepted and although that protection is the main objective, provision of such also allows for:
However, it is of course necessary that the backed up data is stored in secure sites, which may or may not be managed and maintained by the same company. This data may also be stored in places physically outside of the company. To backup and store the data outside of the organization companies use remote backup solutions.
Therefore, there are two potential destinations for storage of backup volumes:
Local locations are used, generally, to back up information on devices (such as disks, tape drives, automatic tape replacement robots, NAS and SAN devices) located in the same physical space or accessible at very close distances, commonly, through a LAN.
The configuration and use of these locations allow data recovery in case of losses that do not affect the total productivity of the data center. Although they require recovery actions, their involvement is partial, or focused on the process or place where it occurs. Usually, they are managed by the same company's personnel.
The use of remote backup software allows organizations to store the volumes that contain the backups to external sites, which may or may not belong to them, thus guaranteeing mechanisms and tools for recovery in the event of information loss – possibly in situations that the organization cannot control, such as natural disasters, fires, floods, physical faults in the infrastructure, electrical faults, thefts, etc., and which could significantly impact the company’s normal activities and operating processes.
Due to the features that data backup tools offer and the technological improvements that have emerged in terms of network connectivity, optimization of servers and equipment, improvements at the level of cabling and interconnection, among others, remote backup has shaped as a tool that is increasingly relied on to protect the corporate data.
Remote backup software allows organizations to perform automated backups of information efficiently to remote sites, either through a WAN or the Internet. Like network backup software, it is composed of several elements (master or director process, clients that run the application agents and storage management services) that work together for the configuration and execution of the organizational backup policy.
Although there are many advantages and functions offered by remote backup solutions, some considerations arise that are necessary to keep in mind, such as:
Due to the increase in the amount of information generated in the companies at present and the increasing need to access this information in a timely manner, the use of the public or private clouds as a destination and location for remote backup is increasingly employed as a valuable resource, either as a single or hybrid solution.
Inside this category there is a remote backup solution to the cloud, which allow copies of data and information on remote storage sites on the Internet. This service is made available by different providers such as Amazon, Azure, Google or any other that offers resources with the appropriate levels of security, accessibility and operation required for this process.
On the topic of cloud backups in general, it’s important to mention that there are two different types of cloud backup that can be employed – and both of those are still considered remote backups, as well. As such, there are remote backups in public clouds and backup-as-a-service.
Remote public cloud backups are perfectly represented in our example above – most of the bigger public cloud storage providers are offering their data storage services for anyone, including both smaller companies and massive enterprises. The most common choice of a public cloud backup storage provider would be between the three biggest players – Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, and Google Cloud.
All three of those examples offer not only remote backup storage, but also the infrastructure capable of working as a part of your company’s disaster recovery scenario. It’s also possible to deploy specific solutions directly into public clouds, as well.
An alternative to the public cloud backup scenario also exists – in the form of a BaaS solution or Backup-as-a-Service. In this case, the remote backup storage provider is not a public cloud, but the same company that provides you backup and recovery services in the first place. While this option is more suitable for smaller or medium-sized companies, it’s still a viable all-in-one solution for companies that are just starting out and have no need for a dedicated backup and recovery department inside their own structure.
It is worth noting that there’s no definite consensus on how to approach remote backups and cloud backups. Some say that cloud backup is just a different variation of a remote backup, since the placement of backups is different from the company’s main server in both cases. On the other hand there’s also an opinion about remote backups and cloud backups being strictly different and treated as two different backup types altogether.
This kind of argument is not exactly definitive when it comes to determining the best backup type for yourself, but it may bring some confusion to the field when the discussion revolves around cloud and remote backups.
If BaaS is mostly used by smaller companies, larger enterprises often look at hybrid cloud backups as a possible approach. In this case, a variation of a D2D2C appliance is used to transfer the data in question to a high speed local appliance, and then the data in question is quickly transferred to a cloud service using that same appliance.
The main difference for enterprises that the hybrid cloud storage can provide is another layer of protection against various disasters, both physical and digital. Of course, more common security measures are also included in the package most of the time, such as encryption, MD5 authentication, signature computation, and more.
The main features offered by the remote backup solutions are:
Regarding the required functions that are not often present in some data backup solutions, please consider:
The advantages obtained with the use of remote backup strategy are:
Additionally, the use of backup solutions to remote destinations in the cloud will be more common due to the existence of operating environments in the area of technology with hybrid modes. These have resources defined in local scenarios and others configured in the cloud, which offer tools and applications to be used in organizations.
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Bacula understands nobody is hurt, and wishes all concerned a speedy recovery to their services We recommend all organizations use a modern disaster recovery solution. Please don’t take needless risks with your business. OVH datacenter disaster shows why recovery plans and backups are vital