Backups.

By now most people understand that there is a need to backup their data. There are also a large number of different backup strategies and procedures.
A lot of people also haven’t realised that the recovery is more important to consider than the backups.
But before you try to find the right strategy and procedures you need to consider the following two points.

  • Recovery point objective
  • Recovery time objective
  • Recovery Testing

Recovery point objective
From the point of failure (File deletion, PC / NAS / Server crash, Internet Outage or building fire) which point back in time do you want to recover to.
The answer to this is how often to do the backups.

Example:
You do backups every Monday at 5pm, and there is a failure on the following Friday at 9am. Three work days of data is now lost as all the work done since Monday at 5pm is not included in the backups. The dollar value of those 3 days worth of work could be quite substantial, because not only is it lost, but in addition to the business having to spend time and resources recovering that data, you still have operate the business normally as well.

Recovery time objective
From the point of failure (File deletion, PC / NAS / Server crash, Internet Outage or building fire) how long is an acceptable time before the data in the backup can be recovered and accessed.
For some types of files and data, this can be as low as 5 minutes, if the right backup software/hardware and procedures are in place.

Recovery Testing
Some time needs to be set aside to review the backups and test that the recovery processes are actually meeting the above two objectives. Our lives and our businesses are constantly changing. Therefore it is logical that reasonable assumptions made during the design of a recovery process may not be valid forever.