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Data Backup and Disaster Recovery: The Importance of Data Integrity

Sep 10, 2008
For any type of business, whether it's a retail store or a large investment firm, computer data matters. In fact, in our technologically evolving world computer data is more important than ever. Without our computers many businesses would simply fail to run. The problem comes in when businesses fail to properly secure and backup their important files (and many of them don't).

Since computers are machines, there comes a time when they do fail. As it pertains to business, the loss of data due to hardware failure, misplaced files, viruses, or a plethora of other reasons costs enterprise millions of dollars each year.

The simple truth is that having a plan in place, and implementing that plan, is all it takes to prevent the possible costs of losing important enterprise data.

THE PROBLEM CREATED BY POOR BACKUP HABITS

As an example of what happens when a business loses important data, let's look at a hard drive failure.

This is a common reason for data loss. A hard disk contains a series of circular plates that all spin inside the disk assembly. Data is written and retrieved using a disk head. These wafer-thin disks turn at speeds of up to 10,000rpm. With this fast movement, and the other mechanical parts inside the disk, it isn't uncommon for the disk head to crash; leaving your data inside, and many times damaging the data stored on those disks.

The big cost comes in when it comes time to recover that data. A disaster recovery center must take apart the assembly, recover the data from each disk plate, and then transfer that data to a different media. The cost to have data recovered from a single $50 hard drive often runs into thousands of dollars, and many times not all of the lost files can be recovered.

That is just one example of how data is lost. Human error is actually the most common problem, behind that comes computer viruses, hardware failure, software error, data theft, and many other reasons. Since we know that our data is important, with a list of problems that large, it's surprising that many businesses don't take data loss seriously.

DISASTER RECOVERY USING DATA BACKUP

The right way to ensure that computer files stay safe is with regular backups. Simply saving a copy of important files is a start. With a copy of a PC's most important files copied to a different media (or different PC) disaster recovery then becomes copying them back when the problem is fixed.

With such a simple concept, there should never be a reason for disaster recovery services to even exist. Unfortunately however they do, and it isn't because backing up data is difficult or expensive. It isn't even time consuming like it used to be.

COST EFFECTIVE METHODS FOR DATA BACKUP

For the business that has just one or two PC's that house important data, the backup features included with Windows XP, or Windows Vista are usually adequate. This simple built-in function allows a user to backup all personal files with a few clicks of the mouse. It can backup to CD/DVD media, to a USB drive, or even to another hard drive. When a business has more than a couple PC's though, this feature can become cumbersome and time consuming.

When it comes to a larger business setting, the better use is to use software for data backup. There are programs that allow for automatic backup of data across a network. There are even programs, such as our own data backup software, that allow field workers to keep their data secure, and allow for interoffice data integrity. With this type of solution all of a business's important files are kept on a backup server. Restoring any PC on the network is as simple as a few clicks of the mouse.

The simple truth is that, in the world of business, data integrity matters. Keeping business files secure is often as simple as using a cost effective backup method. If all enterprises would adopt this simple idea, there likely would no longer be a need for disaster recovery services, or the huge expenses associated with those services!
About the Author
This article is provided courtesy of Druvaa, a premier provider of data backup solutions for enterprise. Their current offering, Druvaa inSync, includes patent pending technology that makes for ten times faster backups for enterprise customers.
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