It is an exercise that every company in the Western world engages in every year: the eternal search for cutting costs. Since data storage and backup tends to be an area that so few people understand, it is often overlooked as a possible money saving source. The reality is that many companies spend way too much on data backup because they are slow to update their methods and they don’t take into consideration all of the elements involved to reflect total cost of ownership. Here are just a few ways technology is helping companies everywhere save money, while improving restore time objectives, minimizing risk and ensuring compliance.
Two Winning Strategies
Duplicate data is a problem. Old, useless data is a problem. Solve both of them by utilizing data de-duplication technology and establish a data retention plan. Both of these methods will help to save you money in different ways. First, data de-duplication is the process of using markers that point to duplicated data instead of simply backing up everything over and over again. This advanced system of data storage can significantly reduce the amount of time it takes your company to back up all of their data each and every day – and more importantly – reduce the amount of time to restore the data when it is needed. By recording data once and then using a simple marker system that points to that one piece of information instead of recording it again, your total backup and restore windows can be reduced significantly – not to mention the amount of storage required to house that data.
Data retention plans are not new...we all know the IRS requires us to keep certain data for a specific amount of time in order to prove our innocence, should we ever get audited. In business, it’s different. Different types of data have different values and different compliance concerns associated. A data retention plan, if implemented correctly, should place a value on different types and classifications of data, allowing a company to align the backup and restore processes with those classifications. This process ensures the data that is the most critical to the operation of your business is highly protected and readily available, while old, useless data is either purged from the system or stored on less expensive media, such as tape or slow disk. This alone can provide a significant cost savings relative to backup and recovery tools.
Block By Block
In addition to the data retention policies, block-level backups can save even more time and money. A block-level backup is different than a file-level backup because it only backs up information that is new and information that has changed. For instance, let’s say you have opened up a 100 page document and made a change on page 43...traditional backup systems will see that as a new file and back up the entire file. Block-level backup systems will only store the small blocks of data that make up the change, greatly reducing the amount of space required to protect both document versions. The result is a greatly reduced backup window, faster restore times and lower data storage costs.