A Simple but Effective Backup Strategy
Selecting Backup System
You need to have a thoughtful planning to develop a good backup strategy. Each step should consider many factors such as expertise and budget. Firstly, you need to decide what kind of hardware required for your backup. A tape backup is an example of the least expensive backup media option for the market today. Secondly, you need also to determine how much data that is going to be protected. It will help you to determine what type of system you require.
Thirdly, you may consider what kind of backup strategy you will use to backup your data. It can be an image backup or a file backup. We'll take a look at these backup strategies and identify the requirements.
An image backup is a physical disk level backup by creating a physical image of an entire disk. The backup transfers sectors or physical data storage blocks from the source to backup media. This kind of backup strategy provides a fast transfer rate because it moves the head of hard disk smoothly from one sector to another sector as the data transferred. It's a simple backup strategy since the entire content of the hard disk is considering as a unit.
Several backup software vendors improve this kind of backup with a block-level copy to speed up the process of backup. This kind of backup strategy may require a cold backup in which no new data could be inserted or modified during the image backup process.
This kind of backup strategy will backup files and its file identifiers. The server facilitates a backup monitoring and reporting on a possible error. Many vendors offer a hot backup. In a hot backup, backup can be run while the system is active. There are incremental, differential or delta file backup. Basically file characteristics are compared to database of previous backup operation to identify any change since previous backup. Only changed files or new files are back up.
In a differential backup , modified files may be maintained as a separate version. An incremental backup will replace modified files with the new ones. Most backup software vendors support these kind of intelligent backup. The method of documenting modification and recovery strategy vary between vendors. The incremental backup which only copy modified files runs very fast. Even though most people find this is enough to be run at each end of day, you have to coordinate this with full backup.
There're several other backup strategies. One of them is a host-free backup in which the backup system is using intelligent agents to initiate backups that can run independently on each host. With this strategy you have to spend time to install an agent on each host but it will save the server resource and enabling a direct copy. Another backup strategy is by implementing a RAID striping and mirroring to facilitate multiple concurrent backup. This kind of technology can enable you to do backup at a high speed.