Why are backup and recovery measures often not as robust as they should be?

Data protection is essential for every business and its importance cannot be underestimated for disaster recovery (DR) and prevention of data loss as a result of more day to day incidents. Yet even after several decades of effort, backup and recovery functions often resemble less of a science and more a dark art in many organisations. Why? Well from a practical perspective, Freeform Dynamics research has consistently shown how difficult it can be to protect data that is increasingly spread and replicated across many locations, including the cloud, departmental servers and user devices. It also illustrates how hard it can be to get hold of budget to improve the situation. But after many years during which the basics of data protection have changed little, things have recently begun to evolve rapidly. The storage and information technology landscape is now changing with a pace never before witnessed. New solutions, new vendors, the ‘return’ of old faces such as VERITAS and ArcServe to independence, with even some of the more traditionally staid vendors extending their capabilities. And this is just as well, as over the next few years, the data protection challenge will become greater still for enterprises of all sizes as a result of escalating business requirements and mounting regulatory demands. An essential step IT professionals must take is to ensure they look at the needs of different data sets then assess which of the expanding range of data protection capabilities it makes sense to use in each case. If this can be driven from a business perspective, with things like risk and recovery times translated into potential commercial impact, hopefully the process of budget extraction could become less of a ‘mission impossible’ challenge. The good news is that for the first time it is actually becoming easier to implement and operate many data protection solutions as some vendors have finally started to focus on operational management simplification. The principle is to implement more policy-driven automation under the covers, so there is less to worry about on the surface. So, is it time to review how data protection is done in your organisation based on how needs are evolving, rather than just carrying on with the same old processes that have been in place for years? If you suspect you should be at least taking a look at some of the latest developments, we have lots of material to help. We would encourage you to check out the items listed in the Related Material section below, but feel free to explore our site in general. Related Material Data Protection as a Business Enabler Not all data is created equal The Democratization of IT Disaster Recovery Executive Briefing Guide Data Protection and Management in a Box Appliances that take the pain out of backup and archiving The Data Protection Imperative Time to take notice, time to become proactive The Data Fragmentation Challenge Data everywhere, but few policies to guide where data should and shouldn’t be stored Key Advances in Storage Technology Overview of new solutions and where they are being used Modern Storage Options for Small and Mid-Sized Businesses Advanced solutions deliver power and simplicity Data Protection and RAID Modern business needs new storage protection 21st century data protection: Get back up to date Webcast with Tony Lock

Tony is an IT operations guru. As an ex-IT manager with an insatiable thirst for knowledge, his extensive vendor briefing agenda makes him one of the most well informed analysts in the industry, particularly on the diversity of solutions and approaches available to tackle key operational requirements. If you are a vendor talking about a new offering, be very careful about describing it to Tony as ‘unique’, because if it isn’t, he’ll probably know.