Bob Milliken
Bob Milliken

Welcome to the second installment of our “There’s Much More to Backups than Just Backing Up” 4 part series on computer system backup.

Last week we focused on the need for Disaster Recovery Planning where we pointed out that many businesses routinely suffer significant data loss because they discover errors in their plan too late — usually while trying to recover their data.

This week we are going to focus on building a proper working backup system. This is important because a proper working backup system will ensure that you can recover from a “critical” event.

The most important “critical” event is a disaster recovery. That means a complete rebuild of your server or, even worse, all the technology in your office. Disaster recovery happens when a hard drive crashes, the office is flooded, the office is burned down, or perhaps you get hit with a Ransomware virus. Disaster recovery means restoring everything because you lost everything!

There’s only one way that’s possible: You need a perfectly working backup system. That’s no exaggeration: if it’s less than perfect, then you can’t restore everything and if you can’t restore everything, you don’t have a backup. Period!

Your perfect backup has to be designed by a qualified technician. That’s not you, unless you’re a technician and you are qualified. If you’re very good at what you do, then you understand what it means to hire someone wBackup systemho knows what they’re doing.

If you’re in business long enough you will experience a catastrophic data loss. It’s only a matter of time. The real question is, how long can your company survive when you have no server or none of you systems are working? Factor this thinking into your backup planning.

I am often asked “how much data do I need to back up?”. My simple answer is:

  1. What do you want to recover if your office burns down?
  2. Back that up.

Everyone tells me they don’t want to lose anything. Ever. That used to be nearly impossible. It was very difficult and very expensive. Today it is very possible and not extremely expensive. But it has to be designed right, implemented properly, and tested regularly.

It’s crucial to test the recovery capabilities of the system because without actually testing it you’re making an unwarranted assumption that the system is working. If you don’t run test restores from your backup then you cannot guarantee that you actually have a working backup.

Here’s a scary statistic for you: Most companies we take on as new clients do not have a working backup! Do you be one of them.

Next week we’re going to take a look at the differences between data backup and business continuity.

If you’re not positive that you have a properly designed and working system, give us a call.

Bob Milliken is the specializing in helping businesses with their IT needs. Discover how great local IT services can be.604.270.1730.